Pilsbury to Milldale
8 miles with no moving averages – just moving
Petes view -
A peaceful day after last weeks storms, and very welcome sunshine to start the day. As ever Kerry considered my knees and offered to take the easy route along the gated road to Hartington, but I knew she’d already set her heart on climbing the hill opposite and taking the high way to the village. Going up isn’t a problem for me, it’s the going down that brings discomfort. We headed back across the River Dove and diagonally up across the slope to the road below Sheen Hill. Scrambling bikes broke the peaceful setting, and at least I had some delight to know that one of these cretins churning up the countryside came off his bike several times. By contrast we walked through a farm that had been renovated in a superb way, complete with a fabulous garden room. The owner was happy to keep the ROW through his grounds and he loves to chat with passers by. So much so that it took an intervention by his wife for us to escape and carry on with the walk along to Hartington. We came across a superb bench by a lone tree a little further on but unfortunately it was already occupied, and we agreed it would have been a fine lunch spot. Descending into Hartington we spotted a friends van parked up and speculated where she was out walking today. Around the village duck pond we sat and had lunch and people watched as cars and bikes came and went. Lunch over and it was virtually all downhill to the end of the day. The dales took over and being a Sunday they were as busy as ever. It was a gentle walk down Beresford Dale, in its woods and its weirs, quite peaceful. Out into Wolfscote Dale, the valley sides are steeper and less wooded, with plenty of cattle and sheep grazing the pastures. Kerry always speculates how they don’t fall down the steep ground to the river. I always speculate that they probably always use their four legs. From Coldeaton Bridge the dale winds around corners until turning into Mill Dale and a short walk along the road to the tiny tea shop, where just in the nick of time we ordered a warming drink, and wandered up the road to the car.
Kerrys view -
After the dramatic weather of the last walk, todays was much more settled. Straight from the car, we headed uphill in sunshine reaching High Close Farm perched proudly over a magnificent view on the hill top. We stood admiring the view and the farm, now converted into a stunning home with a bunch of random animals, when the very friendly owner came over and introduced his goats and donkeys. After a lengthy natter we continued south to Hartington. The inviting typical village centre complete with duck pond offered plenty of benches to eat our sarnies on. The route south became a flat plod, taking in the magical Beresford Dale, where we lost the sun, down the impressively steep sided Wolfescote Dale and turning into Milldale. By this point, even on the flat, Pete’s knees were slowing him down so we stopped for a welcome cuppa in the little hamlet of Milldale, served by the lady in the cottage through the stable door and sat by the river Dove admiring the unchanged landscape.
“Nor far to the car now” I encouraged
But even 1/4 mile at the end of a walk was a task with disagreeing knees.