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Walking at Hardcastle Crags

A view over a rocky and grassy valley at Hardcastle Crags on a cloudy day
Hardcastle Crags, Yorkshire | © National Trust Images/John Millar

Hardcastle Crags has over 15 miles of footpaths to explore. Grab your walking boots and discover tumbling streams, deep ravines and ragged rocks on a walk at Hardcastle Crags.

Walking at Hardcastle Crags

The valley is criss-crossed with over 15 miles of footpaths, just waiting to be discovered.

From family-friendly walks in the woodland to challenging hikes at the top of the valley, there are plenty of adventures to be had on a visit to Hardcastle Crags.

Top tip: Take a photo of the map in the welcome hut to use as you head out on the various trails through the Yorkshire countryside.

Waymarked routes

Our most popular walking routes are waymarked with coloured arrows, to help you navigate your way through the woodland.

Whether you're looking for a route to the Weaving Shed Cafe, or want to explore the wider countryside, you'll find map boards in the car parks.

Take a look at some of our most popular waymarked routes below.

Estate track walk

This one-mile walk will take you from Midgehole car park to Gibson Mill. Take a stroll through the trees and explore the historic mill at the heart of the woodland. This wide, tree-lined route is also wheelchair and pushchair accessible.

Follow the black waymarkers from Midgehole car park to follow this route.

Crags Constitutional

Enjoy a quieter part of the woods on this 2-mile walk, with lots of wildlife to spot along the way. Look out for herons, dippers and wagtails by the water's edge and enjoy the peace and quiet of the woodland.

Follow the green waymarkers from Gibson Mill to follow this route.

The Crags walk

Discover the rocks that give Hardcastle Crags its name on this short but steep ¼-mile climb. At the top, you’ll be rewarded with long-reaching views across the tree canopy, experiencing a bird’s-eye view of the valley.

Follow the estate track up from Gibson Mill and look for the fingerpost on your left, taking you up to The Crags.

Two walkers and a child enjoy the dappled shade of a woodland, surrounded by bluebells
Walkers enjoying the bluebells at Hardcastle Crags, West Yorkshire. | © National Trust Images/John Millar

Railway Trail

Head to the tops of the valley on this 3-mile walk, alongside the stream and dams with great views along the higher slopes. Some of the track follows a former railway, built to transport workers during the valley’s booming industrial age.

Follow the purple waymarkers from Gibson Mill to follow this route.

Mill walk (riverside)

Follow this 1¼-mile walk from Midgehole car park along the winding riverside. See how the river changes and look for wildlife along the way. You can pick up this route from Gibson Mill too.

Follow the red waymarkers from Midgehole lower car park to follow this route.

Mill walk (upper woodland)

This 1¼-mile route takes you through a stand of pines, with beautiful views over Hebden Valley. You can follow this walk from Midgehole car park and Gibson Mill, with different views to enjoy along the way.

Follow the red waymarkers from Midgehole upper car park to follow this route.

Visitors on a bridge at Hardcastle Crags with Gibson Mill in view, West Yorkshire

Discover more at Hardcastle Crags

Find out how to get to Hardcastle Crags, where to park, things to see and do and more.

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