Thursday, 18 October 2012

Hangover Trail

 So the Sunday after the wedding dawned.  To the dulcet tones of Richard swearing because he'd slept through his alarm and was meant to be actually ON the golf course in less than 30 minutes!  Tee hee.  Trouble is, I'm too tender hearted so went downstairs to make him some toast to take with him.  This meant I was awake and couldn't get my beauty sleep after all!


Anyway, I thought I'd still have a nice lazy morning loafing around, uploading my photos and mucking around.  No camera.  Don't say I've left it at the hotel.  After a few calls, it appeared I might have done (and my coat!).  So I thought, no time like the present, I'll get back there and pick'em up!

What a beautiful day.  Below is Hassop Hall basking in the sunshine.  But unfortunately no camera or coat.  It could be an expensive wedding!

A few phone calls later, I establish that I hadn't left my camera but had dropped iit in the car on the way home and my coat must be at home as I'm assured I was wearing it when we left!  Doh!

So, then I thought I may as well make the most of being up at Hassop and go for a nice, flat, non-taxing hangover walk with the dogs.  The Monsal Trail is a disused railway line turned bridleway which you can pick up at the old Hassop station which is now a chintzy cafe, bookshop and bike hire centre. After a bacon and egg sandwich (well, I had been up for over 3 hours by now and was starving on just black coffee and a cold shower!), we set off.

It was great but, being so pretty, it was extremely popular with cyclists, families, pushchairs and wheechairs.  This meant I had to keep the dogs on a lead which was not restful to my hungover state.

Cue left turn up a hill onto a much quieter path.  I had no idea where it went and had no map but it looked fine.

And it was.  Totally deserted (I only met one other group in over an hour) and really pretty.  What a hangover cure. Perfect for the dogs as it was a broad, grassy, walled track.  No livestock but plenty of room to snuffle around.

Possibly a bit hillier than I'd anticipated but even that was rewarding. 

Great views.  Eventually we topped the hill and saw Bakewell in the distance.  I then found a right turn onto a footpath running across a field.  I hoped that this path would eventually lead us back to the Monsal Trail to avoid having to retrace our steps.

The dogs love a run around in a massive empty field!

I can't describe quite how isolated this house was.  There was NO road to it, just a track and a very muddy, ancient landrover.  It looked idyllic if you like peace and quiet, extreme peace and quiet!

From the fields we stepped into a green, shady wooded path heading back to the road down a steep hill.  I'm still hopeful about the Monsal trail though...

Yay!!  A circular walk.  Well, sort of.   The footpath hit a busy road with no footpath.  It was a bit of a pain with the dogs but I knew it wasn't far back to Hassop.  Then, just round the corner we saw the trail on a overpass above the road.  I struck through a thicket of nettles and cottony rosebay willowherb, up a steep clinker-sided embankment and then scaled the wall into another thicket before eventually emerging like Tarzan of the jungle back onto the Trail.  The dogs were wild with excitement and barking their heads off; I looked like I'd been dragged through a thicket twice and the families around me just stared....tee hee....

The last few hundred yards of our walk were the most surreal however.  First I saw a pennyfarthing ride past.  The chap was not, as you'd hope, wearing a frock coat and a top hat, but full-on lycra cycling gear.  V strange.

 And then up ahead we saw aneven stranger sight - a couple walking 3 little fluffy Bichon Frisees and 2 dogs I initially couldn't identify.  Mainly because they were not dogs but goats!  On leads being taken for a walk.  We caught up with them at the cafe and I asked if I could meet them and take some pics.  Aren't they lovely??

It was a lovely walk and my hangover had ALMOST gone by the time we got home.  Just a few hours of catching up with Strictly then before heading out for the quiz.  Perffick.

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