Bird's-foot Trefoil, Cat and Fiddle pass, Cat and Fiddle pub, Cladonia pleurota, Common Cottongrass, Common Hawker dragonfly, common knapweed, common ragwort, conifer plantation, Crosswort, Derbyshire Bridge car park, driven grouse shooting, eyebright, Goyt Valley, harebell, Harlequin ladybird, heath bedstraw, heather, Kestrel, Knotted Pearlwort, Lesser Stitchwort, Lousewort, Meadow Crane's-bill, milestone, Mountain Pansy, old coach road, Peak District, River Goyt, Shining Tor, Sneezewort, tormentil, Upright Hedge Parsley, walking, yarrow
On the third day of our stay in the Peak District we decided on a slightly longer walk than usual and took a picnic with us. We drove towards Buxton but just before entering the town we took the A54 road off to the right and then a minor road off that road and parked the car in the Derbyshire Bridge car park. This is a pleasant spot and is used as a picnic area.
Unfortunately, both ladybird and larva are Harlequin Ladybirds which have now outstayed their welcome in this country. I wish that those in authority were more wary about using introduced insects to control other insects.
We were delayed at the beginning of our walk by the car beeping an alarm whenever we tried locking the doors. After disturbing a couple who were having a picnic with their little grandson we decided that we ought to look at the car’s manual. We found that the car was telling us that we were locking the spare key inside the car and that it would rather we didn’t. I took the key out of my handbag which I had left in the boot and we were then able to start our walk.
This is a typical sight in moorland where driven grouse shooting takes place. The patches on the hillside show where the heather has been burned to promote new growth shoots for the grouse to feed on. I have recently signed a petition to have this sport banned as I think that instead of conserving wildlife these estates try to eradicate any creatures that may be a threat to their grouse. All raptors, including the scarce Hen Harrier and Golden Eagles are considered a threat and are regularly shot or poisoned illegally by some, not all, gamekeepers employed on some of these estates. In Scotland hundreds of thousands of Mountain Hare are culled every year. I’ve signed another petition about this too! I feel very strongly about this as you no doubt have realised.
At this point we turned onto another path which rose up towards a plantation. We entered the forest through a gate.
This reminded me of the stone walls that Allen from New Hampshire Garden Solutions finds in his local forest. In this case the land that was originally farmed for sheep was subsequently acquired by a company or organisation that planted conifers but didn’t bother dismantling the walls.
This was a flower I had never seen before. It is very small and the leaves are tiny! It is semi-parasitic on other plants’ roots.
The three photos above were taken while we rested and ate our lunch. This last part of the walk I found exhausting as it was a continuous uphill climb and on very uneven and rough paths with large, loose rocks to walk over.
The weather was cloudier and cooler than earlier in the week. We were glad of this!
We had thought we might go up Shining Tor but we changed our minds when we had got to the top of the stony path. We were too tired. Why is it called ‘Shining Tor’? I don’t know.
The visibility wasn’t great and the distant hills were lost in haze but the sky above us was clear and blue now. We began to descend towards the Cat and Fiddle pass (I expect you were wondering why this post was called Cat and Fiddle) and the Cat and Fiddle pub.
It does seem sad that the place that the pass was named after should be shut and empty. We walked past the pub. Through the windows we could see everything had been left as it was on the day it had shut months before. There was even a menu board extolling the virtues of a meat pie!
We soon turned off the main road onto a narrow road that would eventually bring us back to the carpark. I saw many different plants on the way.
We found the car, drove back to our caravan and made ourselves a nice cup of tea. We were quite tired after our long walk and found it difficult to stay awake. We had arranged to have lunch with my brother-in-law the next day so Richard booked a table at a local restaurant and phoned his brother to let him know when and where we were to meet each other.
To be continued….
Thanks for visiting!