Burbage Edge looking to Higger Tor, Derbyshire
The last day of September…and what a great month it has turned out to be. A month of the best and most consistent weather and a marked contrast to the rest of the summers weather. Lots of sunshine and very dry.
So to make the most of this late summer bonus we headed of to the moors. The low bright sunshine cast long shadows which added to the contrast in colours on the moor, colours very different from a few weeks ago. The Heather has lost its colour, the flower heads now turned to seed and foliage turning dark brown, the Bracken has dried and in the warm sun has now turned a rich copper brown which in turn contrast to the greys of the Gritstone rocks that make up the geology of this part of the moor and rocky edge.
Expansive views are the reward for walking the edge, views that take in Carl Wark an Iron age camp on top of a promontory in the near foreground, Higger Tor and Fiddlers Elbow beyond and then to the wider Pennines along the far horizon…..
Wild as these moors are they were like most of Derbyshire, they were once scenes of much and varied industrial activity taking advantage of the counties natural resources…in this case the Gritstone Rock. last week I posted an image of Padley Gorge that featured an abandoned Millstone (https://davidoakesimages.wordpress.com/2015/09/23/wordless-wednesday-another-favourite-place-52/)
I tried to explain to comments made why it was there, where did it come to be there. Well take a look at the rock to the right of this image. Spot the centre hole and the rough circle partly shaped into a wheel. The natural incline of the geology along the edge made for easy selection of suitable rocks which were then carved out in-situ. Many were abandoned when the French invented a new style of mill grinding wheel. But Mill wheels were not the only use to which the stone was used and traces of other activity can be found.
Farm Water Troughs were also hewn by hand from large pieces of Gritstone. But just imagine the frustration for these workmen that after many long arduous hours of work the stone splits….I guess no pay that week for the stonemasons…
But for us the day was soon over and it was down off the moor through some sparse woodland in yet another of natures wonderful rock gardens…..
(C) David Oakes 2015