The Bogtrotter

Castleton circular walk over Mam Tor

by on Sep.27, 2014, under British Walks, Walks

Probably one of the most iconic walks in England, this seven and a half mile circular walk provides excellent views across the White and Dark Peak divide.

Cave Dale with Peveril Castle

Cave Dale with Peveril Castle

Starting from Castleton itself, go past the church and take the narrow path into Cave Dale. This spectacular deep dale (which is also the start of the Limestone Way) climbs sharply up, the path a rugged mix of stone and mud. The steep sides of the dale give it an overbearing atmosphere, which is enhanced by the sight of Peveril Castle sitting at the top of the cliffs to the right. After nearly a mile the path flattens out and you enter a more typical White Peak scene of sheep in fields surrounded by continuous stone walls.

Having passed over a stone stile, follow the tarmac track past a farmhouse as you head directly towards the imposing figure of Mam Tor. You cross a couple of roads before starting your ascent of the steep pathway to the top of the “Mother hill”. The stone steps lead through the old Iron Age ditches all the way up to the Trig point that marks the summit.

View along the Ridge

View along the Ridge

From here you follow the ridge, the stone paving that lines the route a necessary reinforcement of one of the most walked paths in the country. The path traverses Hollins Cross and Back Tor until eventually reaching the conical top of Lose Hill.  At the summit the path turns 90 degrees to the right and starts to descend back towards Castleton.

Drop down the slope towards Losehill Farm, using styles to cross a couple of stone walls.  After the farm the path follows a metalled track to Spring House Farm.  From here take the track that contours along the valley side to Losehill Hall.  Don’t follow the track when it turns left but continue straight ahead along a soggy footpath.  This emerges into another track that reaches a outdoor pursuits centre before curving left and returning to Castleton along Hollowford Road.

This is a perfect Peak District day walk, suitable for almost any season or weather.  Having done this route in thick fog, snow showers and glorious sunshine, I can honestly say that I enjoyed it every time.

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