Yorkshire Photo Explorer

Gibson Mill, Hardcastle Crags

Gibson Mill, Hardcastle Crags

Gibson Mill is set in the heart of Hardcastle Crags near Hebden Bridge, West Yorkshire. Built in the early 1800s, it was a working cotton mill until 1890¹. Today the mill is a National Trust site and houses a café and exhibition.

Gibson Mill, Hardcastle Crags

Sign to Gibson Mill from the car park

I visited on a Saturday afternoon. The site was very busy and I couldn’t get into the main car park, so instead I drove to the Clough Hole car park and walked down the hill to the mill. The paths are well sign posted and it didn’t take long to get to the mill. The mill’s setting is stunning, with the millpond providing ample opportunities for reflection photos. I walked around the mill pond and along the surrounding wall to get a few different angles on the building. To get the water as smooth as possible, I used a filter to slow the shutter speed. This was not easy as there was a fair amount of wind creating ripples on the pond.

The pictures of the northern hairy wood ants on the leaflet for the site intrigued me, so I wanted to try to get some photos of them. This proved to be a challenge! It was not difficult finding the ants, they are all over the site. It is estimated there are over 200 million ants here². The challenge is that they move very fast and are usually in the darker areas of the forest. I got a few semi-decent shots considering they are on the highest ISO and taken hand held:

Northern Hairy Wood Ant, Hardcastle Crags

Northern Hairy Wood Ant at Hardcastle Crags

Gibson Mill at Hardcastle Crags is a very scenic place for photography. There is also much more to explore in the area, and I hope to come back again to photograph the waterfalls and views from the trails.

Here are some of the photos from my visit (click on an image to enlarge):

Practicalities
Approximate post code (for sat nav) HX7 7AA
Parking There are two main car parks. The Midgehole car park (HX7 7AA) is the main parking area. Clough Hole car park (HX7 7AZ) is the smaller alternative when Midgehole is full.
Website https://www.nationaltrust.org.uk/hardcastle-crags

This is the location of Gibson Mill at Hardcastle Crags:

Notes for next time
  • Explore the area further
  • Try to come at sunset/sunrise
References

¹ Gibson Mill, Hardcastle Crags, History [accessed 20 October 2016] http://www.hebdenbridge.co.uk/features/gibsonmill.html

² BBC Nature’s Calendar, Woodands, Hardcastle Crags, Ant Army [accessed 20 October 2016] http://www.bbc.co.uk/naturescalendar/winter/woodlands/hardcastle/hardcastle.shtml

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