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Hike to give a half day to and weather backup choices

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Hike to give a half day to and weather backup choices

We're visiting the PD in a couple of weeks time and staying for a couple of nights around Tideswell.

As DW has hurt her back and cannot walk for more than 30-60 mins easy going, it will just be me and my two boys (11, 12) hiking while she finds somewhere warm and scenic to read/explore/relax (suggestions welcome, but more on that later).

While the Monsal Trail is close and probably very scenic, unless it is pelting hail/snow, I had something a little more strenuous and "up and back" in mind! I don't mind up to 6 hours at the maximum for a round trip (boys have done over 9 hours in high mountains previously), though 2-4 might be more of a sweet spot. This is a list I've come up with:

Mam Tor circular walk - (just west of Castleton) 2 hrs/3mi/easy

https:/…mam-tor-circular-walk

Ridge Walk Mam Tor to Losehill (by Castleton) - 2 hrs/3mi/easy

https:/…mam-tor-circular-walk

Stanage Edge - (east of Castleton) 3 hrs/6.5mi/moderate

https:/…peakdistrict10.htm

Kinder Scout - (NW of Castleton) 5 hrs/8.8mi/hard

https:/…peakdistrict07.htm

Would love to hear of other people's experiences of them and which they might choose, only taking one as a "wild" hike in the peaks!? We're going to do Derwent Damn/Ladybower the next morning as a gentle stroll with the whole family, so don't worry about missing there!

Would also like to hear how weather affected each one is. Will have sturdy hiking boots and wet weather gear, but unsure if some of them are particularly dangerous in high winds with sheer falls or have very slippy rock climbs, etc.

As an added bonus, any nearby (more gentle) activities to while away several hours for DW would also be much appreciated!! Castleton sounds the obvious choice between shops, cafes and scenic village life, but perhaps somewhere to sit in the car or a nearby perch with great views while reading a novel?

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5 replies to this topic
Derby, United...
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1. Re: Hike to give a half day to and weather backup choices

I have PM'd you.

The Kinder Scout walk is great - but the 'route' between the top of Grindsbrook Clough and Kinder downfall is very hard to find and very (very!) boggy for most of the year. Any hikes across the Kinder plateau (like this one) require clear weather and really good navigation skills.

Edale is a good starting point for a hike up to Ringing Roger (on the Kinder Plateau). The route is now mainly stone slabs with great views from Ringing Roger when the weather is clear.

There is a great route Westwards along the edge path of the plateau. It is slabbed in parts and reasonably obvious. More great views towards Mam Tor etc.

Getting off the plateau back to Edale

There is a good scarmbly route down the wet and rocky Grindsbrook Clough to Edale.

or slightly further there is the route up to the top of Grindslow Knoll then the easier (than the Grindsbrook route) down to Edale.

or you can go further around the path (follow the slab path to cut across the top of 'Fox Holes') and follow the edge path to Crowden Tower and then down the steep path (at the start) of Crowden Clough. At the bottowm you can cut left / East around to join the Pennine Way or keep following the stream to the farm and the Pennine Way

or you can follow the edge path to the Woolpacks (very boggy in places) and to the top of the Jacob's Ladder path (Pennine Way) and follow it back to Edale.

Plan B is to go up onto the plateau from Edale via the Pennine Way following the Jacob's Ladder path and then visit the Kinder Low trig point and then follow the edhe path with views towards the West to the Kinder Downfall. However, I'd recommend that you return back along the Pennine Way to the top of Jacob's Ladder rather than attempting to cross the centre of the Kinder plateau.

From the top of Jacb's Ladder you have the option of continuing along the same path back to Edale - or to head Eastwards and go back down to Edale via one of Crowden Clough (1st option), Grindslow Knoll (2nd option), Grindsbrook Clough (3rd option) or Ringing Roger (4th and furthest option).

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Kinder Scout
Kinder Scout
206 Reviews
Peak District National Park, UK
Edale
Edale
Hope Valley, UK
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2. Re: Hike to give a half day to and weather backup choices

Thanks JT, some great information. I'm guessing after all the snow and non-stop rain we've had that the advice about bogginess is probably rather accurate right now!

Flicking through some Google results on hikes in the PD, I just quite liked the look of Jacob's Ladder and the half decent elevation challenge of Kinder Scout. I see from the contours it is quite a significant plateau rather than a sharp peak (we spent last summer hitting some sharp peaks in the Rockies ~ 2000-2500m each :o) ). I'm not fixated on it though .. just really looking for a satisfying hike with a decent "climb to the top", great view and spectacular terrain around the path too (so not a fireroad all the way up!). Is KS right for me?

One other option I've not put too much research into was around Ladybower .. combining the historical and spectacular at the water level with a challenging climb onto a ridge/peak could be good (do such options exist?) ...

And to answer your concern on navigation - I'm competent, but not looking to spend 5 mins with a compass and OS map every 15 mins of climbing (lest I get murdered by my boys for taking too long!!). Frankly I'd rather the challenge be the route up and reward at the top than a navigation one :)

Edited: 02 April 2018, 07:27
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Kinder Scout
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206 Reviews
Peak District National Park, UK
Ladybower Inn
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578 Reviews
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Suffolk, United...
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3. Re: Hike to give a half day to and weather backup choices

Hi,

Here is a circular route we used to use some years ago for youngsters doing a Duke of Edinburgh Award expedition. It use to take about 8 hours but they were carrying all their own gear including tents, sleeping bags, cookers etc.

Starting from Hope, up Lose Hill, along the ridge to Mam Tor, South past Windy Knoll, Rowter farm asfar as the Limestone Way. Down Cave Dale to Castleton, a short bit (about 800 metres) of main road towards Hope then a footpath through fields all the way back to Hope.

Incidentally, as you enter Castleton from Cave Dale there is a lovely Ice Cream shop on your left!

Bob

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Hope
Hope
Hope Valley, UK
Castleton
Castleton
Hope Valley, UK
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4. Re: Hike to give a half day to and weather backup choices

From your post, I'd recommend:

Edale - Pennine Way along Jacob's ladder to the Kinder plateau - then carry on along the Pennine Way to (very slight detour) Kinder Low Trig Pennine Way to Kinder downfall .

Then back along the Pennine Way to the cairn at the edge of the Kinder Plateau...

When you return you can judge the exit dependent on time left, mood etc

You can head back down to Edale via the Pennine Way (your way up) or take the well marked, flatish edge path past the Woolpacks and then descend either down Crowden Clough, over Grindslow Knoll, down Grindsbrook (good fun) or down past Ringing Roger - these are as per my post, albeit in the reverse order.

If the weather is fine you'll get stellar views throughout the hike from midway up Jacob's Ladder and onwards. You'll see the top of the Kinder plateau in front and the great ridge / Mam Tor Southwards on the way up, you'll see tthe expanse of the Kinder plateau and some of the Northern landscape from Kinder Low trig, you'll see the West and Kinder reservoir etc along the path to the Kinder downfall (and the downfall).

If you opt to take the edge towards the Woolpacks and to Grinsdbrook you'll see the Southern edge of the Kinder plateau and the Edale valley to the south.

You will probably hear and see Red Grouse, and possibly Golden Plover (maybe a bit too early) and Curlew. If you are v lucky you may see also mountain hare.

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Edale
Edale
Hope Valley, UK
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5. Re: Hike to give a half day to and weather backup choices

Ended up with pea-soup fog for the day we arrived and the full day we had there! For safety reasons, the only reasonable option seemed to be Mam Tor, so we took as hard a route up as we could find since it seemed like a small summit!

Started at Treak Cliff Cavern carpark and went up the steep path over to Blue John Cavern, then over to where the landslides break up the old road. Visibility was about 5-10m at best, so didn't quite identify the correct path up to the summit (which I believe should have been a very steep grass path directly uphill with "footholds" in it), so we landed up skirting the landslide sections and actually climbing the base of the cliffs themselves just heading up where we could see and avoiding silly dangerous looking bits. Eventually cut diagonally back onto the actual path about halfway up and then just a long slog (more or less straight up!) to the summit.

Met some people at last at the top, which was wet, windy and utterly without view in the fog! Came down the easy/tourist route on the stone steps to the road, on through the muddy fields to the next road, down through more fields past a farm and then down Winnats Pass, past Speedwell Cavern and down on to Castleton itself where my nice warm wife was waiting with the car (and for an excuse for cream tea in town!).

A good 2-2.5 hours in all and enjoyable given the conditions. Probably 30-60 mins quicker if we could see where we were going, didn't almost sink in mud in the fields and weren't taking extra special care not to lose/damage the children!! :o)

Very glad we did it in the direction we did, as the opposite would have been a rather boring climb and a foolishly dangerous descent (not that anyone would leave the path down to Blue John Cavern once they found it!).

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