This is a walk I’ve done quite a few times as it starts and ends in my adopted home town of Buxton. I like the walk as you get a mix of terrain, a few steady climbs to challenge the heart rate and of course some stunning vistas. It’s also long enough to give the excuse to take a flask of coffee and a few sandwiches, which always appeals to me. The walk is ever changing depending on the weather and seasons. I’ve done it on a foggy frosty day, a wet day but unusually for October this time it was blue sky most of the way. You can see the Autumn colours in my pictures but towards the end of the summer you would have seen purple heather everywhere.
For me this Derbyshire walk of course starts from my front door, but for you I’ll start it on Bishop’s Lane on the west side of Buxton.
Follow up the increasingly steep lane road passing the houses and up into the countryside. You will pass what looks like an equestrian centre on the right after which you will soon come across a footpath on the left. Take the footpath up a steep hill via a few steeps. Up and up you’ll reach a gate at the brow – don’t forget to turn around and take in the view.
After catching your breath carry on up to the summit, which has appeared as they always do just when you think you’ve got to the top. You’ll be walking in a slightly right veering direction picking your way through some boggy ground, the theme of the walk. The next part is my favourite part of the walk as it is a leisurely stroll down into the valley, keeping the dry stone wall on your right. Again there is an abundance of muddy stretches, but that’s the fun of the walk.
A small climb up will take you to a cross-road with an old disused railway path, but go straight across and continue down the other side. Keep waking down the valley for a little while following the track as it gently bears to the right. Eventually the path widens and gently rises up hill and you are rewarded with an impressive view of the Errwood Reservoir. Take the time to soak it in.
And then you’ll get a view of both Errwood and Fernilee Reservoirs. You’ll later be walking along the road that divides them.
The path drops downs before it cross the open ground, still in the direction of the reservoirs, and very gently rises until it pops out on the road, where you then follow it downhill between the two reservoirs. Continue along the road keeping the Errwood Reservoir on the left-hand side. There are a number of bench opportunities on this stretch of the walk and it’s a good place to have a sandwich while looking out across the water.
Continue along the quiet perimeter road for sometime as it rises uphill, leaving behind the reservoir and tracking the pretty stream in the valley below.
Take the path down to the second wooden footbridge you see.
Once you cross the stream turn right and carry along the path in the direction of Berry Clough.
The stoney bracken-engulfed path takes you up hill again through the moorland, sometimes it feels like your walking up a river bed. And don’t forget to look backwards sometime to take in the view.
Up and up you’ll eventually reach the summit and a signpost. Carry on straight ahead in the direction of Burbage.
You will next reach a field boundary where you need to take the path bearing right diagonally across the field, which you guessed it can be a little boggy.
When you get to the other side of the field turn left down the track, which takes you back into Buxton.
Follow the road through the houses and to the main road, which you will lead you back into Buxton town centre with its multitude of cafes and bars to revitalise your soul.
Hopefully my route description gives you an idea of the walk but as always plot it out on a map before hand, and make sure you have some study walking boot and warm clothes as it can get jolly cold up on the moors. You really should try the walk, you won’t be disappointed.
The walk is about 9 miles and took me about 4.5 hours including stops along the way.