views from High Tor's lofty heights. In Victorian times the summit housed
a privately owned pleasure garden.
We took a walk through time on Otober 16th.
Take a look at the pictures.
The owners used to charge the public to visit the gardens and the view
points, even if you took the alternative route and actually climbed the
rock face. It's possible the area is still beautiful and preserved because
it wasn't used as a general thoroughfare.
the base of High Tor, head towards matlock now.
corner and Lover's Leap each offer beautiful views.
To the right
there are glorious views of Riber Castle. The
castle dominates the country side around Matlock.
High Tor was once known as Eagle Crag, this is because Fish Eagles used
to nest here.
It is perched
on a hill 260 metres (850 feet) above sea level. Gothic and forbidding
this grand old building which currently stands empty would not look out
of place in a horror movie.
and built by John Smedley it's made from local gritstone.
Plants to spot
seal (Polygonatum biflorum)
Wood Fescue (Festuca altissima)
Ladies Bed Straw (Galium verum).
remained derelict for many years until, in the 1960s, a group of zoologists
set up a nature reserve. The centre closed in 2000 and more recent developments
could lead to Riber Castle being revamped as luxury apartments.
During its time as a Zoo Riber played home to birds, otters, lynx, goats
and reptiles as well as wallabies and peccaries - musk hogs similar to
wild boar generally found in deserts.
rumour suggests that a mischievous group of wallabies escaped the confines
of the zoo and sought refuge in the woods around Matlock and Matlock Bath
so keep your eyes peeled for some cute marsupials on your walk.
Local Geology expert Robin Jeffcoats tells us more about High Tor.
as Robin talks the talk as we walk the walk
grassy path now down towards Matlock's Victorian parks. You'll pass through
a gate (see picture above), turn left here and head down into the valley
under stone bridges.
This is a perfect spot to see the limestone from a different angle. As
you walk along the bottom of the cliffs you can peer up at the impressive
Eventually you'll come to a well kept grassy area, make your way towards
the stone pillar, then up the stone steps and over the small bridge. Turn
left and walk towards the parks.