Southern Peak

Lathkill Dale with a pushchair

Yesterday morning, rather than sitting on the rug googling minor ailments as I do on way too many mornings, OJ and I got out of the house early and drove up to Lathkill Dale, near Bakewell, for a pyjama walk. Well, he was in his pyjamas – I at least threw on some clothes for the kilometre or so stroll along a wheelchair-friendly path from Conkesbury Bridge. I’d have never gotten up early for a walk in the past, but I guess early rising is one of the great things having a baby teaches you to do!

It was one of those beautiful autumn mornings that makes you feel like your whole life is on the edge of some monumental change. And of course I have no doubt this winter will be very different to the last few – our ski touring kit, for example, will almost certainly be staying packed away in the loft. But this walk made me feel like we were at the start of some other kind of excitement. OJ is six months now, and starting to be interested in the world around him (he’s doubly interested in ducks… and triply so when we sing the ducky song too). Slowing right down and looking at things with baby eyes is a magical thing to do. So at the moment, I can’t wait for the walks and rides we’ll have together over the next year or two. To think I’d have sniffed at this walk a year or two ago – get up early, open your eyes, and it turns out it’s just as beautiful as a big tough mountain walk!

  • AREA: Bakewell
  • DISTANCE: Less than a mile
  • FACILITIES: No facilities, but wheelchair/puschair friendly anda great spot for a picnic
  • PARKING: 50m up the hill on the Over Haddon side of the bridge
  • GRADIENT: Flat
  • TERRAIN: Graded gravel path
  • OS MAP: White Peak

The Lathkill river near Conkesbury Bridge

The Lathkill river near Conkesbury Bridge

  1. From the parking, walk down the hill to the bridge. Go through the gate on your right and follow the good gravel path upstream beside the river until you reach a stile. Return by the same route.

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