Dale Abbey - A Winter's Trail
w/e 17 January 2010
All this week's pictures were taken with a Kodak DX6490

Village Centre

Whilst still in the grip of the unusually long cold spell, we decided on a walk one afternoon but thought it would be safer in the countryside than on the black ice and compressed snow that lay on most of the footpaths in town. A walk through Hermit's Wood at Dale Abbey beckoned and we found the roads to the village centre clear.

Our route followed many of the same lanes and footpaths as those covered in the Dale Abbey Village Trail in 2005 when we took a detailed look at the village but on this occasion we travelled in the opposite direction although the view of the semi-detached All Saints Church and Vergers Farmhouse is just as attractive in these much colder conditions.
Hermit's Cave

The path through Hermit's Wood was not difficult to negotiate but we decided against the climb up to the Hermit's Cave and thought how lucky we are to have a centrally heated home to return to rather than live in this humble abode as the hermit did all those years ago.
Meadow Cottages

As the path leaves the wood, it continues across the field at the edge of the wooded hillside to the right with a view to the distant Meadow Cottages to the left.
Well Used Path

I had envisaged this part of the walk to be through crisp virgin snow and was surprised to see how much it had been trodden down - obviously still a popular walk for many people even in adverse conditions. Just beyond the trees in the centre of this image, one reason why it is so popular became clear as tracks down the hillside showed it had been much used for the running of sledges.

The path eventually leads out onto Woodpecker Hill at the junction of Dale Road to Stanton-By-Dale and Potato Pit Lane to Sandiacre. Having left the snowy fields behind, the remainder of the walk was along the road back into the village.
Woodpecker Cottage

Corner CottagesMoor LanePremises are few and far between in this part of the village and after passing Meadow Cottages, there is only Woodpecker Cottage (above) near the bottom of Woodpecker Hill and the row of cottages (left) on the sharp right hand corner. From here the road back towards the centre of the village becomes Moor Lane (right) and all along the lane are views of the Abbey ruins over to the left.
Abbey Ruins

Arch From Moor LaneThe VillageWe could have taken a footpath across the field (left) for a closer view of the arch but with the weather closing in again and the cold wind becoming stronger I made do with the zoom on the camera for the above image and continued along Moor Lane as far as the Carpenter's Inn where a left turn soon returned us down The Village (right) to the car and a return home for a warming drink.

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