High Tor, Matlock Bath

Walk 26: Cromford to Matlock Bath via Bonsall

A varied hike of woods, quarries, mines, and nods to the industrial past of Richard Arkwright’s legacy.

Starting at Cromford, you head out through woods past Ball Eye Quarry, drop-down into the ancient village of Bonsal, then take the path north to Jug Holes cave. From Jug Holes, you continue southeast past Masson Lees Quarry, past the Heights of Abraham, with the final leg taking you back to Cromford.

If you find this guide useful, please consider buying us a coffee to help with running costs of the site.


  • Distance: 6 miles
  • Difficulty: Moderate
  • Minimum Duration: 3 hrs
  • Refreshments: PubCafe
  • Route: Download .gpx file
  • Start Grid Ref: SK 29239 57054

Parking Location

Free parking is available on Water Lane, Cromford, DE4 3QH. Please be respectful when parking as it is a partly residential area.

Weather Forecast

Derbyshire, UK



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Safety First

Please do not rely on this walking guide to solely navigate a hike. Always take a map and compass with you and make sure know how to use them. Hiking is generally safe, but there are always potential risks. Use common sense, plan your route beforehand and make a reasonable judgment at all times.


  1. From Water Lane, head up to the western entrance of Scarthin Lane. Head up Scarthin Lane for about 60 meters looking out for the cobbled path on the left, just past the Basketware shop.
  2. Take the cobbled path as it ascends through woods for about 500 meters until meeting the edge of Ball Eye quarry. Follow the path as it continues along the right side of the quarry. The path opens out into fields and eventually drops down into the village of Bonsall.
  3. On entering Bonsall, continue along Church Street for about 600 meters until meeting the Market Cross.
  4. Turn right and head up the path just past the maps of Bonall – this stretch is part of the Matlock Limestone Way section.
  5. Continue on the path as it twists and turns for about 600 meters until it eventually meets Pounder Lane. Turn right and continue on Pounder Lane until meeting the Nailor Lane.
  6. Turn right and walk 150 meters down the lane. Take the track on the right as Nailor Lane turns to Salter Lane.
  7. Continue on the path, crossing two stiles, for 500 meters. The path leads to Masson Lees quarry.
  8. Just before reaching the quarry, take the path on the left as it descends down to another track.
  9. Turn right and follow the track to the Heights of Abraham.
  10. At the upper entrance to the Heights of Abraham, take the path on the right which continues through the woodland for about 500 meters.
  11. Upon meeting the edge of the woodland, turn sharp left and descend down towards the tops of Matlock Bath.
  12. Turn right at Upperwood Road and continue for 650 meters. The road eventually becomes a path.
  13. Continue straight following the path. You will eventually meet the initial path that leads to Ball Eye quarry. Turn left and retrace your steps back to the start of the walk.

Questions or comment about this route? Leave them in the comments section below.

1 Comment

  1. Lee1st February 2021


    Was that Devonshire mine you went in? And have you heard of anywhere locally called Maze mine or Queens Chamber?



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