The Tissington Trail is part of the National Cycle Network. It runs along a disused railway (as all the best do) built in 1899, that goes from Ashbourne to Buxton.
We decided to hire a bike from Ashbourne Cycle hire. Our favourite mode of transport is the tandem. This has several benefits over it’s shorter, one person cycle, in that you can;

  • Talk to your companion all the time because you’re always occupying the same bit of the cycle path
  • Share the workload of pedalling (usually)
  • Reduce the chances of arguing about which way to go, because the person on the front is steering (again, usually)

We’ve mentioned before about the advantage of disused railway lines being pretty flat. In this case, that’s not wholly true. This trail runs pretty much due north from Ashbourne and uphill for 13 miles.
We’d planned to visit Tissington village, where the well dressing was, as the trail runs right past it. Oh and because it’s got a proper old tea shop that serves tea in leaf form and fantastic cake! 🙂
Once refuelled, we continued our uphill trek, stopping to enjoy the view (aka taking a rest) on several occasions.
After 13 miles we reached Parsley Hay, the head of the trail to have lunch. It may have ‘only’ been a small kiosk type affair, but we had the best paninis we’ve had for years. None of your pre-packed, dried up, cardboard affairs with indeterminate fillings, but a fresh, tasty panini with a yummy bacon and brie filling 🙂

Now I’m not the greatest mathematician, but I’m of the opinion that if we’ve cycled 13 miles in one direction up a trail, we’ve got to cycle 13 miles on the way back. Surely a total of 26 miles. Not according to Helen logic.
As we’d cycled uphill all the way to Parsley Hay, it was obviously downhill all the way back to Ashbourne. In fact, it was so downhill we actually free-wheeled for about 10 of the 13 miles on the return journey 🙂
This led Helen to make the observation that we hadn’t in fact ‘cycled’ 26 miles as I’d thought, but in fact only cycled 13 miles, because half of it was downhill!
I’ll let you decide on that one.