New Year’s Eve Hike in the Peak District

Upper Derwent Reservoir

Last year, my boyfriend and I closed 2016 in Sheffield and spent New Year’s Eve hiking in the Peak District; only a short car journey from the city. The last time I visited the area was over 10 years ago with my A-level geography class, so I was eager to return.

I planned the route with the help of Walking Englishman and I recommend checking out their website for ideas and inspiration. We chose the Ladybower Reservoir and Derwent Edge route as we were up for a challenge! It is rated ‘Hard’ by the Walking Englishman, however, it is perhaps the best route for varying vistas, climates, and terrain.

The weather on the day was favourable for the hike. Windy and cold on the peaks, but autumnal in the valley. Luckily, the cloud level wasn’t an issue either and it allowed us to fully appreciate the views.

We thoroughly enjoyed our hike. Nothing beats getting outside and experiencing the natural world. Our towns and cities can sometimes feel claustrophobic and void of any spirit. Thankfully, England is blessed with a rich and expansive countryside, which beats with energy and purpose. One of my aims for next year is to explore more of England’s beauty. I hope you can too.

Wishing you a prosperous and happy 2018!


The Great Brington Expedition!

I was anticipating yesterday for a few days following the Met Office’s heavy snow warning for the region. It was the perfect and rare opportunity to get outside and explore a winter wonderland on my doorstep; something us Northamptonians only get to experience every half decade or so. Well, at least in my own experience.

I planned a return walk from the Northampton suburb of Duston to the village of Great Brington some 5 miles away. En route time was about 1.5 hours each way at normal walking pace, give or take a few moments along the route to really take in the stunning views and sounds.

The route took me through the village of Upper Harlestone; past the Spencer Estate of Althorp; finally arriving at Great Brington. I made sure I wrapped up well and was well prepared as the forecast was for snow all day with a brisk northerly wind.

I thoroughly enjoyed this little expedition. I felt like I had achieved something given the prevailing weather conditions. Of course, this wasn’t an Antartica expedition, but just like Captain Scott, I was perhaps pushing my own personal envelope into what I could achieve if I set my mind to it – and it felt good! We all need those little achievements in our lives.

I only saw a handful of people en route and the odd mobile vehicle; not including those that had been abandoned! Everything was peaceful and unspoilt; a stark contrast to the urban chaos that I had left behind in Duston.

I took several photos on my phone and DSLR, some of which have been posted below. Such scenes won’t return for a long while perhaps, so I am glad that I made the decision to explore and capture.