All words and photography © Nina Nixon
It never ceases to amaze me, the feat of engineering and the great enormity of effort that goes into the construction of such magnificent architectural structures. Especially when you can get up really close and blow your mind at the grand scale of it all. Wondering how such impressive building works could ever be achieved.
With time though, their needs change and what was once made out of necessity is now used for pleasure.
Old railway tracks that are now walkable cycle paths and canals that ferried great industry are now enjoyed by ramblers alike. But in the 1870s John Ruskin campaigned against it because of the damage it would do to the environment simply 'so that any fool from Bakewell can be in Buxton by lunchtime'.
Monsal Head in Derbyshire's Peak District situated not far from Chatsworth House is now a local beauty spot enjoyed by all. Park at the top, the views command to be appreciated. Then chose a path.
You can walk down to the viaduct and across the grand structure. Depending on your fancy, you can head to either Buxton or Bakewell.
Or take the path that heads down under the viaduct and along the Dale, which is a beautiful gentle walk and stunning at any time of the year. We opted to walk a circular path, so headed under the viaduct first then across the dale and back over again.
Take a picnic, a bike or your walking boots. You will be in for a treat no matter what direction you choose.
Monsal Dale is situated just off the B6465 which joins the A6 at Ashford.