Peak District Photography – Landscapes at Stanage Edge

Millstones at Stanage Edge

This morning I ventured out of the house nice and early to head off to Stanage Edge in the Peak District. A 5am start was in order for the 1 hour 45 minute drive to Derbyshire in order to (hopefully) get a nice sunrise!

For the past few days I’d been checking the weather forecast, and researching the sunrise times and direction using The Photographers Ephemeris. The weather, especially for this time of year, was volatile but promising – and from experience I know that it can make for some great photos! On the drive over however it rained. A lot. I was starting to worry that it may be a wasted trip.

I shouldn’t have worried though, just as I was approaching the area where I had arranged to meet a fellow photographer and friend there was no sign of rain… instead there was a light dusting of snow!

We started the trek up to the top of Stanage Edge at around 7:15am, leaving us plenty of time to find a spot for sunrise.

On the Edge at Stanage

Early results were solid, if not spectacular. As it was still pretty dark, long exposures were the order of the day. Even at this time though, strong filtration was needed to keep the detail in the sky whilst getting a good exposure on the snowy rocks and bracken around us.

But I wasn’t entirely happy with the results and kept looking for an alternative location.

The sun finally broke through the cloud layer and started throwing some lovely pink hues on the underside of the higher clouds – at this point it was essential that I found a good location.

Peering over the edge, I spotted some old millstones a bit further down the edge. Climbing down with camera and tripod in hand, I quickly set up, composed and got my photograph.

Millstones at Stanage Edge

Millstones at Sunrise at Stanage Edge

The light and hues were beautiful and made the climb down worth it. After firing off a few shots I scrambled back up to the top to let my friend know where I’d been hiding. As he ventured off in that direction I collected my equipment from where I’d abandoned it and found myself a shallower path down the peak over to a lone millstone where I took the photo at the top of the page.

Before too long the sun had risen too high and the clouds had disappeared leaving no interest in the sky so we packed up and ventured off home.

All in all, a nice, productive morning – and another location explored!