About the Author
Dennis Kelsall is an expert outdoor writer and regular Pathfinder author with a deep knowledge of the British countryside.
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Walk One Stanton Moor
Start Birchover, by The Druid Inn
Distance 3 miles (4.8km)
Heigh gain 470 feet (145m)
Approx Time 1.5 hours
Parking Roadside parking in Lower Village or parking area opposite Birchover Quarry on Birchover Road
Route terrain Heath and field paths
Stanton Moor, a finger of gritstone amid limestone country, rises to 1,060 feet (323m) and is an open, breezy, heather-cld moorland giving glorious views across the valley of the Derwent. Its two chief characteristics, which form the main features of this short walk, are the curious rock formations and the vast number of prehistoric remains - burial chambers, standing stones, circles and fortifications - that litter the moor.
Birchover is a small village strung out along the hill that climbs to Stanton Moor. At its lower end, behind The Druid Inn, a path leads to the Rowtor Rocks, a gritstone outcrop worth exploring after the walk, both for its extensive views and its maze of caves and passages, where carved steps lead to staggered terraces. Many of these were the work of Thomas Eyre, an eccentric 18th-century clergyman, who also built, just beneath the rocks, the tiny village church.