Hope Win Hill Circuit – A Great Peak District Walk
As part of the training for a forthcoming expedition to climb Mt Kilimanjaro in Tanzania, Africa it was decided to make the short drive to the Peak District. The idea was to do some moderate climbing on the Hope Win Hill Circuit in the fine weather we were having.
Starting in the delightful village of Hope we took the Edale Road and turned right to pass under the railway line and up through Twitchill Farm. This was the beginning of the 300 metre climb up to Win Hill. Win Hill stands at a height of 463 metres/1,519 ft. There are splendid views on this Hope Win Hill circuit. This is especially so from Win Hill overlooking the Ladybower and Derwent Reservoirs, Hollins Cross, Lose Hill and the Hope Valley.
There is a myth that Win Hill gets its name from the Battle of Win Hill and Lose Hill in 626. There is no record of any battle supposedly fought between Prince Cwichelm and his father, King Cynegils of Wessex, possibly with the aid of King Penda of Mercia.
Derwent Reservoir, due to its similarity to the German dams, was used during the Second World War by pilots of the 617 Squadron. They were practising low-level flights for the forthcoming ‘Operation Chastise’ raids on the Möhne, Eder and Sorpe dams in Germany with Barnes Wallis’s ‘bouncing bomb’. There is a commemorative plaque to the ‘Dam Busters’ of 617 Squadron on the Derwent dam.
From Win Hill the route goes east into Winhill Plantation then south heading towards Thornhill Carrs. Then it continues west and south west down through farmland to Aston Lane. A right turn on the lane goes past Aston Hall and Birchfield Park to pass under the railway line at Killhill Bridge. Finally it reaches Edale Road and goes back to the starting point.
The Peak District has some great walks, this Hope Win Hill circuit walk is 4.2 miles long and took 1 hour 35 minutes.