We parked next to the public footpath access point and I read the interesting information board.
The rest stayed in the car as I took the very short walk to the stone.
This is a good stone to visit and was larger than I expected – about 4m high.
I was surprised to see handles inserted into the stone to allow climbers access to the top. Judging by the toe holes worn into the stone many people must have made the climb.
I thought in that case why don’t I see what the view is like from the top? Not a good idea as it turned out!
I made it about half way up when my toe slipped when I was reaching up to the next handle. I started to fall backwards but managed to hold on with one arm as I desperately looked for another hold. At this point I realised that if I had fallen I would have landed on my back on slab of stone – ouch!
I decided discretion was the better part of valour and climbed back down and headed back to the car realising I was not as young, fit or agile as I would like to think I am!!
The Cork Stone, unmistakeable and impressive, soon comes into view with its inevitable attendant sheep. Behind it an enormous bush of purple flowers is in full bloom (must learn some plant names). I am reminded of the shots Faerygirl recently posted of the stone in a bleached-out snowy landscape, very different from today. But the jelly-baby shape is the same. Circling round to the NW of the stone I am struck by its P-shaped resemblance to one of the slabs at Stanton Drew Cove.
A strange looking boulder resembling a giant golf flag that greets you as the land drops away on the southwest of the moor down towards the road from Birchover to Stanton-in-Peak. One side is hideously disfigured by modern graffiti, foot holes and iron handles and the weathering around the narrow base makes it look like it could topple over at any time. Although there seems to be little evidence of ancient activity around the stone, the early inhabitants of the moor would certainly been aware of the boulder and Fitz’s description of it as a mini Sphinx is quite apt, imagine the stone as a mute guardian of the moor, forever gazing blindly out towards Doll Tor whilst protecting the circles and cairns behind.