Monday, 3 February 2014

A few facts about... the Limestone Way, the Monsal Trail, the Dane Valley Way and the Cheshire Ring Canal Walk (Footpaths Nos. 10, 11, 12 & 13)

After Big Dave leaves the Derbyshire Portway his travels will take him on to The Limestone Way.
The Limestone Way is a long-distance bridleway in Derbyshire. It runs through the White Peak of the Peak District National Park, from Castleton south east to Rocester over the county boundary in Staffordshire.
The entire length of the Limestone Way is 46 miles (74 km) but Big Dave’s route will only follow the Way past Peak Forest, down the valleys of Hay Dale and Peter Dale, parallel to Monks Dale then through the village of Millers Dale, a popular beauty spot in the Peak District of England, much of the area being preserved as a Site of Special Scientific Interest.
From Millers Dale Big Dave sharply heads west along the Monsal Trail. The Monsal Trail is about 8.5 miles (13.7 km) in length. It starts at the Topley Pike junction (in Wye Dale, 3 miles (4.8 km) east of Buxton) and runs to Coombs viaduct, 1 mile (1.6 km) south-east of Bakewell. It follows the valley of the River Wye and runs parallel to the A6. Big Dave’s trek takes him from Millers Dale along the River Wye, through the Chee Tor tunnels and along Chee Dale.
The route then breaks from the Monsal Trail and head north-west up the Wye Dale before turning west into Buxton. Buxton is a spa town in Derbyshire and has the highest elevation of any market town in England. It is also located close to the county boundary with Cheshire to the west and Staffordshire to the south, leading to it being described as "the gateway to the Peak District National Park.” Of course, Big Dave will be using this “gateway” as an exit as he heads out of Buxton to the south through the Grin Woods and up Grin Low.
From there the route follows the Dane Valley Way to Three Shire Heads on Axe Edge Moor, the point where Cheshire, Derbyshire and Staffordshire meet; and then onwards through Forest Wood, past Danebridge and Hanging Stone Hill.
The route leaves the Dane Valley Way just north of a hill named The Cloud where the route joins onto the Cheshire Ring Canal Walk. 
Big Dave will follow the Cheshire Ring Canal Walk from the Macclesfield Canal skirting Buglawton and Congleton, southwest past Church Lawton towards Kidsgrove, but turning northwest before he reaches the town, along the Trent & Mersey Canal through Thurlwood until it reaches Malkins Bank... where a good pub may need to be located!
Can you spare a few quid in support of the MS Society, Macmillan Cancer Support and Help for Heroes?

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