This can only be a snapshot of the weekend because I didn’t fully participate only joining the group to lead a walk on Saturday.
I did pop over on Friday evening to announce my walk which was planned to be the middle distance of the three on offer. I invite the other leaders or a participant to submit a report from their walk.
Perhaps influenced by the filling meal the group had just taken the majority opted for the shortest walk so I’m grateful to those who agreed to join me on an adventurous bus walk.
On Saturday morning we set off to Milford and the bus stop, being a little early gave an opportunity to for a brief history tour of Milford. Today we could only see the building that houses the wonderful 1937 hydro electric generator (read more) but here’s what we missed.
MIlford Hydo-electric plant
We caught the bus to Belper the original plan being to stock up with lunch but all were fully provisioned so we used the bus to take us high above Belper then walked down Long Row to the East Mill having looked down on it over the rooftops. We also popped into the pleasant Riverside Gardens. Hundreds of birds were on the river and discussion took place as to their name. (Chris provided the answer – Black Headed Gull see RSPB website)
While waiting at the next bus stop who should we spy approaching but the long walk group. Well, when I say group it was leader and one follower. They had already done 4 miles and we were yet to start.
Waiting for the bus
Our walk started at Cowers Lane half way along the Ecclesbourne Way a walk from Duffield to Wirksworth of 11 miles. It follows the river of that name and the Ecclesboure Valley Railway. It was pretty wet underfoot but the rain held off as we headed up the valley. Late coffee or early lunch was taken at Idridgehay station where there is a seat. We were also pleased to see a passing train.
Because of heavy going and low cloud it was voted that we miss Alport Height. Little point in climbing to a viewpoint when we knew the views were hidden. Closer views were very much appreciated so no great loss. At Wirksworth station a loop around town paths was on offer but a tea shop and earlier return bus gained most votes. I believe that a beer festival at The Holly Bush in Makeney may also have been an influence.