Peak District again
Sheffield Travel Blog› entry 93 of 129 › view all entries
Sunday, at long last, was a sunny day. This was just as well, because Iain and I were off to visit his friends in Sheffield. They’ve just moved up from Norwich, so obviously, it’s a lot easier to visit them now.
I had a picture in my head of Sheffield as an industrial waste ground with a shopping mall. This was very, very wrong. It turns out that Sheffield has huge tracts of lovely peak district on its doorstep, and that the city limits extend, unusually for a British city, well into some very nice countryside. So after a really lovely lunch, the four of us, and their lovely baby, went off for a post walk stroll at Surprise View Point.
Surprise Viewpoint is, for a start, a fantastic place name. It’s also totally accurate. I would never have guessed, from the car park, that there was a ridge that you could see the whole Hope valley from. And there is another fantastic place name, right there. The Hope Valley.
It is as lovely as it sounds. The light was slightly hazy, but there was still a great view across a gorgeous valley, and of Hathersage at the bottom. The heather is fully out so the hills are all bright purple, and as the altitude here isn’t too high, there were lovely stands of trees too. As this is still the Dark Peak, there were wonderful rock formations, sculpted into strange rounded shapes by centuries and millennia of erosion.
The only slight irritation was that it was Flying Ant Day, the unpredictable and irritating day when, for reasons that I can’t remember but are almost certainly to do with reproduction, all the previously blameless ants in a given location grow wings and fly into you. They didn’t seem to bother the baby too badly, and they didn’t bite me, although the ones that got under my clothes and then died itched a bit, but they seemed to enjoy biting Iain. This is poetic justice for the fact he didn’t get bitten by anything when he was in Scotland, but still, ant bites hurt so I am slightly sympathetic.
Despite this, we had a wonderful day. We had a quick drink in a pub at the bottom of the hill, and then we drove back over Snake Pass to Manchester.