Village - Waterloo Hotel - Brushfield - Bakewell
- Calton Lees - Rowsley - Stanton Moor - Harthill
Moor - Long Rake - Monyash Village
have been looking forward to this years White Peak
Walk for some time with the hope of completing the
a record time. I drove to Monyash nice and early to
in parking as I knew the fields which are normally
used would be very wet and probably would not be
arrival one of the Marshalls asked me to park in the
... this would be handy after the walk). After gathering
a few belongings into my rucksack and deciding if I
needed to wear a fleece or not (which I decided
not to) I headed off to the village hall for registration.
A lady in front of me asked how many would be taking
part in the walk today - the answer was that approximately
325 applied but 60 had unfortunately now cancelled.
(See exact numbers below).
waited a short while for the start at 10am. Photographs
were taken and final instructions given just before
the start of the walk ... a very long last few minutes.
Then we were off heading out of Monyash and following
Blackwell Lane to Flagg. The sun was out and the
clouds slowly breaking up so this promised to be
a great day. There was a lovely breeze too. Amazing
after all the bad weather over the last few weeks
with floods and heavy rain.
kept up a reasonably walking pace at just over
4mph. One of the advantages this year was that I
made sure that I was near to the front of all the
ensuing walkers. This meant that the early stiles
were crossed without any problem or queuing!!! After
Flagg we headed up Green Lane and Sough Lane to the
highest part of the walk on Taddington Moor. Then
it was a short decent down to the first checkpoint
at the Waterloo Inn. A quick drink and my card clipped
and then I was off again heading towards Priestcliffe.
As I had completed the walk for previous two years
I knew my way quite well. The second checkpoint was
not far away at Brushfield. I was joined by a local
lady from Monyash for a while (Samantha Johnston
- who in the end came in as the fastest local lady).
me she was studying at York University and
final year. Her t-shirt also informed me that she
was a member of the University Squash Team.
path from Brushfield leads one along the top of Monsal
Dale then descends steeply down to the famous aquaduct
which overlooks the dale. After crossing the aquaduct
the path ascends sharply to the Monsal Head Inn.
Although this walk is in the Peak District and one
does not ascend any mountains you still climb over
1,100 metres over the 26 mile course!!! Then it's
onwards through the lovely village of Little Longstone
and onto the Monsal Trail. The Trail is followed
for about a mile before heading off for Bakewell
and checkpoint 3. This week also sees the annual
carnival in Bakewell. From the checkpoint we walked
alongside the River Wye then along Coombes Road before
turning off to cross Bakewell Golf Club and then
climb steeply up through Manners Wood. This part
of the walk is 'way marked' and was quite wet underfoot
with streams of water flowing down our path. The
route over Calton Pastures and past Calton Houses
to the next checkpoint 4 at Calton Lees is nearly
downhill all the way.
quick bite to eat and drink before heading towards
Rowsley. The path across the fields was very muddy
and trying to avoid the deep mud and pools of water
was very difficult at times. The checkpoint at Rowsley
(5) offers tea and coffee as well as biscuits,
water and juice - very organised here!! This is the
where many walkers start to fight against the tired
legs and feet and in previous years many inexperienced
walkers have retired here.
route continues along a small lane through Holly
Wood and on to Stanton Woodhouse. Here one now crosses
fields and passes a small area where "New Age
Travellers" reside. A road is then reached and a
choice of direction can be made. Either follow the
road left and around the base of Stanton Moor or
follow the road right uphill to gain access to the
top of Stanton Moor. The latter was my route today.
I passed the ancient "Nine Ladies Stone Circle" while
crossing Stanton Moor. Eventually the Lees Road is
reached - I met some walkers here who had decided
to take the road instread. It's then downhill all
the way to checkpoint 6 in the village of Birchover
(Stanton Moor). There is a feeling that you are
well on your return journey here. More to drink and
then off again headed downhill through the village.
After passing the Druid Inn a track is taken in the
direction of Robin Hoods Stride. I can remember it
very well being in this area earlier in the year
- it's a lovely part of the White Peak.
crossing the B5056 we joined the Limestone Way to
pass Robin Hoods Stride and continue on to the next
checkpoint (7) at Harthill Moor. Then we went through
Harthill Moor Farm (where a very lively dog was on
the loose) at took the path towards Youlgreave. On
arriving at Youlgreave there are several options
to the next checkpoint but I decided that I would
take the quiet road (Moor Lane) out of the village.
This is quite a steep part of the walk (or seems
it when you have walked over 20 miles). It's a great
sight to see the last checkpoint (8) at Long Rake.
Only about 3 and a half miles to go now!!
fields once more to pass Calling Low keeping
on the Limestone Way. There is then a decent and
re-ascent at Cales Dale (which is close to Lathkill
Dale). This is very steep and wooded but a good stone
path prevails. It is a lovely dale. Not far to go
now. On reaching One Ash Grange Farm a wall is encountered
which must be climbed (via stone steps). Near the
top of the wall is where the new path continues
(it's a split level path!!). The final path to Monyash
is an easy one once again along the Limestone Way.
Weary legs for some on this final part of the walk.
The path goes through the churchyard to arrive back
at the Village Hall.
was a great day and congratulations to all those
who took part in the walk. Also a very big thank
you to all those who arranged such a splendid event
again. I will be back again next year.
the end 253 walkers and runners took place in the
White Peak Walk. 15 retired at various points throughout
the walk. My time of 8 hours and 12 minutes placed
me 83rd (my best yet!!)