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Sunday, 31 July 2016

Chee Dale and the Railway Tunnels

My turn to drive this week and we had discussed it last week and we set off to park in Millers Dale Railway Station and walk through several tunnel then go down and walk along the river bank. All 4 of us this week and we arrived at the car park about 06:50 where they was only 2 other cars in. We quickly got booted up and set off along the old railway track, past the old station and then the huge lime kilns. It wasn't long before we got to the first tunnel and then followed by three other tunnels with large and small gaps between them. When we got to the Blackwell Mill Cottage area we came off the railway route and went down to the river bank. The walk up to then had been straight forward but that was about to change. The track got a bit wet under foot and we then had to navigate across a couple of area's with stepping stones in the river, we also crossed the river several times on wooden foot bridges. The limestone in this area is said to be the thickest in Derbyshire up to 300 feet thick. The stepping stones are in the river under a huge slab of limestone and they can be under water when the river is in full flow. We have been there several years ago and indeed they were a couple of inches under the surface, but it all added to the adventure. We stopped under one of the bridges for our breakfast and spotted a couple of Yellow Wagtails then later on a Dipper. The path was sometimes very uneven and slippy with limestone poking up on the trail. The river winds its way back towards Millers Dale and at one point we were walking north where the river does a huge horseshoe bend. When we got back to the car park it was quite full with a lot of climbers heading out.
Apologies for the quality of some of the pics because the light levels were very low right down in the gorge and high ISO was required so there may be a bit of grain showing.

Stepping stones through Chee Dale on the River Wye

This weeks route through Chee Dale

Miller Dale Station

Lime Kilns

Ike, Geoff and Rob

The first of many tunnels

Even horses come through the tunnels

Dead Shrew

Ochre colour on these walls


Blackwell Mill Cottages

Geoff with the giant rhubarb 

Geoff, Ike & Rob

The gorge was very narrow and steep at this point

Ike, Rob & Geoff on the stepping stones

This is where we had our breakfast






Looks like a cave

Geoff & Ike


Back to the station and the car park
 This was a great walk just over 4 miles with some stunning scenery along the way. The sun was shinning on the railway trail but we didn't see much of it when we got down into the gorge on the riverbank. Thoroughly enjoyed it.
See you next week.