It felt a long time since I had taken any pictures, so whilst my better (according to her) half went up to shop at Meadowhall I went back to Padley Gorge. This time I decided to park at the top, make my way to the cafe at the bottom, and then walk back. Mistake.
The problem is that it is nearly winter, it is wet, and the path is both slippery and muddy. It is also quite frequently a lot higher than the river. So to get the shot means scrambling down the banks of the gorge and then climbing back up. Padley Gorge was overwhelming, such that it was difficult for me to isolate something to photograph. After one particular image a young guy bounded down the gorge and shouted “Is this place to take a photo from, then?”. I looked at him. First – how did he manage to bound down the gorge so effortlessly when I had slipped on my backside several times to get to my position? Second – the “best” place? I told him why I was taking the photo there, and reaffirmed there were at least a hundred “best places” in the area. so he got out his phone to take the photo and bounded back up the gorge.
the end result was that by the time I reached the cafe I was knackered, and I had to go back uphill! A planned diversion introduced a vertical climb I was willing to accept. Getting lost introduced a further climb I was not expecting. End result was the final half hour was survival rather than photography. I was never more grateful to reach the car.
Was it worth it? Not sure. but I do know I have revised my plans on how to tackle Padley Gorge next time!