The weather might be getting colder, but this is no excuse to hang up your walking boots till the summer, as some of the best times to explore the English countryside is during the winter months. One route that should be experienced when the sun is low and the ground frosty is The Great Ridge.

Those who want to see the Peak District in its full glory should start with this 6.5-mile hike, which goes through some of the most picturesque parts of the region. 

It begins in Castleton, passing Treak Cliff and Blue John Cavern, which are worth visiting if you have the time. 

You will then climb to the peak of Mam Tor, otherwise known as ‘Shivering Mountain’ or ‘Mother Hill’. This summit stands at 517 metres above sea level, making it one of the most impressive peaks in the area. 

Due to its location on the edge of the Dark Peak, made up of gritstone, and the White Peak, which is predominantly limestone, it offers some of the most spectacular views of the Peak District. 

According to Visit Peak District, you can even see Manchester when the weather is clear! Though you might not be able to see the northern city during the winter months, the views of snowy peaks, foggy landscape, and frost-tipped grass make the climb worth it. 

After reaching the summit of Mam Tor, you will trek up Back Tor and Lose Hill Pike, both of which also have beautiful views of the scenery. 

.These trips are not just for walkers though, and cyclists flock to the Peaks every year to enjoy the challenging routes. Peak Hikes and Bikes is offering tours over the winter period if you want to cycle through The Great Ridge during your Christmas break.


For somewhere to stay, consider our homely Castleton B&B in the heart of the village.

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