Thorpe Cloud from Dovedale, with stepping stones
|Elevation||287 m (942 ft)|
|Prominence||79 m (259 ft)|
|Topo map||OS Landranger 119|
Thorpe Cloud is an isolated limestone hill (a reef knoll) lying between the villages of Thorpe and Ilam at the southern end of Dovedale. It is a popular hill amongst the many day-trippers who visit the area, and provides a fine viewpoint north up the dale and south across the Midland plain.
Like much of the dale, including Bunster Hill on the opposite bank, it is in the ownership of the National Trust, and is part of their South Peak Estate. These Dovedale properties were acquired by the Trust in 1934.
In 1997, the writer Jeff Kent discovered that a double sunset could be seen against Thorpe Cloud from the top of nearby Lin Dale and, two years later, the phenomenon was first captured on film by the photographer Chris Doherty. The occurrence is visible in good weather on and around the summer solstice and perhaps beyond, when the sun sets on the summit of the hill, partially reappears from its steep northern slope and sets for a second and final time shortly afterwards. The precise event and its location are described in Kent's book The Mysterious Double Sunset.
Thorpe Cloud and Dovedale were used as locations in the 2010 film of Robin Hood, starring Russell Crowe. Thorpe Cloud can be clearly made out in several scenes towards the end of the film.
View from on the top of Thorpe Cloud looking towards Bunster Hill
From Thorpe Cloud looking to the left of Bunster Hill with the Car Park in the middle
- The Mysterious Double Sunset, especially pages 101 and 113 and photographs 22 (i) and (ii), Jeff Kent, ISBN 0-9529152-5-1, Witan Books, 2001.