Bramcote - Stapleford Hill & The Hemlock Stone
w/e 09 March 2003
The Grand Old Duke of York, so goes the rhyme, marched 10,000
men up to the top of a hill and then back down again. I don't
know why he did that but following his example I resolved to
ascend Stapleford Hill. My reason was to sample the reputedly
good views from the top.
Half way up I passed the Hemlock Stone - a 30 foot high sandstone
pillar that according to legend was thrown here by a giant.
Continuing past the Hemlock Stone I was faced with a choice of
paths and tracks through the trees and all of them led to the
top. The sunlight highlighting the bark on the trees created
an eerie landscape.
Nearing the summit it was clear that Gav, Stu, Matt and Andy
(among others) had got there before me and had left their marks
to prove it on the triangulation point. How very sad!
Fortunately the summit post had escaped their attention and it
remained standing unscathed.
And so to the view. I read somewhere that there was a good view
of the turrets at Wollaton Hall from here and even though, with
difficulty, it can be made out through the branches of the trees,
when the leaves appear there will be no chance whatsoever. Looking
in the opposite direction to Wollaton, this is probably the best
of the views - over Swancar Farm, Trowell and Ilkeston to Crich
and Derbyshire beyond. And now I understand the Grand Old Duke.
When you've reached the top, the only way is down!