Yorkshire Dales Celebration Way
Map of the route
(The alternatives are shown in red)
Detailed Description of the Walk:
| The 'Yorkshire Dales Celebration Way' is my own creation. This unique Long Distance Footpath is my tribute to this fantastic National Park. At approximately 130 miles long (depending on the various alternatives provided) it is designed to be walked in eight days. It conveniently fits it into a 'one week holiday window' especially suitable to starting and finishing on a Saturday or Sunday. Each stage is designed so as many of this super National Parks attractions are visited. Most of the major hills are scaled, including the 'Three Peaks' and many Dales are visited including Airedale, Wharfedale, Dentdale, Swaledale and Wensleydale. Major natural features like Gordale Scar, Malham Cove, Sulber Nick, Gaping Gill and Aysgarth Falls are all on the route as are historic monuments like Skipton Castle and Castle Bolton. All the walking days are designed to end in some of the Dales most interesting towns or villages. These include Settle, Ingleton, Dent, Hawes, Reeth and Kettlewell. This gives the walker plenty of choices on type of accommodation and what to eat. There are also plenty of stages of the walk where those seeking solitude can find peace and quiet. Quite simply this new long distance path has it all when it comes to exploring this great National Park in a challenging and very healthy way. I hope you take the opportunity to do this fantastic new LDP.
Please note this walk is not easy. The average walking distance is over 16 miles per day and there are lots of days when hills have to be climbed. Day two is particularly challenging as both Penyghent and Ingleborough are crossed. And the next day Whernside has to be faced! The longest day in terms of pure mileage is day 5, Hawes to Reeth and this day starts off with the long haul up Great Shunner Fell. If you are challenged to do this walk then please prepare first by doing a few 'trial' walks in the lead up to doing the walk (I also recommend that you equip yourself with a good bag and most importantly some good hiking boots like here). It will be well worth it and will make the bedding in to the walk the much easier. Get over the first couple of days in good spirits and without blisters then I'm confident you will be ok. The third day is shorter and by the time you reach Dent you will be well set to go on a complete the challenge. Whatever you do, don't rush the walk. There are fantastic moments in every day and even after day one when Gordale Scar, Malham Cove and Attermire Scar are logged in the memory you will be craving for more! For those of you who take on my new challenge, please let me know how you got on by signing the Guestbook.
Day One - Skipton to Settle (19 miles):
The market town of Skipton is known as the 'Gateway to the Dales'. Could there be a more appropriate start to
this unique Yorkshire Dales Long Distance Footpath? The walk begins in the grounds of Skipton Castle and leaves
it's majestic beginning by tracking north and west to Flasby Fell before continuing on to the first main features
of the walk, Janet's Cave and Janet's Foss. Continue on to Gordale Scar. The walk goes up the side of the famous
waterfall then bears west to Malham Cove. From this famous tourist attraction the walk leaves the crowds and heads
over classic limestone country to Langscar Gate and Kirkby Fell. There is still one more major attraction to enjoy
as the walk continues on past Attermire Scar before ending the day with a descent into the super market town of Settle.
Click here for the Day One Route Card
Day Two - Settle to Ingleton (18.4 miles):
The walk leaves Settle and heads north firstly alongside the river Ribble then over fell to the foothills of Penyghent.
This magnificent Dales hill is climbed and then left by tracking east to Hull Pot and then south into Horton in Ribblesdale.
From the village leave by crossing the railway line at the station and climb gently onto the fells and magnificent
limestone outcrops at Sulber Nick. A choice can be made here. Add two miles by tracking south west to Trow Gill and then
north west to Gaping Gill before ascending Ingleborough. Alternatively continue from Sulber Nick directly west to Ingleborough.
From Ingleborough's distinct table top summit head down due west into Ingleton.
Click here for the Day Two Route Card
Day Three - Ingleton to Dent (13 miles):
This shorter day begins by leaving Ingleton and walking north through the beautiful Swilla Glen visiting the delights of Snow Falls,
Pecca Falls and Thornton Force. After this enchanting start there is a stiff climb to the summit of Whernside. The 'Three Peaks'
are completed now as the walk makes its way off Whernside by heading down due west to High Pike and along lanes before making
a descent into the picturesque and fascinating cobbled street village of Dent. This is a classic isolated Dales village to enjoy.
Click here for the Day Three Route Card
Day Four - Dent to Hawes (14.4 miles):
The walk leaves Dent reluctantly by heading east and following the River Dee upstream to Bridge End before joining the Craven Way
to track up onto the eastern fringes of Whernside reaching height at Great Wold. From Great Wold the walk follows the Craven Way
down to Smithy Hill, Blea Moor Station and then the much known and often photographed Ribblehead Viaduct. This is a lovely place
to take a break for the walk continues north and east on a long moorland crossing to Cam End and beyond to Kidhow Gate before
beginning a long descent into the classic Dales town of Hawes.
Click here for the Day Four Route Card
Day Five - Hawes to Reeth (20.7 miles):
The walk begins its longest day by leaving Hawes and visiting one of the largest single drop waterfalls in the
country at Hardraw Force. Relax here for a while as the walk continues from Hardraw to the Pennine Way footpath
up and over Great Shunner Fell. From the top the walk affords magnificent views into Swaledale. The walk drops
into this fantastic dale at Thwaite. The walk continues along the valley to Muker. Then the walk takes a northern
route up the superb Swinner Gill and onto Melbecks Moor. It continues east crossing Gunnerside Gill and follows a
famous track past Old Gang Lead Mines before dropping down to Surrender Bridge. From here it follows Britney Beck
to the fantastic Dales town of Reeth. (An alternative low level route from Muker to Reeth alongside the Swale is available.
This cuts the days walk to 18 miles)
Click here for the Day Five Route Card
Day Six - Reeth to Thoralby (10.7 miles):
The walk allows the participant to recover from the longest day by inviting them to the shortest. But this 13 miles
is a wonderful short day. The walk leaves Reeth by heading south onto moorland before crossing over into Wensleydale.
First port of call is the village of Castle Bolton including a visit to Bolton Castle. After this history lesson the
walk moves on to even older and this time natural highs at Aysgarth Falls. The walk follows the falls upstream from
Lower Force then Middle Force and finally High Force before leaving the river at the village. Then it continues south
and east over lowland to the village of Thoralby.
Click here for the Day Six Route Card
Day Seven - Thoralby to Kettlewell (13.7 miles):
Alternative 1 (high level) - A fell walkers delight is in store today. The walk leaves Thoralby and takes us to West
Burton before heading south west following Walden Beck upstream onto Walden Moor. The moor is ascended until Buckden
Pike is reached. The walk visits the memorial to two RAF flyers who crashed on the moor during World War Two and then
Buckden Pike Trig Point. From the Pike the path continues east to Little Whernside and then tracks south along a ridge
affording super views until Great Whernside is reached. This is the last significant hill of the walk but not the end
of the climbing. From Great Whernside drop down into the picturesque village of Kettlewell and enjoy the last evening
stopover of the walk.
Click here for the Day Seven High Level Route Card
Alternative 2 (low level) - Discover the fells above Bishopdale by heading from Thoralby and then joining the Haw
Lane track. This leads to the Stake Road track that tracks west and then south past Stake Moss and into Upper
Wharfedale near Cray. Follow Buckden Rake to Buckden and then join the Dales Way to follow the River Wharfe
downstream to Kettlewell. This is the best route to choose on an inclement day.
Click here for the Day Seven Low Level Route Card
Day Eight - Kettlewell to Skipton (16.3 miles):
The final day of the walk begins by leaving Kettlewell and climbing up to magnificent limestone pavements
that are to be enjoyed all the way to Grassington. This is part of the Dales Way Footpath. From Grassington
the walk continues on the Dales Way to Linton Bridge. From Linton Bridge the walk heads off to Thorpe an then
onto its final high plateau. This is Embsay Moor. The walk follows the fringe of the moor to Cracoe War
Memorial and then to Rylstone Cross. From the cross the walk continues to Embsay Reservoir and then through
the village before heading towards Skipton Woods. The walk makes it's course through the woods to Skipton
Castle and that is where it all began. Well done, the walk is completed. Another lap?
Click here for the Day Eight Route Card
This site conforms to W3C XHTML 1.0, HTML 4.0 and CSS standards.
Copyright © 2003 - 2013 Walking Englishman. All rights reserved.
This page is built using validated W3C XHTML 1.0 & CSS codes.