The Snake Pass is the name given to the remote, higher reaches of the A57 road where it crosses the Peak District between Manchester and Sheffield in Northern England. More specifically, the name usually refers to the section between the town of Glossop and the Ladybower Reservoir, where the road passes over the Pennines watershed between the moorland plateaux of Kinder Scout and Bleaklow (the highest point is 1,680 feet (510 m) above sea level). The Woodhead Pass (A628) is an alternative road route to the Snake Pass linking Manchester and Sheffield.
Like many other A-roads in the North of England that traverse undulating terrain such as the Peak District or other parts of the Pennines, the road has a poor accident record. In winter, the road is often the first of the available routes between Sheffield and Manchester to be closed due to snow in the area. There are areas where the road surface has very poor skid resistance and a number of bends have adverse camber.
Despite Sheffield and Manchester's being the fifth and ninth largest UK city by population, no motorway directly links both cities. The Manchester to Sheffield motorway was partly built, but linking both cities would have meant constructing numerous tunnels and viaducts across the Peak District at a great cost. Consequently, the scheme was shelved.
Snake Pass is one of only a few road climbs in the UK that are comparable in length and average gradient (approximately 7% for around 3.2 miles (5.1 km) when starting in Glossop) to those used in continental cycle racing. For this reason it has frequently featured in the Tour of Britain along with another nearby favourite, Holme Moss.
Cycling Time Trials sanctioned hill climbs are regularly promoted on this course by local club Glossop Kinder Velo. The course record currently stands at 12 minutes 16 seconds.
Inspiral Carpets filmed their 1990 video for "This Is How It Feels" where the road peaks.
The music track "The Snake" by the Human League, from their 2001 album Secrets, is entirely about the Snake Pass.
The Autechre EP Anvil Vapre features track names deriving from locations around the Snake Pass.