Sunday, 6 October 2013

Cave Dale, Mam Tor and some proper Milkshakes

Welcome back, Blog Fans.  You may have noticed the postings aren't coming out like clockwork.  Work is unusually hectic right now for both Kuk and me.  On top of that, we are putting the wheels in motion to return back to the States for good in December.  Lots to do.  Stress levels are certainly up.

That said, it would be absolutely criminal not to get out on a weekend like this one.  Sunny, blue skies and temps of 15C or higher (low 60s F).  The kids and I saw Kuk off to the airport and then we headed out ourselves.

The destination was Castleton (again).  We've covered the area fairly well, but two other ex-pat families went to Cave Dale in the last few weeks though so we thought we try it out.

Our previous two trips to Castleton specifically were raining so it was nice to get some sun.

Our previous walk (link) was the magenta line above whereas we tried the blue this time.  It involved heading south through Cave Dale, across some fields and then up Mam Tor before heading back to town.

As a reminder, we like this area.  Check out all the walks we've done in the vicinity.
Finally the stats before the photos:  5.9 miles in 2:43 with 2:22 moving.  (ahem, slightly faster than our normal pace -- who wasn't with us?).  We had a slow and steady climb at first.  The blip 2/3 the way through is Mam Tor.  Six miles is a nice walk for us now.  Long enough to feel like we've done something but it doesn't wipe us out (like the 9-milers).

On to the photos:

Good start.  Friendly cat in Castleton before getting too far.

 at the beginning of Cave Dale . . . still a slight chill in the shade, but the jackets would eventually come off

looking back after a partial climb -- that's some of Perevil Castle on the left.  We visited the castle and some of the surrounding caves two years ago (almost exactly) -- link.  We must like this time of year for Castleton as our previous walk was almost exactly a year ago as well.

and further up with a view through the dale and back to the valley where we started

some obligatory sheep shots for my buddy Jay

 lunch time (for the sheep -- the food truck just drove by)

must be hard going through life as BS (actually the sheep were all marked RS but this one had an unfortunate run on the R)

cows -- equal opportunity photographer

nearly there -- a short catch of our breathe before the final ascent

 a view to the other side and the snaking road that leads to Edale

kids in front of the Edale/Hope valley

back towards Castleton

 and one with the kids -- great weather, isn't it?

not a particularly glamorous shot of the Hope Valley but I wanted to compare/contrast it to one of my favorite photos from last year:

the blue skies are nice but its hard to beat the rainbow (from 2012)

back in the valley looking back to Mam Tor

We were feeling nostalgic and noticed an American diner themed restaurant in Castleton so we wandered in.  Kids had burgers.  Theme or not, I wasn't quite ready to go there.  (They met the kids standards, but glad I opted for chicken).

Side note:  Alex was like "Cool, they have an actual Juice Box".   Uh, Juke Box, Alex.  "oh"  :-)

But the real treat was "proper" milkshakes with, you know, ice cream in it.  (Most of the "milkshakes" here are flavored milk).  These were still a touch thin, but all and all pretty good.  A worthy stop.

So, a great day with my great kids doing what we like to do.  How many more of these, if any, will we get?

Have a great week everyone.