We’re very lucky in our area to have the Pennines right on our doorstep. Only a short ride away by car or train is wild countryside with grand hills and even the odd mountain. Below, you’ll find five of the best mountain and hill walks near Manchester that will let you conquer some of the biggest peaks. Make sure to follow the links and do the research before you go – and be sure to take a map and wear appropriate clothing and footwear. Let’s set off!

Kinder Scout

This mountain plateau offers some of the most rewarding, if challenging, walks in the North. At over 2000 feet, the summit is the highest point in the Peak District and offers spectacular views. Starting from Edale train station, you can climb via a rocky clough, or scramble up a stepped path called Jacob’s Ladder. From nearby Hayfield, there’s a picturesque route to Kinder Downfall – the tallest waterfall in the National Park.

Edale, Hope Valley, S33 7ZP
Pendle Hill

For most people, this Lancashire landmark is associated with the Pendle Witches – but beyond this Halloween-y setting, it’s well known for its hiking. This five mile circular trek will take you to the summit and back in around two and a half hours. A gentle start leads up to a bracken-covered moorland and when the climbing begins in earnest, the views get better with every step. From the top, Blackpool Tower can be seen on a clear day.

Pendle Hill, Nelson, BB9 6LG
Mam Tor

A six-and-a-half mile trek, Mam Tor is recognised as one of the best ridge walks in the country. Starting at the village of Castleton in Derbyshire, it passes the famous show caverns. Then it’s a steep climb up the Tor, also known as the Shivering Mountain. From there, make your way along the exposed ridge which is known for its stunning landscape. The walk can be extended by taking a stroll by the river on the way back.

Castleton, Hope Valley, S33 8WN
Bleaklow

Located in a less well-trodden part of the Peaks, this mountain hike is over nine miles long and could take up to six and a half hours. The varied trail includes a paved section of the Pennine Way and an old Roman road – but beware: there are also peaty footpaths which can get rather boggy. Points of interest include the Bleaklow Bomber – remains of an American plane which crashed on the hill in 1948.

Bleaklow, Glossop, SK13 7EJ
Shutlingsloe

Less famous than the others on this list, Shutlingsloe is known as the Matterhorn of Cheshire, and is a landmark in the county. The trail begins in the heart of Macclesfield Forest, so look out for red deer, badgers, and foxes. Leaving the shelter of the trees, the well paved route climbs steadily to the summit, which is a lofty 1600 feet. Considered to be a challenging hike, it’ll take around three to four hours.

Macclesfield Forest, Macclesfield, SK11 0AR
Tue 13 Oct
Words:
A. James Simpkin
Published on:
Tue 13 Oct 2020