Start: Various points – Parsley Hay, Middletop, smaller car parks along the route
Distance: 17 miles
Terrain: Off road, traffic free
Bike Types: Mountain bikes, Hybrid, Road Bike
Grading : Easy
The High Peak Railway line opened in 1831 and was designed to carry minerals and products between Cromford Canal and Peak Forest Canal. After the closure of the line, the Peak District National Park bought the route in 1971 and opened it into a traffic free trail for cyclists, horse riders and walkers.
The High Peak Trail runs for 17 miles from Dowlow (53.2059°N 1.8349°W) near Buxton to High Peak Junction at Cromford (53.1004°N 1.5354°W). The two main visitor centres are at Parsely Hay and Middleton Top where there cafes, toilets and bike hire. There are a number of free and paid smaller car parks along the route too.
The trail gives you stunning vistas of the Derbyshire Dales countryside between Middleton Top and Parsley Hay. Because it is traffic-free for walkers and cyclists this trail has an abundance of wildlife – also an abundance of wildflowers in spring and the summer.
From Middleton Top, the trail climbs the short, Hopton incline then follows a long, stone-built causeway into White Peak Country. As you cycle you’ll take in stunning views and travel through some craggy cuttings on the way to Parsley Hay.
Route Map and GPX
There are cycle hire centres and bike shops at Middleton Top and Parsley Hay in addition to toilets and refreshments.
See also the High Peak Trail Map
For other trails in the area see The Carsington Water Cycle Trail