- Start: Castleton SK149830
- End: Castleton SK149830
- Country: England
- County: Derbyshire
- Type: Country
- Nearest pub: Cheshire Cheese in Hope and the inns and tea rooms in Castleton
- Difficulty: Medium
DescriptionA walk of great contrasts which exemplifies ‘Derbyshire Walks’
Linear distance: 8 miles
Approximate time: 5 hours
Approx. height climbed: Approximately 1,000ft
Parking: Castleton SK149830
Paths: Ridgeway, field and valley paths
Refreshments: Cheshire Cheese in Hope and the inns and tea rooms in Castleton
Picnic: Instructions 7 to 10
Toilets: Visitor Centre in Castleton
Directions: When you enter Castleton from Hope follow the A6187 round two sharp bends to drive down the main street to the Visitor Centre and the car park.
Description: A walk of great contrasts which exemplifies ‘Derbyshire Walks’. After an interesting stroll by the Peakeshole Water and along the interesting byways of Castleton the path takes you on an easy route below the high open moorland to the south of the town. Although the gradual climb up Winnats Pass is on a path by the road the impressive towering crags give a feeling of isolation and grandeur. Once you have climbed the steps up to Mam Tor the route takes you across the high ridge between Edale and Castleton where the views are breathtaking across to Kinder and well worth the climb. Below Lose Hill you will descend on grass paths to Hope still with views across to Win Hill. From Hope, where you can stop for refreshments at The Cheshire Cheese by adding about a quarter of a mile to the walk, the paths cross undulating farm land again with views of Mam Tor and the Winnats.
1. From the car park in Castleton return to the main road and go across. Follow the Riverside Walk, a surfaced path, to the minor road and turn right. Cross the river bridge and walk up Goose Hill, first on a tarmac surface then a wooded stony track. (A)
2. Go through a gate to follow a path round the hillside, keeping a wall close on the right. You will cross one stile and one gate. In about half a mile you reach the road.
3. Turn left passing the entrance to Speedwell Cavern. Walk up Winnats Pass by following the grass path on the right of the road. After about three-quarters of a mile, as you near the top of the Pass, bear off right to and through a small gate. (B)
4. Bear right up the small gully. As you near the top bear round to the left aiming for the wood below Mam Nick. You will see Winnats Head Farm over to the left and a small gate by a farm gate ahead. Go through the gate and keep straight on. Go through two more small gates to cross the road. (C)
5. Follow the path across the National Trust Windy Knoll area. As you near the road you will join a track. Turn right to the road. Cross the road via two gates.
6. Keep straight on up the hill to go through a gate and up steps to near the road. Turn right through a gate. (D)
7. Follow the stepped path to the top of Mam Tor then continue ahead down the ridge to Hollins Cross, (E) just over three-quarters of a mile. Keep straight on at first up the ridge for another half a mile. At the start of Back Tor, by a stile on the left, turn right down a short bank to join another path. Turn left. (F)
8. Walk towards a conifer wood. Go through the right-hand gate into the wood. Walk through the small wood to leave it via a stile.
9. Keep straight on across the hillside below Lose Hill crossing three stiles. When you see the path coming down from Lose Hill on your left cross the fourth stile.
10. (G) Gradually veer away from the fence on the right as you descend the hill side on a wide grass path.
11. Soon you will see a fence and a wall ahead. Follow this fence and broken wall on downhill.
12. Go through a small gate to continue downhill on a sunken shady path, at the end of which cross a stile.
13. Turn left down a track passing Losehill End Farm on the right then on down the surfaced lane. At the T-junction turn right to continue down hill. At the junction with the Edale Road in Hope turn right. Walk down the Edale Road for about 350 metres.
14. (H) Turn right up steps by the post box in the wall, cross the stile. (If you wish for refreshments keep straight on to The Cheshire Cheese.)
15. Walk up the fenced and walled and hedged path. At a junction of paths by a bungalow turn right through a gate.
16. Follow the fenced and hedged path to cross a stile then continue in the same direction along a sunken path. Go through two small gates following the hedge on the left then through another gate. Keep straight on and at a hedge corner bear off left leaving the footpath to Lose Hill and Mam Tor to follow the Castleton route. (J)
17. Down at a farm gate (do not go through it) turn left to follow the fence and trees up on your right. Pass through a small gate and across a planked path. Follow a fence on the left crossing stiles and going through gates and over a planked footbridge, eventually cross another footbridge in a small valley. The field boundary is now on the right. Cross two more fields, then in the third field pass through the gate on the right.
18. Follow the fenced path going through two more gates. Turn left round Spring House Farm to go through another gate. At a junction of drives turn right to follow the Castleton route (K).
19. At the next junction of tracks bear left through a gate (or gateway). Walk behind Losehill Hall. Where the track turns sharp left keep straight on through a gated stile.
20. Follow the field boundary on the right, go through a gate and cross the stepping stones. Keep straight on; soon you will have a fence on the left. Turn left over a cattle grid to follow a track. In about quarter of a mile, at the Hollowford Centre, turn left down the Hollowford Road. (L)
21. Follow this road for about 350 metres and about 100 metres after Candle House Farm (once a candle factory) turn right then immediately right again. (M)
22. Follow a stony track which soon becomes a shady sunken path.
23. Go through a farm gate and almost immediately turn left to follow a path with a wall on the right; soon this path bends sharply right.
24. Go through a gate by a farm gate and keep straight on. Continue in the same direction across two fields and gates to join a farm track at Dunscar Farm.
25. Turn left down the farm drive. At the cattle grid turn left over two stiles. (N)
26. Keep the wall and stream on the left as you cross two fields and stiles. In the third field bear right to go through a gate in the field corner.
27. Walk along the narrow path to the road in Castleton and turn left back to the Visitor Centre.