Robin Hood’s Stride Walk + Bradford Dale From Elton | 8-Mile Route

Robin Hood's Stride walk Peak District

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The Robin Hood’s Stride walk takes you on a beautiful circular walk, including Bradford Dale in the Derbyshire Peak District. It’s a wonderful walk for everyone to enjoy as there’s plenty to see and do on the walk.

Although Robin Hood’s Stride only makes up a small portion of the walk, it’s a great highlight when you reach it, as well as the other things to explore close by, including the very intriguing Hermit’s Cave!

Hermit's Cave in the Peak District
Hermit’s Cave in the Peak District

The Bradford Dale section is wonderful for nature and bird lovers, with many different bird species spotted on the trail and lots of mushrooms growing in the wood areas.

Here you will find details on how to get to the start of the walk at Elton village, route information, facilities on the walk, plus a detailed step by step guide of the walk.

Let me know in the comments if you’ve done this Robin Hood walk and what you think!

Robin Hood’s Stride Walk from Elton

One of the many stiles on the walk
One of the many stiles on the walk

Walk information

Walk type: Medium circular walk

Distance: 8 miles/12.5 km

Walk time: 3.5-4.5 hours

Total ascent: 403 m/1,322 ft

Highest point: 276 m/906 ft

Walk highlights: Bradford Dale, books in the wall, Robin Hood’s Stride, Hermit’s Cave

gpx file

Robin Hood’s Stride walk map

Robin Hood's Stride and Bradford Dale map
Robin Hood’s Stride and Bradford Dale walk map
Click for OS online map

Walk start point

Church in Elton village, Peak District
Church in Elton village

Start grid reference: SK 221 609

Car parking address: Main St, Elton, DE4 2BW

There is no car park but there are places available on the road near the church where you can start the walk from.

Parking Cost

Free parking

Public transport

Nearest train station: Matlock train station (6 mile/10 km)

From the train station at Matlock, you would then need to catch a bus to Eton.

Facilities on the walk

Bridge near Youlgreave
Detour here to the public toilets in Youlgreave

There are no public toilets available at the start of the walk at Eton.

On the walk route, there are no toilets, however, if you needed a toilet there are two options, both slightly off the route, but there’s a public toilet at Middleton (400 m) and also one at Youlgreave (200 m) too.

You’ll spot the Duke of York pub in the village, but this is only open from 8.30 pm, so no good for a post-walk drink!

However, there is a local pub not far away in the village of Winster called Bowling Green.

Other useful information

Cliffs opposite Robin Hood's Stride
Steep cliffs opposite Robin Hood’s Stride

There are some steep drops from the cliffs near Robin Hood’s Stride so please be careful, especially if you’re doing the walk with children.

Some parts of the walk can get extremely muddy so walking boots are recommended for this route!

There are also numerous wooden and stone stiles, along the route that might not be that easy with a larger dog (I met a couple who had had to lift their dog over a couple!)

Robin Hood gets quite a few mentions in the Peak District, as it’s not too far from his home in Sherwood Forest in Nottingham. There’s Robin Hood’s cave on Stanage Edge and also Robin Hood’s well near Padley Gorge.

Limestone Way signs
Limestone Way signs (plus look for the green circular sign)

The route is fairly well signposted when you are on the Limestone Way but less so in other parts, although there are public footpath signs. 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!

 

 

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

Robin Hood's Stride walk Peak District

Robin Hood’s Stride walk route

Stage 1 – Elton to Tomlinson Wood

Distance: 1 miles/1.6 km

Grid reference SK 221 609

Public footpath sign to Youlgreave
Follow the sign to Youlgreave

From the road outside Elton church (with the church on your right), continue down the road, then take the path forking off left, signposted Youlgreave.

Continue heading in a northerly direction, through a narrow gate, then after 50 m bear right following the fingerpost sign to Youlgreave (Cliff Farm). In the distance, you’ll see Anthony Hill as you walk through various fields with wooden gates between them.

Gate on the route near Anthony Hill
A gate on the route near Anthony Hill

Then another small gate will lead you to a road, cross the road (Cliff Lane) and then continue along the path descending gradually to Cliff Farm, via a wooden stile, then a stone stile in the corner of the field.

From the farm, head directly north, over another stone stile, towards Tomlinson Wood (a small wooded area). There’s then a very small stone stile to squeeze through, walk around the edge of the woods, to an opening in the dry stone wall.

Stage 2 – Tomlinson Wood to Bradford Dale

Distance: 1.4 mile/2.3 km

Grid reference SK 217 624

Go through the opening in the dry stone wall, between the two stone pillars (one with arrows pointing left towards Middleton and Hoppin Farm). Then head diagonally across to the boundary wall and follow the wall east to a stone stile.

Stone pillar with wording
Bear left through the gap in the stone wall

Walk across the next three fields, over stiles, with Bleakley Plantation on your left. You’ll reach a fingerpost signposted Public Footpath (in three directions) and Youlgreave. Keep walking in a north-easterly direction (signposted Public Footpath).

You’ll then walk through another four fields, across stone stiles, before reaching a wooden gate that crosses the road.

Follow the path down towards a caravan park (the public footpath takes you through the middle).

Sign to Middleton Dale and Robin Hood's Stride
Sign on the way through the caravan park

You’ll see a signpost for Robin Hood’s Stride and Middleton Dale (keep heading towards Middleton Dale), it’s a circular walk so don’t panic, you’ll head towards Robin Hood’s Stride later on the walk.

The path takes you through a stone stile and the driveway of the house next to the trail and out the other side through a small gate into a field.

Head down across the field, through a gate, then round with the trees on your right.

Follow the stream on your left, down some steps towards Bradford Dale.

Note – (At this point you can head towards Middleton if you need a toilet!)

Stage 3 – Bradford Dale to Youlgreave

Distance: 1.2 miles/1.9 km

Grid reference SK 199 633

As you reach the beginning of Bradford Dale on your walk, look out for the unique books in the wall, next to the old sheep dips! If you read from top to bottom, you can about them.

Beginning of Bradford Dale
Beginning of Bradford Dale

Now you simply follow the beautiful Bradford River through Bradford Dale, you’ll go past a bridge on your left, then through a gate and on to the Limestone Way.

As you walk along Bradford Dale you’ll notice numerous sluice gates, which were used to manage the water levels, dating back to the 19th century.

Sluice gates along Bradford Dale walk
Sluice gates along Bradford Dale walk

It’s also wonderful for bird lovers, you will probably see numerous ducks and swans, as well as dippers, herons and many more.

Walk along the path until you reach a beautiful stone bridge at the turning to Youlgreave.

Note – (This is the second point where you can pop to the public toilets in Youlgreave.)

Go through the gate, continue walking next to Bradford River, until the next bridge.

Stage 4 – Youlgreave to Robin Hood’s Stride

Distance: 2 miles/3.2 km

Grid reference SK 213 640

Once you’ve crossed the bridge at Youlgreave, follow the road for a short distance, before turning onto a footpath on the left at a fingerpost signposted Limestone Way.

Follow the trail through the next five fields, then onto to flagstones to a mini bridge across Bleakey Dike. Head up the flagstones on the other side and across the field. You’ll spot a random stile in the middle of the field!

Continue following the Limestone Way, through a small wooded area, then out on the road.

Stone Circle near Robin Hood's Stride
Stone Circle near Robin Hood’s Stride

Turn right up the road for a short distance and you’ll reach a sign saying Robin Hood’s Stride 1/4 away. But first, if you want a little detour, follow the boundary fence around for 200 m to the Stone Circle.

There’s no right of way through the field so the best thing to do is backtrack, then walk towards the base of the rocks known as, Robin Hood’s Stride.

Stage 5 – Robin Hood’s Stride to Elton

Top of Robin Hood's Stride
Exploring the top of Robin Hood’s Stride

Distance: 2.2 mile/3.5 km

Grid reference SK 224 623

As you reach the base of Robin Hood’s Stride you have two options to go exploring! The first is to turn right and scramble up to Robin Hood’s Stride. The second option is to turn left up the footpath, an area called Cratcliffe Rocks, common with people bouldering.

There are several trails up to the top, where you get wonderful views, but the secret spot is the Hermit’s Cave at the base of the cliffs, situated at the most southern point.

Once you’ve finished exploring the area, hop back onto the Limestone Way and follow along the track. You then go through a gate next to a cattle grid and follow the road heading south for about 800 metres.

Back into Elton Village, Peak District
Back into Elton Village, Peak District

Then at the crossroads, turn right back into the village of Elton at the start of the walk.

Do you have any more questions about this walk, maybe what to wear on your hike or any other questions? Ask me in the comments below.

Additional walk options

Shorten the walk

Views at the top of Robin Hood's Stride
Views at the top of Robin Hood’s Stride

Want to shorten this walk, including Robin Hood’s Stride?

You can start the walk at Elton, follow the route instructions, stage 1 to Tomlinson Wood, instead of bearing left, walk straight on, descending towards to Harthill Moor Farm.

At the footpath, turn left, then after 700 metres, you’ll reach the road, with the signpost to Robin Hood’s Stride (at the end of stage 4).

This option is 4 miles/6.6 km.

Full route, map + GPX file here

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.

Have you done this walk, let me know any feedback in the comments. 

Did you get beautiful views from Robin Hood’s Stride? Did you find the cave? Tell me in the comments below.

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Robin Hood's Stride walk views

Robin Hood's Stride walk views

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