Fairbrook Naze, Derbyshire

 near Snake Pass

 With its great views and stunning features, this surprisingly quiet Dark Peak location provides James Grant with a wealth of photographic potential to explore

Fairbrook Naze in the Peak District should be an iconic location but it actually falls into the less-visited category, meaning you can capture something a little different and find a bit of solitude at the same time. Located on the northern side of Kinder Scout, near the Snake Pass, the views from here are fantastic. The main waterfall (pictured here) is an excellent feature, and there is a very conveniently situated tree, which leads the eye to Kinder Scout beyond.

Late August is really the best time to photograph the location, when there is a mass of vivid purple lighting up the hillside. Last year, I visited three times towards the end of August, in varying weather. This shot was taken on one of the duller days, but the advantage was that the clouds acted as a diffuser, bringing out plenty more textures and detail throughout the scene.

Having already visited the location, I knew the composition I wanted to achieve. To capture this image, I set the camera up using a 0.9 ND grad filter along with a 0.9 grad to enable me to slow the movement of the water and to hold back the sky. I chose a relatively long exposure while using an aperture of f/11 to ensure good depth of field.

A major issue I had when taking the shot was finding a balancing spot for the tripod. Because I was using a camera without live view mode, I had to lean rather precariously into the viewfinder.

If youplanning on visiting this location, you really need to follow a map. If youventuring out alone to the tails, let someone know where you are going and leave a route card on your car windscreen. It is off the beaten track, and you need to climb down the very slippery bank-side to get to the falls.

Planning your trip

How to get there Take the A57 from either Sheffield or Glossop and park in one of the lay-bys near the Snake Pass Inn; the walk begins at a stile, which takes you through some woods a little further down from the pub. Use a map to plan the route, as navigation may be tricky. The closest railway station is Bamford, which is around seven miles away.

What to shoot At this time of year there is an abundance of heather lining the hillsides, which can be the main focus of the image. There are plenty of little waterfalls all the way up the brook, with the main one being around one mile in. A steady walk up the brook to the top of the northern side of Kinder Scout is possible, for views that stretch for miles.

Best time of day Early morning is best, while in the late afternoon the sun just sits outside the image to the right, making accurate exposure tricky but still possible.

What to take A map, waterproofs, good walking boots, and a change of clothes; the bank to the waterfall is steep and slippery.

Nearest pub/accommodation Snake Pass Inn, Snake Road, Hope Valley, S33 OBJ, 01433 651480, www.snakepassinn.co.uk.

Other times of year Therea lot on offer within a few miles of Fairbrook Naze. In winter, nearby Alport Castle is good at sunset when the sun lights up the cliffs. In spring, a trip through the surrounding woodland is worthwhile, as plants start to come to life; and, in autumn, a trip up Kinder Scout should prove fruitful.

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