A line of dark dramatic cliffs cap the heather moors east of the Derwent Valley in the Peak District.

The highest of these cliffs, Stanage Edge, provides superb views of the Derwent & Hope Valleys, Mam Tor and Kinder Scout.

This is perhaps the most impressive gritstone escarpment in the Peak District, stretching for 3,5 miles from north to south.

Therefore, many walkers and rock climbers flock to this part of the Derbyshire countryside to enjoy majestic views along Hope Valley.

Many people also visit Stanage Edge as part of their Pride & Prejudice/Jane Eyre pilgrimage.

Stanage Edge featured in the film adaptations of both the Austen and the Brontë novel.

Jane Eyre Hathersage Trail

On a bright sunny day in August, we walked the Jane Eyre Hathersage Trail.

This 5,5-mile circular starts at the George Inn in te historical village of Hathersage.

This is the place where Charlotte Brontë arrived in 1845 by stage coach to stay with her friend Ellen Nussey at the Rectory.

Follow Baulk Lane, a signposted public footpath, out of the village and after nearly a mile (1.5km) you will see a large house with towering chimneys.

This is Brookfield Manor, which features as Vale Hall in Jane Eyre.

Next you will stumble upon North Lees Hall.

This 16th century manor is thought to have been the inspiration behind Mr Rochester’s home (Thornfield) in Jane Eyre.

The Eyre family did in fact live there in real life.

Continue along the footpath running behind the hall.

You will see the heights of Stanage Edge on the horizon ahead of you. Continue walking and follow a well-made path up on to Stanage Edge.

Then stop and enjoy the breathtakingly magnificent views!

These are the very rocks where Keira Knightley stood looking windswept in the film adaption of Pride & Prejudice.

Follow along the top of the Edge for about 1 kilometre, heading south.

There are many paths down from Stanage Edge, and it doesn’t really matter which one you take.

We took a path diagonally down off the Edge towards the car park below. Turn left out of the car park and immediately right onto the Hathersage road.

After about 200 metres take the righthand footpath across heather moorland.

Look up and see the Edge from below. You can see the rock climbers trying to make their way to the top.

Especially in August, when the heather burst into flower, Stanage Edge is the place to be!

Images by Cool Places Britain

You can easily extend this walk and head further north.

A slightly longer 6,6-mile circular takes in Dennis Knoll before climbing towards Stanage Edge. It offers magnificent views along the Derwent Valley.

Or you can walk along the Edge and head north westwards to see the summit of High Neb and Crow Chin.

When you reach Crow Chin, where the edge veers north, descend to a lower path that doubles back beneath the cliffs.

Just stop and linger for a while and take in the beauty of the Peak District!

Cool Places to Explore

Bamford Edge | Ladybower Reservoir | Haddon Hall | Chatsworth House | Monsal Dale | Curbar Edge | Kinder Scout | Lyme Park | Bakewell.