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Nelson's Monument, Three Ships, and Eagle Stone

MODERATE 9 reviews
#21 of 224 trails in

Nelson's Monument, Three Ships, and Eagle Stone is a 7.4 kilometer loop trail located near Bakewell, Derbyshire, England that features beautiful wild flowers and is rated as moderate. The trail is primarily used for hiking, walking, nature trips, and bird watching.

7.4 km
278 m

kid friendly


nature trips


bird watching



wild flowers


A relatively easy walk with relatively little steep uphill involved but one that still delivers excellent views, visits three gritstone edges and a good tour of several Peak District features - Nelson's Monument, the Three Ships and Eagle Stone. Birchen Edge is another gem of a gritstone edge, but I admit I have an affection for all of them and will wax lyrical about each and every part. Birchen Edge stands above the Robin Hood public house on the A619 Baslow to Chesterfield road. Gardom's Edge is a more subtle structure surrounded in woodland below Birchen Edge and towards Baslow. The views from Birchen Edge across the Derwent Valley are wide and far. The rewards far exceed the effort needed to see them as the route up Birchen Edge is a stroll and involves little ascent, so a good one for those who want a great view with little effort! The rock formation along the top known as the "Three Ships" after their names carved onto them are good for scrambling or climbing. These three pieces of exposed and weathered gritstone are named after three ships in Lord Nelson's fleet - "Royal Soverin" (yes, that's how it is carved in the rock), "Defiant" and "Victory". There's also Nelson's Monument which was erected on the top of Birchen Edge to commemorate the great Admiral after his death in 1805. It should be noted that this monument was erected decades before the column in London's Trafalgar Square! It will come as no surprise that many of the climbing routes along Birchen Edge have related names - Nautical Crack, Mast Gulley, Half Nelson, Trafalgar Wall and so on. On Baslow Edge there is Wellington's Monument, dedicated to the Duke of Wellington and his victory at the Battle of Waterloo in 1815. This was erected by E.M. Wrench in 1866 who wanted to provide some balance with Nelson's Monument on the nearby Birchen Edge. Eagle Stone is a well weathered block of gritstone standing towards the eastern end of Baslow Edge. This appears to be steeped in local folklore, the most oft quoted example being that local men had to climb this to demonstrate their prowess before they could be eligible to marry.

Just Brilliant! Views are amazing

8 months ago

Fantastic walk, although the 180 degree turn caught us out for a moment or two, but once we were back on track, all was well. It's the first walk that I have awarded 5*! The views are magnificent and the hospitality at the end in The Robin Hood is excellent.

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