Sue and Martin above Zermatt - 2018

Sue and Martin above Zermatt - 2018

Monday, 10 May 2010

Sunday 9 May 2010 – Lathkill Dale

“Let’s go to Lathkill Dale” suggested the email from Graham.

So it came to pass that a dynamic quartet winged their way, in Polly – her first outing of this nature, to Monyash.

Luckily we arrived early.  That meant we could enjoy a mug of coffee outside The Old Smithy.  It was sunny and warm, or should I say ‘warm in the sun’ (cool elsewhere…).

Outside The Old Smithy, Monyash, on a sunny morning

Six others arrived.  The route march commenced.  I know I should be in training for the TGO Challenge, so I could just about keep up.

Mike The Bus fell back.  “Only my second walk in 18 months” huff “New Camera” puff, etc, etc (I’ll try not to bore you).

Mike huffs his way past One Ash Grange Farm

Eventually we re-grouped by a field of brightly coloured flowers.


A field of dandelions near Middleton

Very photogenic.

The Boss had obviously fallen behind schedule as some road walking was now required.  The pace picked up again and we were soon striding into Middleton, distracted only by a hungry horse.

The hungry horse 
Richard tried to make a getaway, but the old Rover 100 defeated his locksmith’s skills.

The Rover 100 at Middleton

It was very green by the River Bradford.

Beside the River Bradford.  Very Green.

A dizzy coot watched us fly by…”why so fast?” she squawked.

A dizzy nesting coot

We were clearly in a race against the brown trout to reach the hostelries of Youlgreave in time for lunch?

We overshot.

Suddenly we found ourselves striding on into Lathkill Dale, full of Sunday afternoon hordes. 

Lathkill Dale

Surely now time for a break?  A splinter group fell briefly behind, refuelling with chocolate caramel shortbread on the hoof.  Our leader usually stops for this, but not today.

On we dashed.

“Can we stop, please?” bleated a weary soldier with a neck problem.

“Only 5 minutes, just around the next corner” was the response.

20 minutes later:

Lunch in Lathkill Dale
What a relief!

Afternoon – a simple solution, I just fell back and went slowly, occasionally chancing upon the route marchers who had decided to wait.

Waiting for Martin

It took nearly as long to complete the afternoon’s 7 km as it had taken to walk 13 km in the morning.

We stopped to admire some flowers – they are flowering later than usual this year, but we did find one orchid by the path.

Early Purple Orchid
Butterbur Cowslip 

Tea/beer/hot chocolate/cakes all went down well at The Old Smithy, to which we had returned by 3.30, well exercised after this 20 km dash in 4.5 hours (Naismith would have taken rather longer) with 600 metres of ascent.

Here’s the route, which is not mandatory, ie footpaths to Middleton are permitted as an alternative to our rush along the roads, as is a pub stop in Youlgreave.  Lathkill Dale is highly recommended.

Our 20 km route, with 600 metres ascent, taking a brisk 4.5 hours.

There’s a short slide show here.


AlanR said...

Hi Martin, that looks a very pleasant walk.

I have just finished reading Markus's log. Its so annoying. Those red flags are flying almost all the time now, even when nothing is happening.

Somebody will come to harm here before long.

Have a good crossing, next 2 weeks.

Phreerunner said...

Thanks Alan
I think Markus was very disappointed to be baulked at the final hurdle after putting in so much effort to get there.
I'm just printing off the maps for the next two weeks. It's frightening; even the FWAs seem big days!

AlanR said...

I'm sure he was. I think,(well i know), i would have carried on, staying as close to the sea cliffs as possible except when you have to go inland to avoid the gullies.
But i can understand why he didn't.
I'll bet you have picked a high level route.
Where are you starting from and will you be blogging as you go?
Just spoke to Rose at BPL i was surprised that they are not doing it this year.

Trekking Britain said...

Love that walk, especially on a sunny day with fluffy white clouds!

Phreerunner said...

Starting from Lochailort, Alan - high level route but not over 3000 feet until near the end. Over-ambitious so will probably have to use FWAs.
Will try to post route before leaving.