A few hours in Mam Tor Hill, Peak District Review
When I climbed Mt Snowdon in Wales I promised myself I wouldn’t hike a mountain ever again.
Well guess what? That was a lie.
To be fair Mam Tor is a hill and a hike to the top from the car park took less than an hour up a mild slope; a direct contrast to the scary 4 hour trek up Mt Snowdon. It was a very pleasant day if a bit drizzly and the area is easily accessed from Castleton.
The view travelling from Castleton was beautiful in the post-rain sunshine and I enjoyed passing through the dramatically green Hope Valley.
The car park felt less like an official parking spot and more like a nice bit of ground that happened to be next to a mountain path.
Recommended in pretty much every guide to the Peak District, no trip is complete without at least a cursory stopover at Mam Tor. Offering the best viewpoint in the area we easily accessed the hilltop via the existing path.
There were quite a few people around but the lack of surrounding foliage meant that we could keep to Covid spacing guidelines.
The area was beautiful despite the cloudiness.
We went up to the plinth marking the hilltop and took the obligatory photos.
The one piece of advice I can give is to not follow the circular path suggested by the National Trust.
I made the mistake of believing that the National Trust can be … trusted (hee).
It started off well enough.
Things went wrong after we bumped into some mountain bikers at a farmer’s gate. I don’t think that’s the reason why things went wrong, but it’s a fun detail.
I’m not sure how old the guide was, but the path suggested by the Trust took us through a mud river of a path where my bf slipped twice and ate mud.
There were bushes, steep descents and far too much mud.
It definitely felt different from the neat and easy ascent we took and I can’t recommend this to unprepared people. I had appropriate clothing and hiking shoes but approached the walk as a casual hill stroll which didn’t work. For families and OAPs I recommend coming back down the ascent path instead of attempting a circular path. The views were nice enough I guess.
We ploughed on regardless since we committed and the path we took would technically takes us to the Blue John Cavern which I wanted to visit.
The other note of interest in our walk was an area of tarmac road destroyed by landslides at 1974. I can see this area being used for a cheap disaster movie and it was no small task negotiating the large disjointed road.
Mam Tor is beautiful and the best viewpoint is easily and quickly accessible for people of all abilities. Just be prepared if you are planning to properly explore further.
Address: Mam Tor, Hope Valley S33 8WA