It is amazing to think that in under an hour you can be in the depth of the countryside. So heading for a Buxton circular walk with Northern as your chauffeur is not a shabby way to spend the day. (grab the walk details here)
When I have a cold brewing, I swear by getting outside and taking in some fresh air. It not only blows the cobwebs away, but the snot too! (TMI?) Heading out to Buxton was the perfect excuse to wrap up and head for the hills too. It also fortunately gave me the time and space to work on a new project that I’m launching; Refill Manchester. But I’m sure I’ll share more about that in another post. In the meantime, do check it out and give it a like on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.
The train to Buxton leaves from Piccadilly and takes under an hour to get there. Which meant I could get some work done while pondering my ideas and peering out of the window at the autumnal scenes.
I have been to Buxton a few times, but the most memorable was when I skived a day from my volunteering placement as the sun was shining on a crisp winter day. Seriously, it was too nice to miss out on, especially with the alternative being in a cold damp basement. Most recently, we were there to have a go at GoApe. Anyway, I have fond memories of that trip. The walking route I was taking would take me past the places I have visited before as well as some newly trodden paths.
Starting the Buxton Circular walk from the station
I find that walks that start and finish at the train station are perfect for day hikes as you don’t have to mess around trying to get back to your transport – or your walk starting point for that matter. So arriving into Buxton Station and starting right from there was perfect.
It seemed that Autumn had certainly arrived in Buxton. Having left Manchester with only a few trees starting to get their amber colour I was quite surprised to see how many crunchy brown and orange leaves there were on the floor and drifting from the trees.
The walk takes you through a part of the main town and past the university. Then leads you towards the large circular park. This is where the autumnal feeling really kicked in. The mist also began to settle on the horizon too, which made for some interesting views into the hills.
Golf courses and farms
One thing that I always ind quite amusing about many walks in the countryside is how often you end up taking part of the route through golf courses. Not because it is particularly funny, but because it is kind of strange where they crop up. I always have this urge to cough or shout when they are swinging for the ball, but I have seen the clips where things go wrong so manage to restrain myself!
Anyway, the golf course on my Buxton circular walk was leading me up to Beet Wood through some farmland where I was able to make friends with the resident animals.
Even with the mist rolling in, the views over the fields, hills and valleys were enough to keep you staring into the distance. I personally felt it gave the day a more atmospheric feel (or so I kept telling myself when the clouds would darken and it felt as though they were going to drop their load!)
Strangely enough, I do seem to end up in places with beautiful distant views when it is misty (see here and here!) It was nice to still be able to see some final pops of summer colour though in the Hydrangea in the gardens on my way to the path.
I love getting out and exploring places because you never know what unexpected surprises you might find along the way. As I was wandering down the hill towards the next farm on my route, I was overjoyed to spot some of what I can only describe as the best topiary ever! Now I am no expert in topiary, I can create a mean sphere, but these must have taken some work! Even the lamps are plants too!
After my short interlude of awe looking at the topiary (and their unusual fluffy geese) I was back on track and walking along the track again. The route took me up a hill and towards the old dismantled railway line. A fantastic long straight path with (kind of) views into the distance through the mist. The puddles made for some fun detours up the banks and a hop, skip and jump to avoid the big ones when grabbing a photograph and not looking at where I was going.
Over hills and into valleys
Even though I have been to Hay-on-Wye and walked a great length of the river while there, I never realised that it reached all the way up to Buxton! (only kidding! There are three River Wye in the UK) I have since discovered that the Welsh one is the fifth longest river in the UK at a length of 215 km! The Derbyshire one is actually only 24 km long. Now there’s a fact for you. So when my walk was taking me down into the valley to follow the path of the Wye, I did actually wonder why – see how your curiosity goes everywhere with you?
Down in the valley, it was quite eerie when I discovered the disused railway arch. Alone in the valley, faced with the large dark hole, I really felt quite small. I did go over to peer in and give a quick hello into the hole. The echo was slightly disappointing (probably due to the grass) so I headed along my way to the river.
I love coming across unloved and seemingly forgotten things (if you see my Instagram stories, you’ll know I have a passion for these kinds of things! Finding the beauty in the unloved and overlooked) When I came across this old wood shed. Tinged with green and the roof falling in, but interesting and exciting to peer through and enjoy. It think the experience was even better as I could listen to the sounds of the river rushing by while standing and taking a moment for myself.
As I came to the end of my Wye follwing, I was treated with the most vivid orange colour. The minerals in the water must have been strong. It looked so out-of-place with the green leaves framing it from the path. I have seen some coloured rivers before, but never one so brilliantly bright!
To Grin Low and Solomon’s Temple
Once I had crossed over the river, I started making my way up to Grin Low country park to head up to Solomon’s temple. If you remember back in July when I went to GoApe, I took a trip up to Solomon’s Temple then too. It was interesting to see the area in a different light and to come in from an alternative angle too.
ON my way in through the entrance, I met with some very friendly and confident sheep. They even posed for a few photographs en route too. Of course, being the animal lover that I am, I obliged them in a photoshoot.
To get to Solomon’s Temple, you follow the path up and past the caravan site (a very nice one, I have to say! Makes me fancy getting a caravan so that I can stay there… like I need another reason to check them out?) Anyway, as you near the top of the winding path, you will spot Solomon’s Temple in the distance over the undulating hummocks of greener.
At 439 metres above sea level, you can see how it is worth walking up the hill to check out the views. Unfortunately, due to the untimely mist, the views weren’t so visible, but the walk was enjoyable all the same. To find out more about the temple and Poole’s Cavern (which is still on our list) visit this website.
After taking in the views of the mist and feeling slightly defeated by the wind taking my breath away at the top of the tower, I headed down into the country park for some respite. Autumn is a great time to get out into the woods as there is so much fungus growing in the damp shaded areas. I love seeing how many different types of toadstool I can spot – even if I can’t identity them properly.
The winding path takes you through the woods and back down to the road. If you’re lucky, you might get to hear the squeals of delight from some people having a go at GoApe. There wasn’t anyone on it when I was there, but I thoroughly enjoy the sounds of fear and joy when there are people there.
Through the park
The last leg of my Buxton circular walk was through the park on the way to the Opera House. There are plenty of paved routes to take and all of them will eventually lead you to the Opera House to take you back towards the station. The autumnal feel didn’t stop in the streets either. The grass was scattered with a confetti of leaves and the birds were resting beside them.
My Buxton circular walk was certainly beneficial for helping me forget about my brewing cold and my snotty nose. I barely noticed that I was a bit under the weather until I reached my door. I am definitely a strong believer and advocate that the fresh air and exercise is good for getting over a cold – even if it’s just a wander in the park or through town.
If you fancy taking a virtual wander on the Buxton circular walk, then check out my video. You’ll even get some added snippets from my train journey and see how strong the wind really was at the top of Solomon’s Temple! (I also share some views from when we were there in July)
Very soon, the details for the Buxton Circular Walk will be available on the Northern website, so check back for the link. (Grab the walking description and pictures here – why not book your train tickets at the same time) It is a great walk of around 7.5 miles on paved areas, through valleys and over grassy hills. Varied with lots to see, so perfect for year round wandering. I am now looking forward to doing it again in the springtime to see how it changes.
I am so glad that we get a proper autumn. There’s nothing like a walk in the crunch leaves with the fresh, cool, air on your face. Now I can’t wait for my evening miles!
Have you ever walked around Buxton? Do you reckon you’d love this Buxton circular walk?
How about Autumn? Are you a fan too?
Let me know in the comments below
Disclosure: This is a sponsored post for Northern. I received compensation for writing this post. However, as always, all photographs, content and opinions are honest and my own.