Wednesday 31 March 2010

It’s a Dog’s Life Life through the eyes of Scrambles, a Belper-based Cairn Terrier

Not a great deal to talk about this time around. Our Mum hasn’t taken us anywhere exciting, nothing horrendous has happened to us (but give us time) – well actually that’s not quite true I didn’t fall in the river but …

We were out walking on Eyes Meadow one bright cold morning. As we were charging along the path a couple of ducks flew out in front of me. Being the well behaved hounds that we are I decided they needed to be chased. I am sure I heard my Mum calling, but something she calls ‘selective hearing’ kicked in and I momentarily forgot what “come here” meant!

Off I ran. I jumped in the river after the duck and then halfway up the river decided I didn’t actually like swimming and as I was well out of my depth I panicked. I headed for the nearest bank thinking I would climb up but it was too steep so I clung on for dear life and started to feel very afraid - and I’m embarrassed to admit that I whimpered a bit.

My daft Mum was yelling at me to come back to her but there was no chance I was going to risk getting into that water again and I was getting very frightened. Even Chaos came a little way in but didn’t venture any further.

Our Mum finally decided that I was indeed going to have to be rescued so she peeled off her boots and socks and rolled up her trousers and climbed into the river to get to me. She was saying not very nice words at the time and she has threatened to take me to something called ‘the pound’ if I say what she said. Something to do with the water being very cold and owning an extremely intelligent, clever and brave wee doggie – well that’s what I heard anyway!

Then she decided that instead of trying to pick me up that she would drag me into the water and make me swim back so she grabbed my collar, yanked me into the water (like I needed another dip that morning), and I had to swim back to Chaos who was very worried.

We charged off to dry off in the grass. I did get lots of hugs in between getting told off for chasing ducks. Our Mum’s feet were a very peculiar shade of blue but we did our best to lick the water off them and get them dry for her and I let her know that I was very, very sorry. Our Mum and the air over Eyes Meadow were definitely a little blue that morning.

And just to show you how nice our Mum can be (once she stopped shivering), she even, after getting her socks and boots back on, continued with our walk so we could have more fun. We were however warned that we were going to be glue if we jumped in the river again – not sure what glue is but I suspect this threat is not something we should look forward to with undiluted joy and abandon.

I was very frightened, Chaos was very worried, and our Mum was really annoyed with me, but I think she was just pleased to have me back safe and sound and on solid ground.

I don’t think I will be chasing any more ducks anytime soon though. Oh gotta go -just seen a rabbit that needs chasing!

Happy Hunting

Scrambles xx

(taken from the April / May 2010 issues of All Things Local. The Community Magazine for Kilburn, Belper and RIpley.

Wednesday 10 March 2010

Bodegas Ramon Bilbao - wine review

From the pen of Anne Kennedy - Kilburn Wine Circle

I am currently sitting in my study, looking out on the frozen snow lying on the drive, reflecting back on the festive activities and wondering what the new decade will bring.

December has been an exciting month, seeing a lot of social activity with friends and family. This of course included trying many different wines. At Kilburn Wine Circle we were celebrating the club’s 30th anniversary in December, so decided to have a fine wine evening. When we were discussing the event earlier in the year, the committee had a debate about what makes for a ‘fine’ wine and all agreed that it is the more unusual and frequently more expensive wines. As a result, this was what we tasted at our celebration evening.

We had a very enjoyable meeting, but evenings like this reinforce for me that it is more important to enjoy the wine, than for it to be a well known brand or an expensive wine. It is all about your own personal taste, so by developing your knowledge about wines it helps you to decide what grapes, countries, brands etc you do or don’t like and as a result make better wine choices when shopping.

There are many books available to give you more information about wines and wine merchants will frequently have wine available to try. We had a visit to Red Zebra on Iron Gate in Derby, which is now open as a Wine Bar; this gives you the opportunity to try different wines in more social surroundings. We also had a visit to Majestic Wine Warehouse on Ashbourne Road, Derby, before Christmas and had the opportunity to try the six wines they had on display.

We brought a number of wines from Majestic, one of them being the wine I will tell you about this month, as I particularly enjoyed this one over the festive season.

Brand: Bodegas Ramon Bilbao
Type: Single Vineyard, Rioja
Region: Haro, Spain
Year: 2007
Grape: Tempranillo and Garnacha
Alcohol Strength: 13.5%
Style: Medium bodied red
Bouquet: Intensely fruity bouquet, reminiscent of ripe cherries and strawberries
Flavour: Rich, velvety and complex, well structured with a long and pleasant finish.
Price: £7.99 (£6.49 when buying two bottles), Majestic Wine. (NB. Majestic have a policy of a minimum sale of six bottles. These can be different wines).

This wine is ideal with red meats, stews or cheese.

Wednesday 3 March 2010

The Edges - Curbar Edge from Baslow Edge

The Edges

Walk supplied by Angela Clarke of Belper

Start: Curbar Gap car park (SK 2624 7470) Limited free roadside parking.
Route: Curbar Gap car park - White Edge – Grouse Inn – Froggatt Edge – Curbar Edge – Curbar Gap car park

Map: Explorer OL 24: The Peak District White Peak Area

Distance: 5.5 miles   

Terrain: Good paths.

Refreshments: Grouse Inn. In summer afternoons there is usually an ice cream van in the car park.

Toilets: None. There are toilets at the Grouse Inn but you must be a customer to use them.

Curbar Edge from Baslow Edge
This is a gentle walk that takes in White, Froggatt and Curbar Edges and is a firm favourite of mine. If, like me, you like to enjoy your walks without too many people around try to do this walk during the week and set out as early as possible. Having walked the route many times I have chosen to do it in an anti-clockwise direction because I think this way round the views are much better.

Take the gate to the left of the car park entrance and follow the obvious path straight ahead.
When the wall on your left ends the path splits, continue straight ahead. The path takes you across moorland towards White Edge, the ridge that is dominating the view ahead of you.

Descend to a wooden bridge and then climb again following the wall, which is now to your left.
When the wall turns left follow it taking the signed and clear path to White Edge.

You soon reach the summit of White Edge, which is marked by a trig point. Although the trig point is only just off the main path it is worth visiting as from there you get the best views across Big Moor away to your right.
Follow the easy path for two miles along the top of White Edge. Immediately below is Stoke Flat whilst the distant views are dominated by Win Hill to the left and Higger Tor to the right. As you walk along the ridge Stanage Edge will also come into view.

Eventually the path will come to a wall. Having gone through the gap in the wall turn left (signed Grouse Inn) and follow it downhill.

After a short rocky section you reach the edge of a small wood. Ignore the signed bridleway coming in on the right and continue downhill, through the wood, to reach a gate.

Having gone through the gate and negotiated the often very wet ground by it, head across the field to the gate, on the left, which is closest to the pub.

Turn left and remaining on this side of the road, unless of course you wish to visit the Grouse Inn, follow the road downhill. This can be a busy road but the wide grass verges make it relatively safe to walk along.

Just after passing a parking area/lay-by, on the left hand side of the road, take the gate on the left to follow the signed public footpath.

Follow the clear track uphill, through the wood, to another gate shortly after which the views open up again. Below you are the villages of Grindleford and Curbar. Across the valley Longstone Edge the limestone edge that has recently been saved from destruction by quarrying is visible.

The route is now obvious as you follow the path along the top of the edges until you meet the metal gate at the far end of the edges.

Whilst you can easily stick to the main path the best views of the edges are gained by following the narrow and at times vague path, which ventures closer to the edge of the rocks. As there is a steep drop below do take care and keep young children under close supervision.

This area is popular with climbers and scramblers so please be careful not to dislodge anything or allow children to throw things over the edge, as there could be someone on the rocks below you.

Even if you don’t follow the edge path do make sure you head across the rocks to the edge as you approach the end of the path to enjoy the view of Baslow Edge. At the metal gate turn left to return to the car park.

We have taken reasonable steps to ensure that this walk is safe and achievable by walkers of a realistic level of fitness. The publisher accepts no responsibility for any injuries caused to readers whilst following the walk. Always wear appropriate clothing and footwear.