Harsh winds bring drifting snows to the exposed hills of Derbyshire and crystal ice envelops gritstone boulders on unprotected Kinder where waterfalls freeze and lone sheep forage for frosted shards of grass.

January morning on Grindslow Knoll, Kinder

Early lambs, vulnerable and weak, rely on the care of the farmer for survival. Mountain hares, often seen around Derwent Edge, change into white winter furs for better camouflage against predators.

Frozen fence near Mam Tor | Early lambs | Wye Dale
Curbar Edge grasses
Snow-covered boulders on Curbar Edge

Mid-winter is often the harshest time of year for upland farmers with the months of January and February, deeply into the winter season, often being the hardest. In the Peak District the earliest snows can fall in mid November and the latest are normally finished by mid-April, Freak snow storms, however, have been known in Buxton as late as June, but this is thankfully exceptional. Mild, early winters followed by a cold snap are the worst times for sheep farmers with very young lambs exposed and ill-prepared for such conditions.

Sunrise at Longstone Moor Farm - about as tough a Peak District location as it gets in winter
Another winter morning on Longstone Moor

The Peak District's popular Monsal Trail, normally busy with cyclists, walkers and horse-riders, can be deserted in winter but, a snowy walk can be very beautiful and always fun!

Footpath sign near Wye dale

Snow blizzard threatens to bury sheep exposed near Buxton

Bleak Mid Winter - Peak District National Park - January 2017

All photographs brought to you by Michael Cummins - Peak District based landscape photographer

Find out more about the Peak District with Let's Stay - where to stay, what to do and much more.

Created By
Michael Cummins


Peak District based landscape photographer.

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