We had long been interested in hiking Mam Tor as it was such a popular destination with hikers and walkers around the Peak District, however we had wanted this to be quite a big hike and not a short visit from a close by car park. Eventually we found a 9-mile route that was not only circular but also took in the great ridge and the nearby towns of Castleton and Hope, additionally is circled round into Cave Dale which is yet another sight to behold in the area.
We set out early and parked in Hope looking to beat the crowds as it was a particularly sunny weekend, and luckily, we did as we managed to grab the last parking space available. Once we had grabbed our rucksacks it was off out of Hope via Eadale road and then headed off into the countryside. We followed a popular route with ramblers that steadily worked its way up through some woodland and a few open fields gradually maintaining height as we went. A couple of steep sections slow you slightly, but it doesn’t take long to smooth back out again.
Once we hit the top of the Great ridge it was a straight forward following the ridge along all the way to Mam Tor itself, fantastic views were on offer the whole way around and they are especially beautiful from Mam Tor itself, the views back towards hope looking past Castleton is beautiful. We sat here to eat lunch and the moved on down the opposite side, which lead across some open fields and farmers’ fields that have access land. After following these fields along for some time, we made two quick left turns and headed down towards Cave Dale.
This part of the hike awarded us with some fantastic views in a deep valley, the complete opposite of Mam Tor and it was much quieter here, the walk down here was a bit rough at points but was easy enough to get through and after finding a patch of grass we sat and took in the sights with some liquid as well. Further down this path lead into Castleton where we had a quick look around some of the shops and places to view, before heading back onto the trail and out of Castleton. The last leg of the trip follows a quiet road and then a path all the way back to hope, at points this is again through access land and fields but it is all quite easily marked out.
Once back to hope, we popped into a pub to congratulate ourselves and then headed off home. It was a great way to take in Mam Tor and the surrounding area while stretching out legs and seeing all the area had to offer, it will definitely be a route we will do again.