Stats: 12.4 miles and 2170 feet of ascent
Endless in the Hope Valley, with lots to choose from; a great place to spend a weekend riding. 18 Bikes in Castleton is also a great shop for bits and pieces
A rollicking eight around the Hope Valley. Cave Dale is one of the most technical descents around these parts, so be ready to hang on tight. The route across Mam Tor to Hollins Cross and down to Edale is sublime.
1. Head towards the Shivering Mountain, then fork right towards Treak Cliff Cavern. Pass this on the long northward zig that uses to be the old A625. This was abandoned in 1979 due to landslips and the full effect of these become apparent when you get to the southbound zag. Climb over a post-apocalyptic series of steps up and down.
2. At the top turn right towards the west, and then take the sharp right turn signposted to Barber Booth and Edale to the top of Mam Nick.
3. Turn right on bridleway just after the crest and flank Mam Tor on the north side, bouncing down to Hollin’s Cross.
4. Drop back on your left, descending to the top of Edale.
5. Head left up the valley, bearing left over a small bridge and climbing on tarmac back toward Mam Nick.
6. Where the road dinks left, turn right onto the Chapel Gate public way. This is not the beast it once was so climb steadily on well-graded chippings round the back of Rushop Edge, bearing left where it levels out.
7. Follow the edge, including a short but tricky descent back to the Mam Nick road. Retrace back to the Winnats Road then dink R-L towards Rowter Farm.
8. After a mile, turn left onto the Limestone Way. This starts innocuously enough but funnels into a superb, demanding, loose, blocky descent down Cave Dale. The only way this could be harder would be if besieged defenders were dropping boiling oil from the ruins of Peveril Castle. This makes a fine climax back into Castleton.
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