This Derbyshire Dales walk is beautiful but comes with a few challenges at the beginning of the walk!
The route takes you from Elton village, along Gratton Dale, then on to Long Dale, before looping back round to Anthony Hill, where you can go explore or choose the path alongside the hill.
For the beginning of the walk, it’s low-level through the Derbyshire Dales before climbing up to see beautiful Peak District views from Long Dale and again at Anthony Hill.
On my walk, I encountered some flooding on the path. Please read the details in useful information to check if this route is suitable for you.
Here you will find details on how to get to the start of the walk at Elton, route information and challenges, plus a detailed step by step guide of the walk.
I would always recommend that you take a paper map with you on the walk, details below on which map you need for this walk.
Let me know in the comments if you’ve done this walk and if you had any challenges at the beginning of Gratton Dale.
Derbyshire Dales Walk from Elton
Derbyshire Dales walk mapClick for OS online map
Walk start point
Start grid reference: SK 221 609
Car parking address: Elton village, Well Street, Matlock, DE4 2BW
There is no car park in Elton but there’s a road next to the church in the village which is suitable for parking.
Nearest train station: Matlock train station (6 mile/10 km)
Facilities on the walk
There are no public toilets available at the start of the walk at Elton.
There are are also no toilets or any other facilities on the rest of the route. The nearest village with public toilets is Middleton, which is about 1.5 km off the route. However, it’s only open from Easter to end of October. Exact point included in walk details below
Other useful information
At the beginning of Gratton Dale, the path was incredibly flooded, so much so that I had to detour through the undergrowth (which was fairly challenging).
I did the walk in the month of February, so I’d like to think during the summer months this route wouldn’t be so flooded. (I’ll go back to check or please let me know in the comments). Read stage 2 walk instructions for more detailed information.
The route is signposted in some parts but I would always recommend you take a map and compass (see below).
Check the weather for your walk location and hills
Ordnance Survey Walk Map
The map required for this walk is OL24 – Peak District (White Peak Area)
Buy a paper map at outdoor shops or shop online at Amazon or Ordnance Survey
Check prices here with Ordnance Survey, you can buy a standard map or a waterproof one. You can sometimes find cheaper deals on Amazon, but the Ordnance Survey website sometimes has discounts for buying more than one map!
And don’t forget your compass.
There are lots to choose from, I recommend the Silva Expedition compass, it’s more expensive but a valuable piece of kit!
Check prices here for the one month or yearly option with OS Online App.
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Derbyshire Dales walk route
Stage 1 – Elton to Gratton Dale
Distance: 0.6 miles/1 km
Grid reference SK 221 609
From the side road next to the church in Elton Village, turn right onto the main road.
Continue all the way down Gratton Lane until you reach Dale End Farm, this is a relatively quiet road but keep an eye out for cars!
At the red telephone box, turn left and follow the public footpath sign along Gratton Dale.
Stage 2 – Gratton Dale to Long Dale
Distance: 1.2 mile/2 km
Grid reference SK 211 613
At the beginning of Gratton Dale, you’ll see an old limekiln on your right. Then the path can get challenging!
On the day I walked the route, much of the Gratton Dale path at the very beginning was very flooded. I found a route up through the undergrowth, but if you are wearing welly boots you could have waded through!
The first 300 metres were the most flooded sections, once you’re past this the path is muddy in places but I didn’t have any more flooded path issues!
Stage 3 – Long Dale to Home Farm
Distance: 1.8 miles/3 km
Grid reference SK 201 596
Go through the gate then follow Long Dale all the way until you reach a second gate.
There is an unusual set of three stones next to the gate here, with engravings on. Once you’ve gone through the gate then follow the path heading slightly uphill.
Keep next to the boundary wall and follow the footpath through a series of fields and gates all the way until you see a sign for a footpath through a rusty gate.
Follow this path all the way until you reach the road.
Stage 4 – Home Farm to Anthony Hill
Distance: 1.8 miles/3 km
Grid reference SK 195 618
As you reach the road next to Home Farm, turn right and continue all the way to a T-junction in the road, next to the Cheese Factory (now cottages).
Turn left here and follow the road uphill, as you reach the top there’s a group of llamas that live on the land next to the farm.
At this point follow the fingerpost signposted public footpath on your left past the llama field and farm buildings. Continue up the track then through a metal gate and through over a stone stile into the fields near Anthony Hill.
Cross the field, then if you want you can scramble up to the top of the hill and along through the woods to Anthony Hill or simply keep to the footpath that runs next to the hill.
Stage 5 – Anthony Hill to Elton
Distance: 0.6 mile/1 km
Grid reference SK 217 615
If you’ve opted to explore Anthony Hill, at the far end there’s a steep descent through the undergrowth. Or alternatively, retrace your steps for a less steep descent.
This area is popular with trail motorbikes, so look out for them on the path.
Then you simply follow the lower trail all the way back to the road. Here you can see Burycliffe Troughs, a series of three troughs which capture water from a hillside spring.
Do you have any more questions about this Derbyshire Dales walk? Ask me in the comments below.
Shorten the walk
There aren’t many options to shorten this Derbyshire Dales walk. At stage 4 of the walk, instead of turning left up the road you can turn right at the historic Cheese Factory and continue all the way back to Elton church.
This only saves about 1 km, but the terrain is much easier since it’s all on the road, instead of fields. You’ll also miss out exploring Anthony Hill which adds extra time.
In distance, it’s a small saving, but in time you’ll probably save longer.
More walks in the Peak District
Love the walks in the White Peak Area of the Peak District? You might like these Peak District circular walks or routes exploring more of the Dales in the Peak District.
- Robin Hood Strides walk from Elton
- Shutlingsloe walk
- Chee Dale walk from Millers Dale
- Monk’s Dale walk from Millers Dale
- Three Shires walk
Have you done this walk, let me know any feedback in the comments.
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Please note 'Peak District Walks' accepts no liability through any injuries or accidents that may result from walking this route. We always recommend you take a paper map and compass on your walk. Read more here.