Church rambling group from St Paul's Church, Heaton Moor, Stockport. Meet second Saturday in the month except January. Anybody is welcome to join our group. Contact details posted in church or go to church website: http://www.stpaulsheatonmoor.org.uk/
Monday, 11 May 2015
Chatsworth Park - Saturday 9th May 2015
Nine hardy souls met up at St Paul's Road and drove over into the
Peak District via Sparrowpit, Stoney Middleton, Baslow and on into the
Chatsworth Estate at Calton Lees Car Park. I say 'hardy souls' as the weather was
not promising and your author was wearing over trousers and at least one walker
admitted to thermals!
We began by walking steadily up a hill until the road ended. A
further upward slope brought us to the top of the ridge that runs roughly south
from Baslow and provides the backdrop to Chatsworth House itself. The views at
this point made the trudge up the hill worth the huffing and puffing of some of
us. Behind each rolling hill there was another, more distant hill--and then
another. We walked through the the woods on forest tracks, while enjoying the
new greenery and the bluebells.
Above the Hall on this ridge are two lakes that feed the estate.
These are the Swiss and Emperor Lakes. The Emperor lake is very pretty with
benches to sit on and ducks and coots on the water. This was to be our lunch
stop. However, vital maintenance work had added heavy plant and a muddy lake
edge. We did find a log to sit on, with our backs to the machines, so it was
not too bad- and the rain was holding off. We took in the Hunting Tower with,
again, splendid views before continuing along the ridge and gradually loosing
height. After we had all clambered over a high stone stile we turned west and
into the estate proper before walking back along the river. Chatsworth was preparing
for a big horse trials event the next weekend and when we were 'close up and
personal' to the VERY large and solid fences one could only marvel at the
courage of both horse and rider in the cross country event. We were soon back
at Calton Lees and enjoyed tea and coffee and, of course, cake in the Garden
Centre coffee shop. We had earned it!