GPS Cycle and Walking Routes

Peak District Aircraft Wrecks Walk

10 miles (16.5 km)

This walk climbs to the crash site of the USAFBoeingRB-29A Superfortress at Higher Shelf Stones, Bleaklow.
The aircraft crashed on the 3rd November 1948, whilst en route from Scampton to Burtonwood with all 13 crew members killed. Much of the wreckage and a memorial to those who lost their lives can be viewed on Shelf Moor, just to the east of Glossop.
It's fairly challenging 5 mile walk from the town to the site, reaching a height of over 2000ft on the elevated moor.
This walk starts from Glossop train station but you could also start from the parking area on the A57 Snake Pass road, just to the south of the moor. There's also the option of starting from the Birchin Clough car park in Lady Clough Woods as shown in the video below.
From the train station you head north east through the town before turning east to follow the Doctor's Gate Roman Road to Crooked Clough. Here you turn left to follow footpaths up to Higher Shelf Stones where you can see the remains of the Superfortress, part of the 16th Photographic Reconnaissance Squadron. You can continue along the path to Lower Shelf Stones where you will find more interesting rock formations and incredible views over the surrounding hills of the area.
After exploring the site the route descends back into Glossop on the same paths.
The site is located just to the south of Bleaklow which is a great place to extend your walk. You can reach the hill summit by using a section of the Pennine Way which runs just to the east of Higher Shelf Stones.

Peak District Aircraft Wrecks Walk OS Map - Mobile GPS OS Map with Location tracking

Peak District Aircraft Wrecks Walk Open Street Map - Mobile GPS Map with Location tracking

Further Information and Other Local Ideas

A few miles to the north east you can try the Middle Black Clough Waterfall Walk. The area is a bit of a hidden gem with walks along the River Etherow to some beautiful waterfalls and wonderful rock formations. The walk starts from the car park at the eastern end of Woodhead Reservoir.
For more walking ideas in the area see the Peak District Walks page.

Cycle Routes and Walking Routes Nearby


Footbridge over Shelf Brook - - 941552

Footbridge over Shelf Brook

Doctor's Gate path towards Gathering Hill - - 944638

Doctor's Gate path towards Gathering Hill

B29 Engines - - 1169972

B29 Engines. One of the gun turrets is on display at the air museum inNewark-on-Trent,Nottinghamshire.

Remains of the Superfortress - - 758476

Remains of the Superfortress. The aircraft had taken part in theBerlin airliftduring 1948. It was also flown in July 1946 by the 509th Composite Group duringOperation Crossroadsto photographnuclear testing at Bikini Atoll. When it crashed it was on a routine daytime flight with two other aircraft, leavingRAF ScamptonnearLincoln and heading to the US Air Force base atBurtonwoodnearWarrington.

Higher Shelf Stones - - 157314

Higher Shelf Stones

Lower Shelf Stones - - 1483322

Lower Shelf Stones

Remembrance - - 1169958

Remembrance. In 1988, a memorial was erected at the site by servicemen fromRAF Finningley, with a plaque in memory of those who died in the crash.

Engine from the crashed Superfortress - - 10574

Engine from the crashed Superfortress. The aircraft was carrying the $7,400 wages for the Burtonwood airbase. The money survived the fire and was recovered at the crash site by the American Military Police


GPS Files

GPX File

Peak District Aircraft Wrecks Walk.gpx (On Desktop:Right Click>'Save As. On Ipad/Iphone:Click and hold>Share>Save to Files')

Memory Map Route

Peak District Aircraft Wrecks Walk.mmo (On Desktop:Right Click>'Save As. On Ipad/Iphone:Click and hold >Share>Save to Files)