Tuesday 15 April 2014

Easter Holidays :: Part 3

Hello Lovelies, 
ever since I can remember  Mr BM has been saying that we ought to go cycling on the Tissington Trail. He rode along this converted railway line in the Derbyshire Dales when he was ten years old, on a school residential visit and it obviously made an impression as he has never forgotten it.
Somehow the years passed and we never got there.....but on Sunday we finally did it, and it was great.

This first picture is rather shaky, and actually that's how the day began. It's not easy transporting five large bikes inside and on top of your car. Add to that a couple of flat tires before we set off and another when we first arrived and it all seemed like rather too much effort for a simple bike ride. I did feel sorry for hubby, as most of the problems only he could sort out.

By 12.30 pm, three and a half hours after we started loading the car, we were finally off.......

Gosh, it was cold, so much colder than back home. And the sky was cloudy.

We climbed up a hill from the village of Tissington and were rewarded by this gorgeous view..............

Maybe all that effort was going to be worth while :0)

The clouds scudded across the landscape and I willed the sun to shine brightly on us as I knew this place would look even more beautiful in the sunshine.......

I loved the limestone  walls and already I was lagging behind as I kept stopping to take pictures........

This part of the trail was very busy and you had to beware of other cyclists and walkers........

But the going was quite easy. The route is fairly flat due to the railway line needing to be as level as possible. In many places you ride through "cuttings" where the ground has been dug away and primroses flowered at the foot of tangled roots.........

In other places you ride along embankments where the ground level has been raised. By now the clouds were thinning out and so was the "traffic". I was feeling happy and  getting confident....taking photos as I cycled along :0)


We had covered three miles by this point and it seemed like it should be quite easy to reach our goal of Parsley Hay........

The views just got better and better as we got higher. This one made me very happy.......I love that "on top of the world" feeling so much and the sky was wonderful............

If I zoom in a bit you can see the typically pointed hills you get in this area..........

The path may have looked and felt pretty flat, but we were gradually going uphill and heading into more exposed upland areas. Here the wind was so strong both youngest and myself decided to get off and walk for a while as we were scared of being blown off this embankment...........

It was lovely to see lambs in the fields below us......

The trail crosses over  many roads and gives you stunning views in all directions..........

But Oh, that wind. It blew my hair into my eyes and the noise got inside your head after a while. It made it hard to cycle in a straight line. You had to lean your bike into it at an angle, like you were permanently going around a bend.

 I like a fresh breeze, but this was something else. I know it looks calm in these photos, but appearances can be deceptive........

So I did another short video to let you see what it was really like. Sorry it's a bit rubbish but I was struggling to stand up, hanging on to my bike firmly to stop it getting blown over with one hand, while filming with the other...........

that black thing flapping across the picture is my camera strap.

Gosh it was such a relief to go through this high sided cutting. It was so calm and warm in here.....

Look at that wonderful blue sky, the impressive  bridge and walls of rock..........

On the other side we were back at the mercy of the wind. These sheep must be hardy souls. There were no signs of spring here and the grass looked less than lush........

By now we had been going for about one and a half hours. Then the Mr had a problem with his bike chain. This was not our day for trouble free cycling. We decided to abandon our planned destination and picnic right here instead. These flat rocks made an ideal spot and thankfully it was  quite sheltered......

I had just packed us some snacks , but at least they were enough to give us the energy for the return leg. Fruit, crisps and home-made cakes tasted great in that freshest of air.

I was cycling in a dress, you can just see a bit of it in this picture. Thankfully I was also wearing thick tights and a warm jacket. As we sat and picnicked many people passed us and said hello,  smiling broadly. How happy they are I thought. Then I realised they were probably amused by my crochet saddle cover.....I didn't mind, it's great to make folk smile don't you think........

On the return journey the wind was just as strong, but thankfully the going was ever so slightly down hill.
You really couldn't see it , and it felt strange to be free wheeling on what looked like a flat track.

Youngest kept saying " I don't remember this bit" I think he must have had his head down all the way there, and now the slope was with us he could finally look up and see the view...........

And what a view it was..........

Getting lower.........

The boys sped passed the Ice cream van, a more substantial snack, back at the car park, was on their mind

Just here Hubby's chain finally broke and I took in the view while he struggled to fix it........

This tree was just coming into bud.........

But most of the trees still looked bare, at least from this distance.........

As we descend, how different this valley is from the higher places. Lots of trees and hedges divide the fields down here.......

And cattle graze down by the river.........

This is one of my favourite photo's of the day. I love the afternoon light, the wall  and the barn surrounded by sheep...........

And here's another photo of that well used bench.......such a wonderful resting place..........

Back at the car park we loaded the bikes back into and on top of the car.........

Then ordered a hot snack from the excellent cabin........

The boys all had a sausage sandwich, but I had my usual toasted tea cake with a huge mug of tea........

We had covered about fourteen miles in total. It really was a cycle ride that I will remember for a long time and a great way to get my boys out into some stunning countryside.
I'd love to visit again in  summer.....and make sure it's not a windy day :0)

Well done if you made it to the end of this extra long post....this trip has been planned and talked  about for so many years  that I wanted to record it all here, to look back on.
Jacquie x

P.S. If you fancy cycling this route yourself, but need to hire bikes, you can start in Ashbourne as they have a a  HIRE SHOP right by the start of the trail.


  1. Well that looks like a lovely day, but that wind! I hate cycling in the wind it makes me grumpy!

  2. Lovely photos! This is my part of the world but if I'm honest, I'm not a big fan of the trails (or cycling!) as for me, they're flat and boring! I like wilder, rockier places :)

  3. Such a fabulous day out with the bikes, but oh my that wind.....walked in some like that!!
    Gorgeous pictures and thoroughly loved reading the whole post ☺

  4. What an absolutely wonderful spot. I do wish we had some good cycling places round here. I could hear that wind! You've inspired me, I'll be looking for our bike rack and somewhere to go riding locally.

  5. What a great ride! I think that people were looking at your saddle cover and wishing that they had one! The bits in the cuttings look lovely and warm, but I can imagine that it was colder than it looks in the pictures, the sunshine is deceptive sometimes isn't it! Glad that you had such a good time!! xx

  6. It looked to be a wonderful day out, it has been years since we have been on a family bike ride. I think we might have to dig the bike rack out. xx

  7. Fantastic photos of the day. How green the grass is. Have just made your bachelor buttons this morning. Posted pic on my Facebook page and linked back to you. Page called eclectichomelife

  8. We cycled the Tissington Trail back in March when we stayed in Ashbourne for my husband’s birthday. It was windy that day too, and rainy! It was great though. Seeing your photos brought back all sorts of memories. Thank you.

  9. It looks a great day - but perhaps one to be repeated on a calm sunny day. I like cycling in the New Forest along an old railway track - the flat route, and few roads, suits me. I also rather like a tea shop which has the most delicious cakes and hot chocolate which is about half way.
    I hope you are all enjoying the Easter holidays. Sara x

  10. What a wonderful post, it brought back some wonderful memories of times gone by with my own family. Unfortunately since my husbands diagnosis of stills disease we are unable to go bike riding, even a short stroll is sometimes too much unless we take the wheelchair. Have a great Easter.

  11. Gorgeous. Thank you so much. I enjoyed every minute of that beautiful outing. It brings back happy memories of times we have spent in the Peaks.

  12. Beautiful pictures, sounds like a really well spent day!
    And your bike looks so nice with the crocheted seat :)
    Thanks for sharing your life adventures.

  13. Oh my, what a glorious countryside!(Remind my very much of West Virginia here in the US.) Thanks so much for sharing it looks like a wonderful ride, minus the wind.

  14. thanks for sharing Jacquie! You certainly had more than your fair share of cycling situations. This is one ride I would love to do. Maybe one day! :)

  15. Wow and wow again and again. Thank you so much for taking your camera along on this ride through such magnificent countryside. The views are amazing. Yes, I can definitely tell that the wind was really fierce! Guess that was helping to provide the bright blue sky!


  16. Jackie, I love your seat cover. How well do you find it is withstanding the friction/pressure during the beautiful cycle rides you take? Is it felting much?

  17. I love exploring in places like this. I think I would have tried to camp out half way and then finish on day two or three. QUESTION: Just how long is this railroad bed and how much of it are you allowed to access?

  18. I always love seeing your adventure pictures. Your country is so beautiful!

  19. Thanks for sharing your wonderful photos and bike ride. I must say that video made me feel cold just watching it. Brave you cycling in a skirt....not for me as I usually fall off my bike at some point, x

  20. What a lovely post. I've often thought about doing the trail but never seem to get the time when I am there and I'm also not much of a cyclist. I adore the Peak and am most envious of you being there. Love the little vid as it conveys the power of that wind so much more than words can.

  21. Gorgeous landscapes! I'd love to visit the English countryside one day! :)

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  23. What a ride, looks amazing, I love been out in open country side. It was very windy here in Yorkshire , I had gone looking for frogs like you do on a Sunday morning...but just got blown about...
    Amanda x

  24. That photo and beautiful landscapes ... great inspiration for painting, thank you for sharing!

  25. This is simply one of the most stunning posts I've seen Jacquie, thank you for taking so many photos and sharing them with us. You do live in one of the most beautiful countries in the world, a place I've visited twice and could quite happily visit time after time if I could. Cycling with those views, WOW, what a treat.
    Anne xx

  26. Your photos are beautiful and clear. Your countryside is so verdant - such a different landscape to mine. Fascinating. When walking in the wind, even when it is fierce and stinging in my face, I feel that I am truly alive. It can be invigorating, and I can enjoy it especially when I know there is a warm cup of tea or hot chocolate to greet me at the end of the outing! Thank you for sharing your tours with us.


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