Chee Dale Stepping Stones Walk in the Peak District

The Peak District is one of the most beautiful areas to explore in England. With stunning natural beauty, the region is perfect for a weekend away or a long holiday. And for outdoor lovers, it offers a multitude of fantastic walks. From leisurely ambles to challenging hikes, there is so much to do that you will never get bored. You could base yourself at the Peak Edge Hotel and explore everything that the National Park has to offer.

Chee Dale Stepping Stones Walk in the Peak District

Chee Dale Stepping Stones Walk from Millers Dale

One of the popular walks in the Peak District is the Chee Dale Stepping Stones Walk. This circular walk begins in the small but beautiful village of Millers Dale. The starting point is the Millers Dale Car Park from where the path leads you to a lush and beautiful gorge. You need to cross two sets of stepping stones and then the path climbs back up and connects to the Monsal Trail leading you back to the car park.

Here is the route that we followed:

1. From Millers Dale Car Park walk right along the path signposted to Wye Dale. The path is also a part of the Monsal Trail.

On this path you will spot a small wooden carved train. It is a reference to Millers Dale's railway history as it was at one time bigger than most stations in large towns. The Monsal Train Line which closed in 1968 used to carry passengers and freight for over 100 years. Local milk from Millers Dale was carried on a milk train to different parts of the country as was local stone and lime (from local limekilns).

Along the same path, you will next come across a huge lime kiln, the East Buxton Lime Kiln. This massive structure used to produce nearly 50 tonnes of quicklime a day (during 1880-1944). The demand for quicklime was huge during the 19th century and so limekilns were set up along railway routes to enable quick transportation. Today the disused limekilns are home to a variety of wildlife including insects, swifts and Daubenton's bats.

The Lime Kilns Wildlife Hotel on the Chee Dale Walk

2. Continue on the path and you will soon approach a bridge. Just before the bridge is a signpost and a path on the right that leads you down to the dale.

Once you have descended down, turn right and follow the path along the River Wye with the river on your left.

Chee Dale Walk
>Chee Dale Walk
Chee Dale Walk

3. After a short distance, you will reach an intersection of paths. Continue walking straight with River Wye still on your left.

4. Continue on the path and you will cross a couple of footbridges.

Chee Dale Walk

Chee Dale Walk

We spotted a group of abseilers on this part of the route.

Abseilers along the Chee Dale Walking Trail

5. Continue along and you reach the first set of Stepping Stones. The Chee Dale Stepping Stones are set along the edge of the river rather than across it. They are a fun way to traverse the river. But do take care when the water levels are high as some of the stones may be covered in water and be slippery.

Chee Dale Stepping Stones - Set 1
Chee Dale Stepping Stones - Set 1

6. Once the first set of Stepping Stones have been crossed, continue along the path. You will reach another stone bridge.

7. At this point, cross the wooden footbridge and continue along the path. River Wye will now be on your right.

Chee Dale Walk
Chee Dale Walk

8. Continue on the path and you will arrive at another wooden footbridge. Cross it and turn left. Continue on the path with River Wye again on your left now.

Chee Dale Walk

9. Very soon you reach the second set of Stepping Stones. Again, it is set along the edge of the river. Cross the stepping stones.

Chee Dale Stepping Stones - Set 2

10. Continue on the path.

Chee Dale Walk

11. Very soon you will reach some steps along the footpath. Climb up the steps and you will be back on the Monsal Trail.

Chee Dale Walk

12. Take the path signposted towards Bakewell.

Chee Dale Walk

13. You will cross three tunnels on your way back to the car park. First up is the Rusher Cutting Tunnel which is one of the tunnels on the Monsal Trail. The Monsal Trail runs along the former Midland Railway line between Blackwell Mill in Chee Dale and Coombs Road in Bakewell. It is a traffic-free route and used by pedestrians, cyclists, horse riders and wheelchair users.

Inside the Rusher Cutting Tunnel

14. Next on the path is the Chee Tor No 2 Tunnel. 

Chee Tor No2 Tunnel

15. And the last tunnel on your way back is the Chee Tor Tunnel. The tunnels are lit but be aware of cyclists coming up from behind you.

Chee Tor Tunnel
Chee Tor Tunnel

16. The circular path ends at Millers Dale car park. There is a cafe on site, perfect to grab a well-earned treat.

17. If you have time, drop in at The Goods Shed. When the railway line was operational, the Goods Shed was used to unload and re-load the cargo from the goods wagons. Today, the Goods Shed tells the story of the Monsal Trail and Millers Dale and why it is the most popular all-user trail in the Peak District National Park.

The Good Shed at Millers Dale

Where to park for Chee Dale Stepping Stones?

The most convenient place to park for the Chee Dale Walk is the Millers Dale car park. The car park has around 80 spaces (3 diasbled) and is a Pay & Display car park. The parking machine accepts both cards and coins.

Millers Dale Car Park

When we visited, the car parking charges were: £1.50 (up to 1 hour), £2.50 (up to 2 hours), £4 (up to 4 hours and £4.75 for all day parking. For motorcycles, the charge was £1.50 for all day parking.

Millers Dale Car Park | Near Buxton, Derbyshire SK17 8SN

Grid reference: SK 1385 7328
What3Words: ///thighs.suddenly.tabs

The car park can get very busy, especially during weekends and bank holidays, so plan to arrive early to get a parking space.

Millers Dale Car Park

Loved this Peak District walk? Then you might enjoy the 'Stanshope - Milldale - Dovedale &  Back' walk too!

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