Edale Skyline Route | 20-Mile Route (Ultimate Peak District Challenge)

Views from Kinder Scout on Edale Skyline walk

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The ultimate long-distance hike in the Peak District has to be the Edale Skyline walk.

The Edale Skyline route is a well known fell running race but of course, you can do it as a long-distance walking challenge too! It takes you along the ridges and hills surrounding the Hope Valley high above Edale village.

Although the Skyline route can be started from various locations, including Castleton and Edale, by starting the walk from Hope it is directly on the walk so you’re not adding any extra miles!

Here you will find details on how to get to the start of the walk at Hope, route information, map, GPX file, useful tips, plus a detailed step by step guide of the walk.

Edale Skyline walk from Edale

(I’ve also included walk information and the GPX file for the Edale Skyline route from Edale at the bottom of the post, in case you prefer to start there, although Edale is a popular place to hike from so it can be very busy).

Have you done the Edale Skyline hike yet? Let me know how you did in the comments

Edale Skyline route from Hope

Walking up Win Hill
Walking up Win Hill overlooking Ladybower Reservoir

Walk information

Walk type: Long challenging circular walk

Distance: 20 miles/32 km

Walk time: 8-10 hours

Total ascent: 1,252 m/4,107 ft

Highest point: 622 m/2,040 ft

Walk highlights: Views of Ladybower Reservoir, Win Hill, Hope Cross, Kinder Plateau, Crowden Rocks, Mam Tor, The Great Ridge, Lose Hill

gpx file

Edale Skyline walk map

Edale Skyline walk map

Click for OS online map

Walk start point

Start grid reference: SK 180 832

Car parking address: Hope Train Station

There is a small car park at Hope train station, or alternatively, you can park on the street. (Both free parking)

Public transport

Nearest train station: Hope train station (0 mile/0 km) – Start for this walk!

The Edale Skyline walk that I’ve plotted starts and ends at Hope train station in the Derbyshire Peak District.

Facilities on the walk

There are public toilets available at the start of the walk at Hope station.

However, for the remainder of the walk, there are no toilets on the route. Once you reach the busy sections of Kinder Scout there are less discreet areas to go, Brown Knoll section is very open as it’s all flagstoned but around Lord’s Seat there are a few spots.

Once you reach Mam Tor and the Great Ridge there is no-where, as it’s a very busy path! But no long until you reach Hope!

Other useful information

If you’re doing this hike in summer, most of the route isn’t too muddy so you can wear hiking shoes or trail runners but for a winter hike you’re probably better with a lightweight pair of waterproof boots – (lightweight to stop blisters and waterproof to keep your feet dry!)

Cotswold Outdoor has a great range of hiking footwear – plus a footwear clearance range where you might pick up a bargain!

Walking on the edge near Crookstone Out Moor
Walking on the edge near Crookstone Out Moor

The Edale Skyline Challenge is a tough and challenging walk. Since it’s a circular walk of some distance there aren’t many options to shorten the route as you’re walking around the ridge.

However, for a few options to shorten the circular walk, read my ideas at the end of the route description.

The route has sections which are straightforward as you’re following the edge of the Edale Skyline but in poor weather, it’s very easy to take the wrong turn so take a map and compass with you (see below).

Water on your walk – We recommend a filter water bottle for your Peak District walks, it saves you carrying extra weight on this long hike and you can fill up safely and drink water from the streams on the route.

Also for after your walk, take a lightweight pair of shoes or sandals (I love my Teva Sandals) – your feet will love you! And a boot bag to stop your car stinking of mud and sweaty feet!

Edale Skyline walk – Second time I used ‘Peak District Walks’ (after using it for 9 Edge Walk). I found this walk and decided why not do 2 challenges in 1 week!
 
Once again the walk did not disappoint, make sure you have plenty of battery power for lots of photos!!
 
Thanks for all the hiking inspo! This website is now on my bookmarks
Erica @peaks_paws_hikes / Instagram

Other useful information

Check the weather for your walk location and hills

Edale weather up on the Skyline route can be very unpredictable so be prepared for all conditions!

Ordnance Survey Walk Map

The map that covers the Hope Valley and this walk is OL1 – Peak District (Dark Peak Area)

Buy a paper map at outdoor shops or shop online at Amazon or Ordnance Survey

Check prices here with Ordnance Survey, there are options to buy either 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!

For online maps, you can get via OS Online App or Viewranger App.

Check prices here for the one month or yearly option with OS Online App. 

 

Want to read later? Save the walk to Pinterest

Edale Skyline walk - The Great Ridge

Edale Skyline walk route

Stage 1 – Hope Station to Win Hill

Looking back towards Hope
Looking back towards Hope

Distance: 2 miles/3.2 km

Grid reference SK 180 832

Start your Skyline challenge from Hope train station, cross the bridge and take the footpath on the other side. The walk takes you into a field, turn right over the small wooden bridge and over the next two fields.

Turn left up the road, then right and left again onto a footpath that takes you up to the path with views across to Ladybower Reservoir.

As you reach the path where Parkin Clough meets turn left and ascend to Win Hill summit, your first summit on the Edale Skyline route, marked with a trig point.

Views of Ladybower Reservoir
Views of Ladybower Reservoir from Win Hill

Stage 2 – Win Hill to Ringing Roger

Distance: 5.3 mile/8.5 km

Grid reference SK 186 850

From the trig point at Win Hill, descend down on to the path and follow this for about 4 km, all the way down a track until you reach Hope Cross.

On this part of the walk on a clear day, you have beautiful views of the Edale Skyline hills around the Hope Valley in front of you.

Edale Skyline | Peak District
Looking at the full Edale Skyline | Peak District

Then it’s time to ascend again via Crookstone Out Moor. The path here follows the edge and takes you along to Ringing Roger, where there are a large group of rocks.

From here, then take the path on your left, doubling back towards the edge.

Shorten the walk

If you need to shorten the walk you can descend into Edale village at this point.

Rocks near Ringing Roger
Rocks near Ringing Roger

Stage 3 – Ringing Roger to Near Edale Rocks

Distance: 3.7 miles/6 km

Grid reference SK 125 872

Continue walking along the edge, as you walk along the Edale Skyline on a clear day you can see all the way along to Win Hill, the start of your walk.

Kinder Scout Peak District
Grindslow Knoll from Kinder Scout Peak District

There’s also the beautiful Grindslow Knoll, not part of the route but a great hill. As you follow the path around you’ll reach a path giving you the option to go up here! (Option to shorten walk here)

Make sure you continue walking west towards Crowden Tower, which is the halfway mark on the walk. (Option to shorten hike here)

Crowden Tower on Edale Skyline walk
Crowden Tower on Edale Skyline walk

At Crowden Tower, make your way through the boulders which are dotted around on this section. There are various different ways through here, but if you stick to the lower tracks you’ll eventually make your way out onto the flagstones that lead to Noe Stool

From Noe Stool, you can see the iconic Edale Rocks, but you now want to head down a single track to a large cairn.

Stage 4 – Near Edale Rocks to Mam Tor

Distance: 4.7 miles/7.6 km

Grid reference SK 07956 86506

At the cairn, this is where you join a short section of the Pennine Way. Follow the path as it descends to a narrow track.

Once you reach the track go through the gate on your right then keep walking in a southerly direction to Brown Knoll.

This section of the Edale Skyline challenge is particularly remote, but the flagstoned path means you can’t get lost (if you stay on it!)

Lord's Seat looking towards Mam Tor
Lord’s Seat looking towards Mam Tor

Follow the path, until you reach a track, turn right here for a short distance, before then turning left as you head up to Rushup Edge, then along to Lord’s Seat.

Be sure to take the lower path that descends to meet the road, before then taking the path up to Mam Tor summit.

Mam Tor trig point
Mam Tor trig point

Useful information

Once you leave the Pennine Way to head up to Brown Knoll there’s no shorter way back to Hope. You can continue on the Pennine Way, heading down Jacob’s Ladder to go a lower level route but the distance is pretty much the same.

Stage 5 – Mam Tor to Hope Station

Distance: 4.5 mile/7.2 km

Grid reference SK 127 836

This is the most popular sections of the Edale Skyline walk as Mam Tor is very accessible from both Edale and Castleton, as well as a car park close by.

Follow the Great Ridge all the way, up over Back Tor, then on to the final summit Lose Hill.

Great Ridge towards Back Tor
Great Ridge towards Back Tor

Once you’ve reached Lose Hill, you can then ascend a couple of routes back down to the road that leads you to Hope Station.

Do you have any more questions about the Edale Skyline hike? Ask me in the comments below.

More options for this walk

As mentioned, you can start the route from Edale, which as you can see adds a considerable amount on to the walk, an extra 4-miles/6 km and an extra 355 metres of ascent. But if you like a challenge… 🙂

Edale Skyline walk from Edale

Walk type: Long circular walk

Distance: 24 miles/38 km

Walk time: 10-12 hours

Total ascent: 1,607 m/5,272 ft

Highest point: 622 m/2,040 ft

gpx file

Shorten the walk

There are limited options to shorten the Edale Skyline walk unless you turn back before the halfway mark (Crowden Tower) but on a bad weather day, you can descend into Edale from various points on the walk.

From Edale, you would need to walk up over Hollins Cross and then drop down into Hope. This option is about 5 miles from Edale.

You can leave the Edale Skyline route at Ringing Roger, Grindsbrook Clough or Crowden Clough to shorten the route.

Alternatively, there is a train station in Edale which you can catch back to Hope station. The trains leave approximately 36 minutes past the hour and take 15 minutes.

Please feel free to ask me any questions in the comments below.

More walks in the Peak District

Love the walks in the Dark Peak Area of the Peak District?

Maybe you’d like to start with some shorter walks in the Peak District or you might like these Peak District circular walks. These make great training routes for the Skyline hike as they include sections of the route

Save me to your Peak District boards on Pinterest

Edale Skyline walk - Kinder Scout

Edale Skyline walk - Lose Hill The Great Ridge

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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.

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