Today’s walk was led by Dave Ty, his first walk for the Weekend Wanderers.  When all had boarded the coach in Doncaster Jean had some announcements.  New walkers, Janice, Shelley, Liz, Sue, Mark and Trisha were welcomed and returning walker, Sandra, was also welcomed back to the group.  Jean T also thanked Dave and Jan W for taking over the blog from Dave C who had admirable reported the group’s travels for 6 years.  Jean went on to remind everyone to be back to the coach in Bakewell for 3.00 pm in time for the start of the Bring and Buy Sale.

Leaving Doncaster,  all 43 members on board the coach were optimistic that the heavy rain forecast for the day wouldn’t materialise, but at the start of the 8.75 mile linear walk, beginning at Baslow, the weather had deteriorated into light rain.  Following a quick coffee and comfort stop, 37 walkers got kitted up in wet weather gear and heads down, into the wind and rain, set off from Baslow at 09.45 am.  6 non-walkers were dropped of in Bakewell for a day browsing the shops and frequenting the many eating and drinking establishments in an effort to stay dry.

The walk began in Chatsworth Park,  past the historic Chatsworth House, following the course of the River Derwent along the Derwent Valley Heritage Way.  Along the way a herd of Fallow and Red deer were spotted and a photograph has been published in today’s gallery.  Passing through the tiny hamlet of Carlton Lees, and onwards through the relentless rain, the group sought refuge for lunch in the Peak Village shopping outlet at Rowsley or for those seeking alcoholic refreshment the Grouse and Claret pub awaited.  Our youngest walker little Lewis, by lunchtime was suffering with wet feet.  However after lunch he proudly showed off his new wellies, a much needed purchase by his grandma and granddad.   Following a welcome rest and respite from the rain, the group left Rowsley, heading back towards Bakewell walking uphill past a recently felled piece of woodland that had now been replanted with young saplings.  Looking across the valley, the village of Stanton in the Peak could be seen shrouded in mist and cloud.  Pheasants and a nuthatch were spotted along the way, with Dave W catching glimpse of a buzzard hovering over Bowling Green Farm.

The walk continued through the Haddon Estate and a veteran Ash Tree, see Information Board in the gallery for more details around the conservation work being undertaken by Derbyshire Wildlife Trust and the Peak District National Park Authority.  Following the course of the River Wye, the group arrived back wet and exhausted at Bakewell at 3.00 pm.

Back at the coach, due to the bad weather, J & J had to set up donations of walking clothes and equipment for the bring and buy sale in the luggage compartment of the coach.  Although it was difficult to display items for sale very attractively, Jean T reported that £40 had been raised for the club funds and thanked members for their kind donations for sale and support in purchasing items.  A further sale will be held later in the year – hopefully in better weather.

Leaving Bakewell around 4.00 pm. Dave Ty was thanked for his walk, and although a rather soggy affair, it was enjoyed by the group and a success for his first time as a walk leader.