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Peak District Walk
Flash, Knotbury & Three Shires Head from Gradbach

Nat Park - Peak District - The Roaches

County/Area - Staffordshire & Derbyshire & Cheshire

Author - Lou Johnson

Length - 8.2 miles / 13.3 km    Ascent - 1100 feet / 333 metres

Time - 5 hours 10 minutes    Grade - easy/mod

Start - OS grid reference SJ998662
Lat 53.192886 // Long -2.00445
Postcode SK17 0SU (approx. location only)
what3words start pillow.enveloped.obscuring

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Ordnance Survey Explorer OL24Sheet Map1:25kBUY
Anquet OS Explorer OL24Digital Map1:25kBUY
Ordnance Survey Landranger 119Sheet Map1:50kBUY
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It is recommended you take a map. The preferred scale is 1:25k.

Walk Route Description

Photo from the walk - Flash, Knotbury & Three Shires Head from Gradbach

This Peak District walk explores the upper reaches of the Dane Valley and also visits the village of Flash, which is claimed to be the highest village in England. The route is generally easy to follow although an OS 1:25000 map is helpful as there are many paths and tracks in this area.

The start is the small free car park beside the River Dane at Gradbach (grid ref. SJ998662). Exit the car park and turn left along the lane or take the less obvious path from inside the car park that follows the river bank upstream. Turn left over the footbridge and walk across a field generally following the line of the river to another lane. You are now on the Dane Valley Way and this will be followed for much of the route. Stiles and gates generally have a DVW logo attached. Turn right along the lane and take the first left. This is a driveway to a house and you need to take the signed footpath that leads into a field. This path crosses a number of fields with a wall to your left. Continue until you reach a cast-iron footpath sign provided by the Peak & Northern Footpaths Society (grid ref. SK008670).

Turn right here along a track. Where the track bends sharp right take the footpath on the left. This leads to Wicken Walls (grid ref. SK014671). Go past the buildings on your left and continue straight ahead to reach a junction of paths and a footbridge (grid ref. SK015671). Continue straight ahead and climb out of the valley to reach the access track for Axe Edge Green Farm. Turn right down this track and take the footpath on your left (grid ref. SK020671). This leads up to a lane. Turn left along the lane climbing steadily towards the village of Flash. Reaching the first buildings in the village, turn sharp left on a track. Almost immediately take the footpath on the right that takes you across three fields to rejoin the track.

Turn right along the track and continue to grid ref. SK024676 where you turn right to follow the path over Wolf Edge to descend to a lane (grid ref. SK019680). Turn left along the lane. Take the first right and walk up into Knotbury. Where the tarmac lane bears left, turn right onto a track and follow this across Knotbury Common and down to a tarmac lane (grid ref. SK015688). Cross the tarmac lane, cross into Derbyshire and continue up to the cottage at Blackclough. Pass the cottage and follow the signed path half right to join the Dane Valley Way (a clear track) at grid ref. SK012692). Bear left along this track and continue through Reeve Edge Quarries to drop down and cross the River Dane. Climb up the other side (into Cheshire) on a clear path and continue through the spoil heaps of Danebower Quarry.

Just below the old chimney bear left to follow the Dane Valley Way past a derelict building (on your right) and drop to follow the riverside path down to Three Shires Head. This is a perfect place for a picnic. To continue the walk, stay on the western side of the river and follow the clear track uphill to a road at Cut-thorn (grid ref. SK002680). Go right along this road for a short way before veering left onto a footpath just past the buildings. This paths loops around Robin's Clough and leads to Parks (grid ref.SJ999671). From here take the access track downhill towards the road, to follow the short section of footpath on your left for the final section of the descent.

Turn right along the lane passing Hole-edge on your left. The lane turns sharp left, passes the entrance to Bennettshitch, and then descends slightly to reach a section of unfenced road. Bear left here onto a path that descends down to another lane beside an old chapel (grid ref. SK000664). Turn left along the lane, cross the bridge over the River Dane, and take the first footpath on the right, which you used at the start of the walk. Follow the path across the field and back to the car park.

Other walks nearby

Walk 2577 Hawk's Nest, Goldstitch Moss & Lud's Church - moderate - 8.0 miles/13 km

Walk 1596 Lud's Church and Roach End from Gradbach - easy/mod - 4.5 miles/7.3 km

Walk 1598 Lud's Church, Back Forest & Clough Head from Gradbach - easy/mod - 6.8 miles/11.1 km

Walk 3323 Three Shires Head & Knotbury from Gradbach - easy/mod - 7.1 miles/11.5 km

Walk 1652 Three Shires Head from Danebower Hollow - easy - 4.5 miles/7.3 km

Walk 2233 Flash & Three Shires Head from Danebower Hollow - easy/mod - 6.2 miles/10.1 km

Walk 1178 The Roaches and Lud's Church - moderate - 7.3 miles/11.8 km

Walk 1707 The Roaches short circular - easy/mod - 5.0 miles/8.1 km

Walk 3030 The Roaches & Lud's Church - easy/mod - 7.0 miles/11.4 km

Walk 1728 Axe Edge Moor & Three Shires Head - easy/mod - 7.2 miles/11.7 km

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