Dale Abbey - A Winter's Trail
w/e 17 January 2010
All this week's pictures were taken
with a Kodak DX6490
Whilst still in the grip of the unusually long cold spell, we
decided on a walk one afternoon but thought it would be safer
in the countryside than on the black ice and compressed snow
that lay on most of the footpaths in town. A walk through Hermit's
Wood at Dale Abbey beckoned and we found the roads to the village
Our route followed many of the same lanes and footpaths as those
covered in the Dale Abbey Village Trail in 2005 when we
took a detailed look at the village but on this occasion we travelled
in the opposite direction although the view of the semi-detached
All Saints Church and Vergers Farmhouse is just as attractive
in these much colder conditions.
The path through Hermit's Wood was not difficult to negotiate
but we decided against the climb up to the Hermit's Cave and
thought how lucky we are to have a centrally heated home to return
to rather than live in this humble abode as the hermit did all
those years ago.
As the path leaves the wood, it continues across the field at
the edge of the wooded hillside to the right with a view to the
distant Meadow Cottages to the left.
I had envisaged this part of the walk to be through crisp virgin
snow and was surprised to see how much it had been trodden down
- obviously still a popular walk for many people even in adverse
conditions. Just beyond the trees in the centre of this image,
one reason why it is so popular became clear as tracks down the
hillside showed it had been much used for the running of sledges.
The path eventually leads out onto Woodpecker Hill at the junction
of Dale Road to Stanton-By-Dale and Potato Pit Lane to Sandiacre.
Having left the snowy fields behind, the remainder of the walk
was along the road back into the village.
Premises are few and far between in this part
of the village and after passing Meadow Cottages, there is only
Woodpecker Cottage (above) near the bottom of Woodpecker Hill
and the row of cottages (left) on the sharp right hand corner.
From here the road back towards the centre of the village becomes
Moor Lane (right) and all along the lane are views of the Abbey
ruins over to the left.
We could have taken a footpath
across the field (left) for a closer view of the arch but with
the weather closing in again and the cold wind becoming stronger
I made do with the zoom on the camera for the above image and
continued along Moor Lane as far as the Carpenter's Inn where
a left turn soon returned us down The Village (right) to the
car and a return home for a warming drink.