Below you will find the step-by-step guide for one of the many routes around the Chatsworth ground. This one takes in woodland, moorland, a lake, waterfall, paths, tracks, country lanes and grassy fields. This route can be viewed for free on the Ordnance Survey site HERE.
Starting at village of Beely, parking can be limited, you head straight over the road, through the gate and across the flat field towards a narrow bridge over the river Derwent.
From here hug what little pavement there is for about 30m before reaching the embankment leading up to Calton Lees car park/ Chatsworth Garden Centre.
Take the road just above the garden centre and follow it up for a while, steadily steepening until the road changes to a track.
At the ‘island’ carry straight on up the track until the routes zig-zags below a couple of holiday cottages. Going through the courtyard of the cottages the track continues as a path.
If you head up at the right time of year you can see a sea of blue bells.
Once you enter the open again keep heading straight (don’t take the sharp left) keeping the dry stone wall on your right. You will shortly reach the top of the hill and be rewarded with great views over where you have just walked.
Go through the gate at the end of the field and walk through the woods until you reach a large gate with a stile in the wall. Head over this and you will be able to see the Chatsworth estate proper, maybe some deer as well if you are lucky.
Walk down the hill towards the picturesque village of Edensor. Just before you get to the village follow the dike around on your right and follow the obvious path over the road and up to the main path.
From here keep going towards the House itself and over Paine Bridge. Walk up the slope either cutting through the stables or going around toward the adventure playground (feel free to take a stop here if you have kids). Take the path on the right or follow the road as they meet up again after around 70m. Keep and eye of the left as the next path is here.
The only part of the day that is going to make you huff and puff.
The path, which is sign posted, starts flat but you will quickly discover that it turns into a slippery, stone staircase that goes all the way to the top of the hill and the Hunting Tower.
The views from here a magnificent in any weather with benches to take a well deserved snack and drink.
From the Hunting tower you will need to go left behind the bunk houses and follow the road through the woods until you reach open field.
Carry on along the field until you reach a stile going over the wall you have had on your right.
Keep following this path as it narrows and you eventually start walking over the top of Chatsworth Edge. Not very popular with climbers these days and the top can be slippy in wet weather. If you have children with you make sure they don’t get too close to the edge.
At the bottom of the edge you will see two paths. One heads to the road from where you can walk to to the Robin Hood pub and/or to Birchen Edge. The second path, which is less well defined, heads along the steep slope above the stream with the road on the other side. Once again this can be slippery when wet.
You will end up meeting the main track along Gibbet Moor. When you turn around the path your were on this actually quite obvious so doing this route in reverse can be easier. Follow this track all the way up to the wall where your take a sharp left (your only real option)
Hobs Hurst House, an ancient burial ground, unique in that it is rectangular and not round. As the woods disappear on your right you hit this ancient monument and the path that you need to follow.
The path curves round with the woods and you keep following until the woods disappear again. From here you can carry on straight and join Beely Moor or you can take the diagonal and join the moor a little further on.
Either way you head South and reach a stile at the end of the path.
Immediately over the road from moor is a stile into the woodland. You start heading up left but as soon as possible turn right and down into the woods proper.
Follow any path you like here as long as you are still heading downwards. All go to Beely and join a farmers track at some point. As a general rule, try to keep the wall in sight on your right.
Once out of the woods you are back in Beely and just need to follow the road until you reach where you have parked. Having a pint in the pub if you feel like it.
The route is 17km and should take 4 hours for a reasonably fit person. The Chatsworth grounds offer many variations of this route, though almost all are shorter.