Manifold Valley Peak District Camping Weekend

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Sep 06

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Easy camping but a moderately long walk of approx. 22km (13 miles) is planned, depending on the group.

Come and join us for a weekend of simple camping in the South West of the Peak District. Big Hillsdale Farm is situated in between the two lovely villages of Butterton and Grindon, over looking the Manifold Valley. It is a small family run campsite alongside a working farm. 

The limestone rock that forms the geology of this area is the fossilised remains of sea creatures that lived in a shallow tropical sea over the area during the Carboniferous period, about 350 million years ago. During the two ice ages, the limestone rock (known as reef limestone) was cut into craggy shapes by glacial meltwater, and dry caves such as Thor's cave and Dove Holes were eventually formed.

The jumble of  interlocking hills that tumble over one other to form the Manifold Valley is considered one of England's great natural wonders.

Campsite Facilities

A basic campsite providing clean toilets, shower and washing up area.

For more information on the campsite facilities, please review the "What to Bring" section below.

Campervans, motorhomes and caravans:  

Cannot be located on the tent camping field and will need to be pitched on a separate hard standing area. To enquire about availability, contact the OutdoorLads office on There will be an additional cost involved. 

Four-legged friends

Well behaved dogs are allowed as long as they are kept on a lead and are looked after by their owners at all times. A  fee is payable for each dog on arrival directly to the campsite. 

Day Walk Options

Several different walk options are available to us, with the possibility of exploring the Manifold Valley, Dove Dale, or both! Which we decide to explore will be decided nearer the time, or if sufficient leaders are available, we may be able to offer both options. 

Manifold Valley and Dove Dale

An excellent walk would take us across along the Manifold Trail, which follows the route of the disused Leek and Manifold Light Railway, through the Manifold and Hamps Valleys.

A relatively easy, though long-ish walk of 22km (13.5 miles) would take us initially along the Manifold Valley and up to Thor's Cave.

From there across through Wetton and down into Dove Dale, before returning via Ilam and the Manifold Way along the River Hamps. This walk can be shortened somewhat if need be.

We would need to car-share and drive a short distance down to the Manifold River to shave about 5km off the total walk (and to avoid a hard up-hill slog at the end). We may nip up to Wetton after the walk for a pint.

Manifold Valley

A shorter option (14km / 9 miles) is to walk from the campsite down into and along the Manifold Valley, including a short visit up to Thor's Cave and past Beeston Tor, before returning across fields to the campsite.

Manifold Valley Pixabay Free Use
Thor's Cave Pixabay Free Use
Big Hillsdale Campsite ODL
Manifold Valley Pixabay Free Use
Thor's Cave Pixabay Free Use
Big Hillsdale Campsite ODL


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