Ramble: ‘Youl’ love this walk

Youlgreave taken by John Watson of Dearne Valley Ramblers
Youlgreave taken by John Watson of Dearne Valley Ramblers

Youlgreave Circular Walk

• A Peak District Spectacular

• 7 miles. Graded: mainly moderate but strenuous in places

• Grid Ref: SK212643.

• Post Code: DE45 1UW.

• This walk will entail crossing farmland/fields which may contain cattle, so it is therefore imperative for dogs to be kept on leads, and under th proper control of their owners at all times, please.

•* Indicates sites of interest along the route which walkers may wish to take a further interest in.

• This walk was written, produced and walked by Dearne Valley Ramblers, pictures were taken by John Watson for more interesting walks please visit http://www.ramblers.org.uk/dearne-valley or why not join them this Sunday at 9.30am. Worsbrough Country Park to Wentworth. Meet Clayfield Lane, Wentworth, SW62 7TF. 6.5 miles/easy. This is a linear walk.

Meet: Near to the George Hotel in Youlgreave, on - street parking is available on Church Street or Conksbury Lane, near to the Inn.

Cross the road, towards the 12th Century Parish Church of All Saints *, and then follow the road at the right hand side of the church, down the lane. Where it forks, take the right hand road and carry on to the bottom where you will encounter the River Bradford. Cross the river using the stone slab bridge, and walk up the grassy bank.

You will then see a stone gap leading onto Mawstone Lane, which rises from the left. Walk up the lane for a short distance and look for the footpath sign on the other side of the lane marked Limestone Way. Enter the path via the gate which takes you diagonally up a gravel track, across fields that may contain cattle.

For ease of understanding, the paths referred to run diagonally to the right, and ascend gradually towards higher ground that can easily be seen in the distance.

Follow the footpath which can clearly be seen in the grass, through a further gate to stepping stones across Bleakley Dyke, then Kissing Gate Steps, up the steep hill to a stile. Continue on path heading for single tree on left, together with 3 upright stones. Pass through the gate by the posts uphill towards a post on the left.

You will then encounter a farmyard which belongs to Harthill Moor Farm, at which time climb over the stile. The drive then bends to the left (arrowed on stone post), and then bears right towards a road which if Cliff Lane. Go across the road and immediately in front you will see an access point indicating the route to Robin Hood’s Stride.

Along the way take note of four stones that can readily be identified to your left in the adjacent field. These are the remnants of the original 9 stone circle dating back to The Bronze Age *.

A good coffee spot would be upon reaching Robin Hood’s Stride * - an imposing rock formation which is sometimes referred to as Mock Beggars’ Hall, owing to its similarity with a turreted building when viewed from the nearby village of Elton.*

Walk back down the banking towards the fence on your left, climbing the stile and turning right down the lane to Crancliffe Tor, an area of large gritstone boulders, which should then be to your left. In these boulders there is a large cave, known as Hermit’s Cave*, which has a carved crucifix on the back wall.

Pass through the gate and down a grassy slope past and downhill on a path which is part of the Limestone Way, eventually reaching a tarmac path. Pass through the gate, with the main road on your left. Walk straight on, along the Limestone Way, known locally as Dudwood Lane , the path rising gradually in the general direction of the village of Elton.

You will encounter housing on your right and a farm building on your left, then keep a keen eye out for a substantial tree on your left, bearing a yellow coloured footpath sign. This indicates a path immediately to your right, leading into a field. Climb the stile and follow the footpath which gradually rises all the time in the direction of Elton which you will eventually come to. The path in some parts will probably be very muddy for most of the year owing to run-off.

You will then encounter a new sports centre to your left, after which you may see cattle grazing in the fields. The path will lead upwards to the end of the field, and to a gap between housing. Cross the lane near to disused cars and enter the graveyard of Elton Parish Church. Walk on the path in front of the church, and from there drop down steps leading to a road which slopes to your right.

Turn right and walk down the road past cottages and gardens until you reach a fork in the road. The tarmac road bends to the right, but you should take the left-hand fork which rises gradually where you will see a sign for Youlgreave. You eventually emerge out onto a field which has a magnificent view of the route you should take, en-route back to Youlgreave itself.

Follow the path down the hillside which can be clearly identified and is well used by walkers. The path meanders diagonally to the right, passing through about four fields, before it comes out onto a road - Cliff Lane. Cross over the road and you will see a stile in a fence, climb this and follow the path which rises gradually. Carry on with a hillside to your left, heading through a gap in the wall, and heading for a further wall where you will find a stone stile.

Climb the stile where you will see a fenced and gated property which is a retreat and has a Peak Serenity sign at the access point. Walk past the site, keeping it on your left, following the path downhill. Keep to the left and reach a further stile and walk across the fields leading to Tomlinson Wood, keeping an eye out for a stone wall edge sign to Hopping Farm and Middleton and turn left.

Climb over the wall and cross a field leading to a Way Mark, - diagonally over stone stile by the left of a double gate. Then walking diagonally to gap in wall, past Bleakley Plantation. Pass through a green gate, across the gap in the wall.

Head to the top of the field where you will see a gap which has a wooden bar across it, where you will clearly see Hopping Farm, together with a caravan site below. Walk down the hill to the caravan site/Hopping Farm, where you will cross Mawstone Lane. Pass through the gate into the caravan site, walking between caravans, round the side of the farmhouse.

Continue to Middleton Dale through the gap by gravel path surrounding the farmhouse. Pass through a gate and into a field, walking diagonally to the right where you will see a new wooden gate. Follow path through woods and cross a bridge to the left of Middleton Dale. Walk down the steps crossing a further bridge to your right.

Follow the path by the River Bradford which should be on your left. You are passing through the beautiful Bradford Dale, where the footpath will come to a large grassed area, and turns first left, then immediately right, the river now on you right, which you should follow.

Follow the path until it comes to a further fence, which will exit onto the same road leading from Youlgreave itself that you traversed on the outward journey. It is a bit of a climb back up to the village, which will then take you back to All Saints Parish Church, Youlgreave, and to the start of your walk .

near to The George Hotel.