Small steps. I have a dream that as this year progresses, I will be out in the countryside walking once again. Mile after mile with no pain in my feet, knee or chest. Taking advantage of good weather. Snapping photos. Following my maps. It was something I took for granted just a few months ago. And it was my way of maintaining a decent level of physical fitness. Surely I will get it back but first of all it's small steps.
|At Surprise View - looking down into The Hope Valley|
Today I drove out to the Peak District Car Park near Surprise View. Irritatingly, I discovered that the "pay and display" machine only takes bank cards and I only had coins in my pocket. So before setting off in the snow I had to write a note to leave on my dashboard - "Your machine does not take coins and I don't have my wallet with me. If you give me a parking ticket I will kill you!"
And then I set off for my short walk. Partly, I was hoping to snap some old millstones that are abandoned by the path that leads through the woods to Bole Hill Quarry but there was still enough snow to keep most of them covered.
|Millstones in the snow|
I wandered through the woods to an old quarry known by rock climbers as Lawrencefield. This quarry was the source of much of the stone that was needed to build great dams in The Derwent Valley which is five miles away - Howden Dam, Derwent Dam and Ladybower Dam. They were built over a hundred years ago and for the transport of all this stone a special railway track was constructed.
Some afternoon climbers were packing up. Their fingers must have been frozen while scaling that sheer wall of millstone.
After an hour I wandered back to the car.- delighted to discover that I hadn't received a parking ticket from one of the enforcement officers who occasionally prowl around Surprise View hungry for innocent prey. Perhaps they had read my note.
|At Lawrencefield Quarry|
|Climber at Lawrencefield|