Shining Tor and Windgather Rocks from Lamaload

This walk visits the highest point in Cheshire, Shining Tor, and continues to Windgather Rocks, which are popular with climbers. Starting from Lamaload, this route offers varied content and some great views in the high moors of Cheshire and parts of Staffordshire.

Technical sheet
No. 292959
A Rainow walk posted on 04/07/16 by Walking Britain. Update : 08/09/16
Calculated time Calculated time: 4h30[?]
Distance Distance : 7.67mi
Vertical gain Vertical gain : 1165ft
Vertical drop Vertical drop : 1168ft
Highest point Highest point : 1821ft
Lowest point Lowest point : 1004ft
Average Difficulty : Average
Back to starting point Back to starting point : Yes
Walking Walking
Area Area : Peak District
Location Location : Rainow
Starting point Starting point : N 53.274697° / W 2.0373°
Download : -


(D/A) Exit the car park and turn right along the lane in the direction of the A537. Where the lane bends right go through the gate on the left along a track signed to Shining Tor. This track/path climbs steadily and where it forks keep on the right-hand path, which climbs more steeply across rough pasture.

(1) Stay with this path as it swings south to follow a wall on your right. The path descends gently and turns east before climbing again to reach the wall and the summit of Shining Tor. The view in all directions is good with many landmarks in evident. To the south you can see the Roaches and Shutlingsloe, whilst away to the northeast Mam Tor and Kinder Scout are in view. After taking in the view head north along the wall, which is to your left over the next lengthy section of ridge to Pym Chair. The ridge marks the boundary between Cheshire and Derbyshire and after a wet spell can be rather boggy so be prepared for a little bog trotting!

(2) Reaching the road at Pym Chair, turn right for a short way before following the continuation of the ridge path northwards to Windgather Rocks. (Note - if you are short of time or energy then you may omit the next section and instead turn left along the road and follow the instructions further down the page). The path parallels the road and is often wet in which case it is better to walk on the road. Windgather Rocks offer a choice nursery routes and you will often see climbers enjoying the challenge. The grassy top also provides a pleasant place to stop for a break.

(3) The route now retraces the route for some way and it is probably easier to use the road following it as far as a T-junction where you turn right. This lane descends to Jenkin Chapel with its interesting history and if you have time allow a few minutes here to investigate this rather utilitarian structure. Turn left at Jenkin Chapel and follow the lane back to the start(D/A).

Waypoints :
D/A : mi 0 - alt. 1106ft - Car park
1 : mi 0.52 - alt. 1224ft - Keep on the right-hand path
2 : mi 3.71 - alt. 1532ft - Turn right
3 : mi 4.84 - alt. 1306ft - Retrace the route
D/A : mi 7.67 - alt. 1102ft

Useful Information

This route starts with a climb to the highest point in Cheshire and continues with a good ridge walk. It concludes with a section along the lanes with the opportunity to visit one of the more interesting churches in the area. The start is the small car park at Lamaload Reservoir (grid ref SJ975753). This can be reached down a lane from the A537 Buxton to Macclesfield road about 2 miles west of the "Cat & Fiddle". Please note that the car park at Lamaload reservoir, despite being an amenity provided by the National Park, is only available to the general public from 7th November to 30th April. At other times it is the exclusive preserve of an angling club, who keep the barrier locked. Some parking is available at the roadside.

Visorando and this author cannot be held responsible in the case of accidents or problems occuring on this walk.

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