Sunday 30 October 2011

Thorpe Cloud from all angles

This hill, which towers over the southern end of Dovedale, is called Thorpe Cloud. It lies between the villages of Ilam and Thorpe. Here, it is seen from the rim of Dovedale, beyond Bunster Hill.

Thorpe Cloud is a limestone hill which stands at 942'high and would (approx 350 million years ago) have been part of a shallow sea. The limestone was cut into reefs during the two ice ages and left proud as the seas retreated . It's name comes from the Old Norse Thorpe, meaning village or farmstead and the Old English Clud, meaning a hill.

Thorpe Cloud is very popular with walkers because it offers views right up the Dovedale Gorge or south over the Midland plain. It is also popular with paragliders.

In total, we counted seven, but I didn't manage to get a decent photo of more than five at any one time.

I'm really unsure about whether I would fancy a go at this or not. Part of me thinks it would be brilliant, but another part thinks that this is genuinely dangerous and maybe not such a good idea.

What do you think?
Have you ever had a go?
Am I wrong about the 'dangerous' bit?


  1. At this stage in my life I'm a chicken...
    I think it's very safe to say I'll never try it. Probably like anything in the extreme sporting world this can be dangerous.
    Looks like they've picked a real good spot to do it, though...

  2. Seems nowadays paragliding is safe, particularly if you do tandem gliding with an instructor. About one fatality per 15 years single.....lots of stats on the web.

  3. It must be wonderful to be up there looking down at that view! Having said that I'd rather keep my feet firmly on the ground whilst watching those that dare go up in the air:)

  4. I had completely forgotten Thorpe Cloud - brought back such a lot of happy memories for me of when we lived in Lichfield and went to Dovedale regularly.

    As for taking off in one of those things - no thank you.

  5. I much prefer parasailing over open water. The landing is less frightening. I do love to watch though.

  6. I'd love to try paragliding just to take some aerial photos! Thorpe Cloud is a great place for a picnic :-)