Walk along the most scenic sections of Hadrian’s Wall

Our Sycamore Gap and Crag Lough walk is suitable for families, along some of the most scenic sections of Hadrian’s Wall.

The terrain features footpaths and tracks, some short, sharp ascents, and may be muddy in places. You will need sturdy footwear and waterproofs. The walk can be started at either The Sill: National Landscape Discovery Centre or Steel Rigg Car Park.

Please keep dogs on a lead and follow the Countryside Code.

Parking charges at The Sill or Steel Rigg apply, more information can be found here.

The logo for the Hadrian's Wall 1900 festival

Download the PDF guide to Steel Rigg and Crag Lough Walk

Download Route

Walk overview

Walk difficulty
Moderate
Walk distance
4 miles / 6.4km
Walk duration
2 hours
Location
Hadrian's Wall
Recommended OS Map
OS Explorer OL 43 1:25000 Hadrian’s Wall
Accessible
No
Dog friendly
No

Step by step route

A - Starting from outside The Sill

Facing the main entrance follow the path around the right-hand side of the building to the wicket gate by the main road. Cross the road and go through the gate into the small woodland. Go out the next gate and turn left, heading up the footpath that runs alongside the country road.

B - At the end of the footpath

At the end of the footpath cross the road and walk past Peel Cottage, then go through the gate signed ‘Hadrian’s Wall’. Take the left hand path heading uphill. Go through the gate that cuts through Hadrian’s Wall and turn right down the flagged path.

Starting from Steel Rigg Car Park

Near the ticket machine go through the gate signed ‘Hadrian’s Wall’. Head straight on, when you meet Hadrian’s Wall turn left through the gate

C - Climb up the steep stone steps

Climb up the steep stone steps to the top of Peel Crags. Keep to the path as it runs alongside Hadrian’s Wall. Go down the stone steps to Milecastle 39 and continue on, up the path, then down the stone steps to the tree at Sycamore Gap.

D - Up to Highshield Crags

You can return to The Sill or Steel Rigg Car Park from here, by walking back the way you came. OR, continue along the path, up to Highshield Crags where you look down to Crag Lough, a glacial lake. Take care, steep drops here. Follow the path down through the wood and out the gate. Keep straight ahead, along the path, and out the gate.

E - Cross the farm track

Cross the farm track and go through the gate, signed ‘National Trails / Housesteads’. Continue following the footpath up.

F - Turn left by Hotbank Farm

By Hotbank Farm turn left and cross over the stone step stile. Walk across the farmyard, keeping the farm buildings on your left. Go through the gate and up the track to the brow of the hill to a ladder stile by a gate. Cross over the stile.

G - Turn immediately left

Turn immediately left and go over the stile by the footpath sign. Head straight ahead across the field, and over the stile. Follow the signed path across another field, The path curves to the right and heads up to a wall. Cross the stile over the wall.

H - Head straight ahead

Head straight ahead, keeping the two barns and enclosure on your right. Continue straight on with the stone wall on your right. Cross the stile over a wall, and keep straight on, past another barn and a woodland.

I - The path becomes a stone track

The path becomes a stone track, follow this all the way to the gate by the road. Go throught the gate and turn left up the road to Steel Rigg Car Park. To return to The Sill continue on down the road.

Walk route

Getting there

Starting Point: Steel Rigg Car Park

From the West

Follow the B6318 (Military Road) from Greenhead to the cross-roads with The Sill: National Landscape Discovery Centre. Turn right signposted ‘Steel Rigg’.

From the East

Follow the B6318 (Military Road) west to the cross-roads with The Sill: National Landscape Discovery Centre. Turn right signposted ‘Steel Rigg’.

Bus

The Hadrian’s Wall bus AD122 stops at The Sill: National Landscape Discovery Centre on the B6318 (Military Road). Walk up the narrow road signed ‘Steel Rigg’ to start the walk. Visit the Traveline website for further details.