LEJOG Virtual Challenge-Mile Marker 520.6: Sheffield and almost the halfway point

It’s a big week in ‘merica and stress levels are off the chart. Good time to visit my virtual trek. This mileage was completed via a couple five mile hikes in Upper Michigan and multiple, now short biking commutes to work. Been a busy couple months of fitting in a getaway, moving, and maintaining sanity during this crazy ass election season.

Below are some pics from our trip to the UP.

Sheffield via Sherwood Forest

In our virtual adventure we are now in Sheffield with a jaunt through the literary famous, Sherwood Forest. Once a royal hunting ground, now a lovely nature reserve. As for Robin Hood, folklore states he ” is variously a yeoman, a noble, and a true outlaw; early ballad ‘Robin Hood and the Monk’ (1450) makes him out to be a cheat and a casual murderer – a far more bloodthirsty figure, and no ally of any King.” Makes one wonder what Friar Tuck was really like.

Sheffield sits just outside the Peak District National Park. It is the Pittsburgh of the UK, known for it’s steel industry but also re-inventing itself as a cultural center. Sheffield also has quite the musical reputation and is home to those 80s and alternative Gen X favorites, The Human League, Heaven 17 and Caberet Voltaire. More into 80s hair bands? Def Leopard. For you, millennials, the Arctic Monkey’s. Boomers, I only recognized Joe Cocker. Gen Z..I have no clue.

First stop is, of course, the pub. The Old Queen’s Head is the oldest building in Sheffield and the perfect spot for a pint.

If interested in the area’s industrial past, a visit to the Abbeydale Industrial Hamlet sounds neat. The description makes me think of Greenfield Village outside of Detroit. Want to experience a more genteel way of life ala Jane Austen then Chatworth House is a must (as well as the setting for one of the Pride and Prejudice films). Chatsworth is also located near the small market town of Bakewell, known for it’s Bakewell Tart. The latter caused quite the uproar and outrage when it was deemed that it was improperly made on a 2016 episode of the Great British Bake Off. “You don’t put a layer of fondant on a Bakewell Tart, you tarts #GBBO.”

As you know, I like unique lodgings so I think I’d probably try a night or two on the Victoria Quay in a houseboat while I rest up for some serious rambling in the Peak District.

Chatworth House
A proper Bakewell tart. Topped with almonds NOT icing.

Once I add up a few more miles on my bike commuting (it’s only 3 miles round trip so it takes a few days to get up to mileage worth posting) I’ll be excited to virtually explore the Peak District where I hope to visit in someday in a post-covid world. However, after that my virtual travels catches up with some real world travels as we head into Yorkshire!

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