A 90 mile walk across the glorious high country of the Yorkshire Dales
A Dales High Way Walk: a 90 mile walk across the glorious high country of the Yorkshire Dales

A Dales High Way

News en route

Hen Harrier breeding success


It has been the best year for hen harrier breeding in England since Natural England’s hen harrier recovery project was established in 2002, with 60 chicks fledged from 19 nests across Northumberland, the Yorkshire Dales, Cumbria and Lancashire in early summer 2020.

Natural England has attached satellite tags to 23 of these birds.

The success has been down to several factors including high numbers of voles which are a key food source, good weather, and strong partnership working.

Hen harriers were once found across upland and lowland Britain, however after 1830 it became an exceptionally rare breeding bird in England due to raptor persecution, which was then made illegal in 1954. The hen harrier is now one of England’s rarest birds of prey.

Tony Juniper, Chairman of Natural England, said: “Despite the great progress there is though no cause for complacency. Too many birds still go missing in unexplained circumstances and I urge anyone who is still engaged in the persecution of these magnificent creatures to cease at once. Hen harriers remain critically endangered in England and there is a long way to go before the population returns to what it should be.”

Amanda Anderson, Director of the Moorland Association, said: “Twelve of the nests reported today are on land managed for grouse shooting and this reflects a genuine commitment from moor owners and managers to work with others and help rebuild the harrier population.”

This year’s success means that 141 hen harrier chicks have fledged over the past three years alone.

See Natural England here. See our previous story here.

12 Sept 2020

Last chance for Staycation Express

Staycation Express.  (Image: Rail Charter Services Ltd.)

There's still a fortnight to enjoy a first class luxury rail journey along the Settle-Carlisle line.

Whilst restrictions on rail travel were beginning to ease, a new tourist luxury daily charter service began to run on the Settle to Carlisle line.

With three daily return journeys between Skipton and Appleby, stopping at Settle only, the service began on July 20th and will finish on September 12th.

The train is made up of First-Class carriages offering spacious, well-padded seats and large windows from which passengers can view the stunning scenery. Tickets cost £39 per couple one-way.

The charter train service consists of four Mark 3 First-Class coaches (FOs) and one Mark 2 compartment brake vehicle (BFK), the latter not open for public use.  The train is hauled by two class 47 locomotives, one at either end.  The train will be operated by Locomotive Services Ltd (TOC) and promoted through Rail Charter Services Ltd and The Settle Carlisle Railway Development Company Ltd.

All services have stringent social distancing measures in place to ensure the best safety for both customers and staff on board.  With online pre-booking, individual seating areas divided by Perspex screens, and a socially divided one-way boarding and alighting system - passengers are made to feel at ease from the beginning of their journey. 

It's also a great way to enjoy the return journey for those walkers completing A Dales High Way in the next 2 weeks!

See more about the Staycation Express here.

1 Sept 2020

Glovershaw Beck path re-opens

Glovershaw Beck path repairs

The path alongside Glovershaw Beck, near the start of A Dales High Way, has been repaired using an ingenious technique and is open once again.

There was a real problem facing Bradford Council's countryside team when the path was washed away for the second time in three years following Storm Ciara in February. The steep beckside wall was scoured away by floodwater, leaving a precarious thin ledge for walkers. The council had no option but to close the path until a solution could be found.

With the steep banking clearly susceptible to further erosion, and the landowner reluctant to allow continued encroachment into their field, a really novel solution was required.

Contractors from midlands-based Geogrow Ltd. were called to help instal a deep  "green" revetment - a "Vegetated Wall System" called Rootlok - to support the path.

Rootlok is described as "a soft engineered system that is a competitive alternative to concrete, gabion and other hard revetment systems that do little to benefit the natural environment."

Permable geotextile bags filled with gravel form the lower layers, with bags containing a seeded mixture of soils, compost and sands forming the upper layers. The bags are bound together and back filled to form a stable revetment that will grass-over in time.

Further stone support has been added to the upstream side.

Bradford Countryside officer Richard Perham said "We have never used it before, but I think we will again."

The Bradford countryside team have also worked along the whole section - the path strimmed and cleared, branches trimmed, a fence and gate restored, the wire fence repaired. It's an amazing job.

See previous story here. See the Rootlok system here.

7 August 2020

Accommodation begins to re-open

Eat Out to help Out offers include the Royal Oak in Settle

Much of the accommodation along A Dales High Way is open for business once more, as restrictions due to the Covid-19 pandemic are eased.

But the pattern is patchy in some areas. The Friends of A Dales High Way have been checking to see what the current situation is.

Some pubs remain closed for the foreseeable future, such as both Dent pubs - the Sun Inn and the George & Dragon. Others that remain closed at this time include the Craven Heifer at Stainforth  and the Golden Lion Hotel at Horton-in-Ribblesdale. The Tufton Arms Hotel at Appleby is planning to re-open soon.

Most of the pubs and hotels that are open, along with cafes and restaurants, are offering Eat Out to Help Out discounts, so this month is a good time to visit

Youth Hostels, including those in Malham and Ingleton, are accepting  whole house bookings only at the current time, along with some B&B providers such as Bracken Hall House in Baildon and bunkbarns like Broadrake near Chapel-le-Dale. Sadly the very popular Brownber Hall at Newbiggin-on-Lune has moved to whole-house booking on a permanent basis.

Accommodation that is open may have restricted capacity.

Most campsites have re-opened, but those still closed include Moorgarth at Ingleton.

The Accommodation listing on this website includes all the B&Bs, hotels, pubs and campsites we know about along the route, but you should check with each directly as to their current availability as this is changing all the time.

If you know of any further changes, please let us know.

UPDATE: Aug 20, The George & Dragon in Dent has now re-opened.

See the Accommodation list here. Check for Eat Out to Help Out offers here.

3 August 2020

Works to repair steep footpath from Ingleborough

Descending High lot Ingleborough (photo: wfdbwgua blog)

The descent from the foot of the summit peak of Ingleborough, down to Humphrey Bottom, on the northern flank of the mountain, is a very steep, rocky climb down an engineered path.

The path, known as High Lot, is used by tens of thousands of people a year walking between Chapel le Dale and the top of the mountain – often as part of a Yorkshire Three Peaks route - as well as walkers on A Dales High Way.

High footfall, heavy rainfall, drainage issues and a steep incline has caused the existing stone pitched path, installed in the late 1980s, to slip.

The path will be closed for several months from next week (27th of July 2020) to allow repairs to be undertaken.

An alternative route will be in place. This follows the ridge edge of Simon Fell NE for 3/4 of a mile (just over 1 kilometre), before descending steeply alongside the wall.

During the past month, staff from contractors Terra Firma Environmental Ltd have picked and bagged 160 tonnes of large gritstone blocks from a nearby scree slope.  Later this week the stone will be lifted by helicopter and dropped next to the path in readiness for works to begin.

A total of 172 metres of stone pitching will be removed, with the gritstone blocks then dug deep into the ground to make a durable new 1.5 metre wide pitched path.   Associated drainage and landscaping work will also be undertaken.

Nick Cotton, Member Champion for Recreation Management at the Yorkshire Dales National Park Authority, said:  “High Lot is one of the most well used public paths in one of the finest National Nature Reserves in the country.

“It is important for people to observe the temporary closure of the path.  The High Lot section of path to be repaired is very narrow and there isn’t room for the contractors to work safely with walkers passing by.  I would ask that people walking the Yorkshire Three Peaks look up the alternative route to the summit that we are recommending, and give themselves a bit more time to complete it, as it is a steep way and not easy to use.”

Alternatively, walkers heading for Ribblehead can continue along the ridge edge of Simon fell and Park fell before descending on an easier incline to Ribblehead, as outlined in the Dales High Way Route Guide.

See more details of the temporary diversion here.

21 July 2020

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A Dales High Way

An exhilarating Dales High Way waymark90 miles across the glorious high country of the Yorkshire Dales

Walk this spectacular landscape from Saltaire to Appleby-in-Westmorland

Explore its rich history, geology and culture

Return with a breathtaking train ride along England's most beautiful railway

More than just a walk

Dales High Way Guide Books


"Promoted through a superbly illustrated Companion booklet, rich in local geology, history and wildlife, with detailed OS-based maps in an excellent Route Guide, the Dales High Way is a sure-fire winner for all keen Dales walkers."
- Colin Speakman
Yorkshire Dales Review

David & Bridget walk a Dales High Way
Dales High Way - the film!
Nicola with Certficate & Guestbook at Appleby TIC

Dales High Way Certificate & Guestbook

Don't forget to call in at the Appleby Tourist Information Centre when you finish your walk to sign the Guestbook and collect your Certificate.

Appleby TIC in the Moot Hall

Dales High Way Lapel Badge thumbprint Dales High Way Lapel Badges

Celebrate your Dales High Way walk with this beautiful high quality enamel lapel badge.



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