The UK’s first national park, the Peak District offers some of the most diverse landscapes in the country. In the south is the White Peak, named for its white limestone valleys and gorges, and in the north is the Dark Peak, known for its moorland and gritstone edges. Its highest point is Kinder Scout – on a clear day, you can stand on its summit and see all the way to Snowdonia.
But if the Dark Peak has Kinder Scout, the White Peak has its own natural wonder: Chee Dale. This steep-sided gorge on the River Wye is a wonder to behold, a marvel of geological history. At times as deep as 200 feet, it is like a wound cutting through the hills. And for walkers willing to follow the winding path of the river, Chee Dale offers postcard-perfect scenery, with fairy-tale stepping stones lining the foot of the cliffs.
This design shows a picturesque image of Chee Dale: the moss-lined stepping stones, the deep blue of the river, and the foliage hanging loosely over the gorge. In the foreground, you can just about see a white-throated dipper perched on a rock. Dippers are often seen darting along the river’s surface here, or ‘bobbing’ on the rocks searching for food.