Mountain Hare Photography Experience
National Experience of the Year Bronze Award, VisitEngland
A fantastic and unique photography and nature experience which takes you on a walk to one of the wildest parts of the Peak District National Park. Here your guide will assist you to take great photographs and you will have plenty of time to photograph and observe the mountain hares in their natural habitat. You will also have the opportunity to learn about the ecology and restoration of these amazing bog and moorland habitats.
Photograph and observe rare mountain hares
Learn about this unique area’s nature and conservation with your guide
Private tour tailored specifically to you
5 to 8 hour experience (depending on your timing preferences)
Photograph rare Mountain Hares in the Peak District National Park
The highest points of the Peak District are the only places in England where you can still find mountain hares. During winter (November to April), when they change to their white winter coats, is a great time to view and photograph mountain hares in their natural habitat. Due to the cold at this time of year many people prefer to view them during the warmer months when conditions are easier and more comfortable. May, June and October as some of my favourite times so view them. They can be seen all year round but the longer grass from July to September makes getting those great shots a little more difficult.
Most people will never see them when walking in the hills but I have a 100% record of seeing them on these trips. The day will be planned specifically for you and will provide plenty of time to photograph, or just to watch these amazing animals. It goes without saying that it's worth taking along a camera with a long lens or zoom and binoculars if you have them.
To get to the optimum locations involves a walk of around 3-4 miles in each direction. I will navigate you across the complex moorland terrain to some of the best locations to see and photograph mountain hares in their natural habitat. There will also be the chance of seeing short eared owls, golden plover, red grouse, kestrels and other wildlife on these trips as well as learning about the ecology and restoration of these amazing bog and moorland habitats.
See below for further trip details
There are a number of different locations and routes to choose between. The grades below represent the shorter route.
Grade: Moderate (suitable for people with a reasonable degree of fitness)
Total Length: 12km/7miles
Total Height Gain: 250m/800ft
The walk is mostly on a mixture of good tracks and smaller footpaths which are quite rough in places and includes a few gradual hills. Some of the path is paved and tends to be a little slippy when wet. At any time of year there are likely to be some muddy sections, especially once we start to head away from the Pennine Way across the moors. The terrain here becomes rough with no paths once we get to the hare locations. The location is high and exposed to the weather, especially in winter. In the event of adverse weather (e.g. gales, widespread snow or ice) we would contact you to discuss options including rescheduling or refunding. If you'd like to find out more about the trips suitability please contact us.
Recommended Equipment & Clothing
Appropriate walking clothing to keep you warm on the day (no jeans as they can be cold & uncomfortable if wet). Thermal base layers are recommended in winter.
Spare warm layers & insulated jacket if possible (it can be very cold whilst watching the hares)
Walking boots (accessing the hares involves crossing some rough and uneven ground so waterproof boots that go above the ankle providing good ankle support and keeping your feet dry, are strongly recommended rather than low cut walking/trail shoes on most walks. Boots will keep your feet drier than walking shoes in boggy areas). No Trainers.
A spare pair of walking socks or waterproof socks can be useful in case your feet get wet.
Warm hat and gloves (if the forecast is wet, a spare pair is also recommended)
Food, drink and snacks for the day. We will stop for food whilst out on the hill. A hot flask is a good idea in winter.
Personal first aid kit (for minor cuts, blisters, sun cream, pain relief and any personal medication).
Rucksack with waterproof liner/bag.
Photography gear (DSLR or other camera, ideally 300mm or 500mm lens/zoom or longer)
Hand sanitiser and face covering recommended. A face mask/covering does not generally need to be worn, however whilst virus levels remain high it would be recommended in emergency situations to help protect people whilst providing first aid or assistance.
Optional additions: head torch in autumn/winter, camera, binoculars, gaiters and/or walking poles if you use them.
Any questions please email email@example.com or call me on 07928677626
Mountain Hares through the seasons
Mountain Hares are the UK's population of Arctic Hares and unlike brown hares and rabbits they are actually native to the UK. Rabbits and brown hares are thought to have been introduced around the roman times. What makes mountain hares particularly special is that they have a white coat in winter. Their winter coat doesn't contain the pigment that normally fills the centre of each strand of hair and is therefore hollow in winter and this helps to keep them warm as well as better camouflaged when it snows.
Winter - a time for staying warm
Winter coat time
Early Spring - often a time for snow showers
Spring is a particularly beautiful time to see them as their coats change
Summer - a time for sunbathing on the patches of bare peat.
Summer - a young hair enjoying the sun
Early Autumn - having a good scratch
Late Autumn in the afternoon sun