in Ashfield Rambling Club
Ladybower Reservoir walk, Dark Peak
This is a previous walk by the Sutton in Ashfield Rambling Club in South Derbyshire. Please click for details of the next walk or a walking calendar.
On Sunday (15th June 2008) the members of the Sutton Rambling Club enjoyed a walk round the Ladybower Reservoir area which is generally accepted as one of the prettiest locations in the Dark Peak.
This will be an exceptional ramble as we explore the fascinating grit stone rock formations stretching along Derwent Edge high above the valley. The scenery will be magnificent with panoramic views incorporating heather clad moors, sculptured tors, the sparkling waters of the Ladybower reservoir and quilted patterns of pine forest. Scenery that definitely bears comparison with the wonders of the Lake District.
There will be a choice of routes - the "A" walk will be 13 miles with an alternative "B" walk covering 10 miles.
The ramble will start at the eastern edge of the Ladybower Reservoir at Heatherdene car park (grid ref 202857) with adequate comfort facilities available. We initially head past the Ladybower Inn and then cut back west on a footpath signposted Ashopton and gradually ascend to enjoy the first of many impressive views of the reservoir. We then move northwards for a slow steady climb to Whinstone Lee Tor, another great vantage point where we will have a mid-morning break.
The second half of the morning will be very leisurely as we continue northwards along Derwent Edge via Wheel Stones,White Tor, Salt Cellar Boulder and Dovestone Tor. After passing by Bradfield Gate Head we reach our lunchtime objective Back Tor which at 538 metres is the highest point of our walk. We will take the opportunity to have our picnic lunch here whilst drinking in glorious panoramic views. In the event of poor weather we can shelter within rocks 50 yards below the summit.
In the afternoon we return to Bradfield Gate Head and then head westwards traversing the hillside above Far Deep Clough. After 1.25 miles we then start our descent to Ladybower Reservoir via a delightful tree-lined sunken way and emerge onto a tarmac road. We then turn left along the road and see the old stone posts marking the entrance to the Old Vicarage a feature of Derwent village prior to it being flooded when the reservoir was formed. At this point we will have a mid-afternoon break near the information board which provides fascinating historical information about the area.
At this point there are two choices-the "B" group can enjoy a leisurely walk back south along the tranquil tree shaded route alongside the reservoir. After reaching the A57 they turn left a by the road for a short distance until reaching the finishing point the Ladybower Inn. This completes their 10 mile walk and refreshments can be enjoyed before the 6.30 pm coach departure from the Inn car park.
The "A" party will move north along the road past Old House and Jubilee cottages and arrive at the Fairholmes Visitor Centre at the northern edge of the reservoir. There will be the opportunity to have a short break taking advantage of the facilities. The route then climbs westwards through woodland until reaching Woodcock Coppice on the edge of the wood. Great views again as we turn south following alongside the wood before opening out into a grassy route at Bridge End Pasture. The final section of the walk then descends close by Crookhill Farm until reaching the A57, crossing the viaduct to rejoin the "B" party at the Ladybower inn for the 6.30 departure home.
New members will, as always, be most welcome and will be able to enjoy healthy exercise, wonderful scenery and friendly company. Do please remember to bring sufficient food and drinks as there are no refreshments en route (except for the "A" party at Fairholmes.)
The ramble leader is Brian who can be contacted on 01623 654397
The McEwens coach leaves the "Staff of Life" pub on Hack Lane in Sutton-in-Ashfield at 9.15 am and Bancroft Lane end, Stockwell Gate (near the Netto supermarket) in Mansfield at 9.30 am.
Please click to see other pick-up points available.
If you would like further information about the club please phone John on 01623 796396 or Diane on 01623 408704 or click for the 2008 programme of walks and previous walks.