Wolfscote Dale Tuesday 18th September 2018

We were meant to be on holiday camping in the Lake District this week but one look at the forecast for gales meant we cancelled that trip. The weather at home however was much nicer so, instead of the Lakes, we have opted for some local walks and a trip to Leicester to see King Richard III. Day one of the stay at home holiday began with a walk that would also coincide with the first spell of seriously windy weather. Taking this into consideration we opted for a relatively sheltered walk with the option to go higher if the weather wasn't too bad.

Start: Alstonfield Community Hall (SK 1298 5562)

Route:

Alstonfield Community Hall - Narrowdale Hill - Narrowdale - Frank i' th' Rocks Bridge - Reynards Lane - Wolfscote Hill (TP) - Reynards Lane - Wolfscote Dale - Coldeaton Bridge - Overdale - Alstonfield Commuinty Hall

Distance: 7.5 miles     Ascent: 431 metres      Time Taken: 4 hrs 40 mins

Terrain: Clear paths and tracks.

Weather: Dry and warm, but very windy on the summits.

Pub Visited: Devonshire Arms, Hartington    Ale Drunk: Black Sheep Bitter

Route Map >>

 

Alstonfield

We start the walk in the delightful village of Alstonfield, parking in one of the three car parks in the village where all they ask for is a one pound donation.

Low Plantation

After a short section of road walking we cut across the fields in front of Low Plantation, just as the sun threatens to come out.

Once you have located the stile into the field route finding is always easy, although if you miss the stile there is another bridleway further up the road that will give you access to Narrowdale Hill.

Narrowdale Hill

Once across the bridleway we get our first view of Narrowdale Hill. This was one of two summits I'd never been on that, wind and cows permitting, I was planning on doing today.

Carder Low

Rather than drop down into How Narrowdale we stick to the path running above the dale, avoiding the cows normally found in the bottom of the dale. The added bonus is the distant view of Carder Low and Pilsbury Castle Hills

Wolscote Hill

From the top of Narrowdale Hill I get a good view across Wolfscote Dale to Wolfscote Hill, another summit I've never visited.

Upper Dove Valley

Turning around we also get a great view of the Upper Dove Valley and beyond.

Carder Low

Carder Low from Narrowdale Hill. Given the strength of the wind up here I'm amazed that I had any usable photos as it really was a case of kneeling down and bracing myself against the wind.

Thorpe Cloud

Looking back towards Alstonfield the view extends beyond Thorpe Cloud at the other end of the Dove Dale.

Gratton Hill

The view across How Narrowdale to Gratton Hill and the wind farm at Brassington.

After visiting the summit of Narrowdale Hill we return to the path above How Narrowdale and follow it until it passes through this deserted farm.

Rotary Tedder

The area is full of old deserted machinery such as this rotary tedder which would have been used for haymaking.

We follow the track towards Frank i' th' Rocks.

Definite signs that Autumn is upon us, lets hope storms Helene and Ali
don't remove all the leaves before we have a chance to enjoy
the colours Autumn normally brings.

Beresford House

As we follow the track towards Frank i' th' Rocks Bridge the views open up, here looking across towards Beresford House.

Frank i'th' Rocks

After crossing the bridge we opt for a coffee break before we begin the next ascent.

River Dove

I had hoped to get a shot of the bridge and River Dove from the other bank but I'm not dedicated enough to fight my way through the waist high nettles

River Dove

Wolfscote Hill

Instead of heading down Wolfscote Dale we diverted up a track behind Frank i' th' Rocks to the summit of Wolfscote Hill.

Wolfscote Dale

From the trig we had a view across both Wolfscote Dale and Dove Dale.

Narrowdale Hill

Looking back across Wolfscote Dale to Narrowdale Hill, with Wetton Hill behind it.

Ecton Hill

What you can't tell from these photos is the strength of the wind, as our arrival at the highest point of the walk coincided with the strongest gusts from Storm Helene passing over this location. John is in no danger of falling as the wind is just blowing him back towards the trig, whilst I'm struggling to stand still.

Wolfscote Dale

Any thoughts of having lunch up here, so we could enjoy the views, are abandoned, instead we head down looking for a more sheltered spot.

Axe Edge

Once we are back on Reynards Lane we start looking for a suitable lunch spot, hoping to keep the views across to Axe Edge.

Wolfscote Dale

We don't find anywhere suitable and so it's lunch in Wolfscote Dale.

Wolfscote Dale

After a late lunch we head down Wolfscote Dale as the clouds threaten to part.

River Dove

The River Dove flows through the dale.

Drabber Tor

Drabber Tor comes into view.

Peaseland Rocks

Peaseland Rocks appear shortly after.

Coldeaton Bridge

We cross over the River Dove at Coldeaton Bridge and make our way up the side of the dale.

Wolfscote Dale

We gain height quickly and are soon looking down on the dale below us.

Wolfscote Dale

The path takes us into a gully where a little bit of care is needed when placing your feet, but I find it a more pleasant route than the stepped one up the side of Peaseland Rocks.

Tissington Trail

From the top of the gully we can now look across the dale below and make out one of the bridges that carries the Tissington Trail above Wolfscote Dale.

Judging by the state of the lane we followed from the top of the gully back to Alstonfield this route isn't used very often.

Baley Hill

As we follow the lane back towards Alstonfield we are treated to views of Baley Hill and the woods above Dove Dale.

 

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