Walk 1651 - printer friendly version
Monsal Trail & Ashford-in-the-Water from Lees Bottom Walk
Author - Lou Johnson
Length - 8.8 miles / 14.2 km
Ascent - 1000 feet / 303 metres
Grade - easy/mod
Start - OS grid reference SK170706
Lat 53.2321680 + Long -1.7467831
Postcode SK17 9UH (approx. location only)
For the most part this Peak District walk follows well used paths and trails. Do remember that there is a lengthy ascent towards the end of the route through Great Shacklow Wood. The start is the pay and display car park at Lees Bottom (grid ref. SK170706) where there are also public toilets. Refreshments can be obtained at Monsal Head and in the village of Ashford-in-the-Water.
Exit the carpark onto the A6 main road. Cross over to the signed path, descend the awkward stile and follow into the woodland. Where the path splits keep right and continue down to the River Wye. Follow this pleasant path upstream through Monsal Dale. Just before the old railway viaduct turn left and climb up to the old railway track. Turn right and cross the viaduct. Then take the path on the left that climbs up to Monsal Head with its wonderful views across the dale and railway viaduct.
From the road junction at Monsal Head take the lane towards Little Longstone. Take the first footpath on your right opposite the chapel (grid ref. SK187716). Continue along this path to turn left onto the Monsal Trail. There follows a section of easy walking going past Thornbridge Hall on your right to cross the A6020. About three metres further on descend to the walled lane and walk south (grid ref. SK213707). Continue on this bridleway across Cracknowl to reach the River Wye. Cross the river and walk up to the A6. Turn right along the A6 passing Lumford Mill on your right. At grid ref. SK209690) take the footpath on your right. This path loops along beside the River Wye before returning to the A6.
Turn right along the A6 cross the old bridge over the River Wye and walk into the centre of Ashford-in-the-Water. Turn left down Greaves Lane, Left again into Church Street, continuing to cross the bridge on your right over the River Wye to the A6. Turn right along the A6, taking the lane on your left (signed to Sheldon). Where the road bends to the left, go straight ahead onto the signed footpath at grid ref. SK189694. This path leads alongside the River Wye. Ignore paths off to your left and continue straight ahead. You will enter Great Shacklow Wood. Initially the path stays by the river but eventually climbs steadily through the wood. Reaching a steep open field at the end of the wood, turn right and descend back to the start.