Section 1 – 5.2 miles / 8.4 km
Overview: A most attractive section following the young river Derwent. It passes across Ladybower dam, along an old railway line to Bamford, and then follows the river bank all the way to Leadmill Bridge south of Hathersage.
Start from Heatherdene car park on the A6013 just north of Ladybower dam.
Take the path from the far end of the lower tier, past a sign “River Trent 55 Miles”, and down steps to the road.
Cross the road, then over the top of the dam. Turn left down the lane.
After 300 yards, bear right on to the Thornhill Trail which is the old railway line constructed to build the dams. Follow the Trail for 1½ miles to the end.
Turn left, and after 50 yards right on to a field path. Turn right under a railway bridge to reach the main Hope Valley road.
Cross into Shatton Lane, over the bridge over the River Noe, and take the footpath on the left. This soon crosses a small footbridge and climbs to the top of a bank above the River Derwent.
Follow the lovely riverside path for 2½ miles all the way to the B6001 road at Leadmill Bridge.
Turn left over the bridge. Take the tarmac lane on the right for section 2, or continue up the road into Hathersage for public transport.
Buses from Sheffield & Bakewell via Bamford pass the entrance to Heatherdene car park.
There are bus routes from Hathersage to Sheffield, Castleton, Bakewell & Chesterfield.
Train stations at Bamford & Hathersage are on the Sheffield to Manchester Hope Valley line.
The Thornhill Trail is well surfaced & maintained, and ideal for wheelchairs.
There is vehicle access at both ends, and a car park reached by a minor road in the middle.
The rest of the route to Leadmill Bridge is not suitable. Taking a child buggy is possible but would be difficult in places.