Through the destructive processes outlined in the previous three sections, the moorlands become prone to erosion from the weather.
With little or no vegetation to ‘knit’ the soil together the water table lowers and the peat dries out. In addition, the higher moors of the Peak District and south pennines are regularly subjected to frost heave, with repeated daily cycles of freezing and thawing, which causes needle-ice. This lifts the surface layers of peat from the main peat body.
In turn, this results in the soil being blown away by the wind and washed away by the rain during the following summer and is why 2.5cm depth of peat a year is lost over all of the areas of bare peat.