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Phortse Team

Chrome Hill, Peak District
3rd January 1999

The walk around Chrome Hill in the White Peak was more of a social gathering than a serious training weekend. With day sacks and a pic-nic we set off from Longnor car park on a cold and frosty January morning.

Chrome Hill
The dragons back

The gathering had brought people from all areas of the country including friends of friends of the Himalayan Hands team.

A short walk out of the village and we had Chrome Hill in view. Looking like the back of a dragon or stegosaurus its spiky double hump rears out of the surrounding landscape before submerging again into some subterranean depths.

As you get closer you realise that the space between the two humps forms a natural gateway into a round enclosed valley beyond and a single spire of rock juts away from one side of the hill to act as a sentry to the gate.

Standing Tall

The climb up the dragons back was steep but rapid, and with the sun still low in the sky the frosted grass took on the glitter of gem stones. Where the sun had fallen on the grass for some time, the frost had melted away leaving a stark dividing line of white and green along the dragon back between sunlight and shadow. Like conquering heroes we crowded around the top of the hill, standing tall in the clear blue sky above a stark white and green landscape.

Icy Ridge

Sliding down the spiny ridge and off the tail we moved on and away from Chrome Hill and headed off across the limestone countryside. Up hill and down dale we travelled until finally coming to rest for some much needed food in Earl Sterndale.

Earl Sterndale is a village famous (to those of us in the know anyway) for its pub the Silent Woman and the pork pies it sells. Walkers are always welcome and a good strong cup of tea can be had just as easily as a pint of bitter.

Sunset in the White Peak

Stuffed full of pork pie we headed off once more skirting the oddly angular hill of High Wheeldon that could be mistaken for a man made pyramid from one side, and headed off up the river Dove. Past ancient ruins and forts we travelled through history till with the day drawing to a close, the sunset began to spread across the evening sky.

Finishing the walk as night fell we arrived back in Longnor after a perfect day. Chrome Hill now established as one of my favourite walks.