If it wasn’t signed, you’d miss the entrance to Cavedale in Castleton as, going up between the houses, it looks more like the entrance to someone’s back yard. An information panel explains that you’re entering via a narrow gap in rocks that are part of a fossil reef.
The dale soon opens out into a canyon. The keep of Peveril Castle is perched on top of the cliff on your right. Today the stony path, which gets steeper as the dale narrows ahead, seems more like a water feature after all the rain they’ve had in the Peak District recently.
We climb the path which steadily levels out then we follow a green lane across the plateau to Mam Tor. Passing the Blue John mine, we take the old road, closed due to landslips in 1979, down into the Hope Valley.