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

£2.2 million for Westmorland Dales

Dales High Way walkers near Sunbiggin Tarn, Ravenstonedale Moor

A £2.27 million National Lottery grant has been awarded to the Westmorland Dales Landscape Partnership scheme, with the aim to reveal, conserve and celebrate the rich geology, wildlife, cultural heritage and spectacular limestone landscapes of the Westmorland Dales.

The area lies to the north of the Howgill Fells in Cumbria, extending over 200 sq km from Maulds Meaburn in the north to Tebay in the south-west and Ravenstonedale in the south-east. The final stretch of A Dales High Way passes right through the heart of this area, which became part of an extended Yorkshire Dales National Park in 2016.

A total of 21 projects will be delivered by a partnership of organisations over a four year period.

There will be opportunities for volunteers to survey the unique heritage and long distance routes of the Westmorland Dales through desk and field survey with the Yorkshire Dales National Park and other partners. Heritage routes include drove roads, green lanes, and public rights of way; long distance routes include the Coast to Coast, Lady Annes’s Way and Pennine Bridleway. Volunteers will assess routes for essential improvements, record features and research each route’s unique history.

This remote and beautiful pastoral landscape has a unique mix of habitats and remarkably intact pattern of historical settlements and features. It has 79 Scheduled Monuments, 19 Sites of Special Scientific Interest (SSSIs) and two National Nature Reserves. However, it has been largely ’hidden’ for the last 70 years, tucked away between the Lake District and Yorkshire Dales National Parks.

David Evans, development officer at Friends of the Lake District who are acting as lead body on behalf of the Partnership said: “We can’t wait to get started on the delivery of the scheme. We’ve worked with volunteers, community organisations, interest groups, farmers, landowners and businesses throughout the planning phase to help shape the projects."

See the Westmorland Dales Landscape Partnership here.

14 Jan 2019

Cold plunge at White Wells greets New Year

Plunge pool at White Wells, new years day 2019 - T&A

New Year's Day got underway with the traditional cold water bath at White Wells, overlooking Ilkley.

Volunteers signed up at the White Wells cafe before walking next door and taking the steps down into the murky water. The first to tackle the Ilkley challenge was Sandra Gale, who was followed by families and people of all ages.

Charli Oliver, 19, from Perth, in Western Australia, was joined by her boyfriend Matthew Lloyd and 15-year-old sister, Amy (see photo (c) Bradford Telegraph & Argus)

"It wasn't as bad as I was expecting," said Charli, who claimed the water was about six degrees centigrade. "My sister said she couldn't breathe when she got in because it was so cold."

White Wells is a spa bath situated on Ilkley Moor, on the route of A Dales High Way. It was built in around 1700 as an open air spa bath, later baths were enclosed and a single plunge pool survives today.

The current tenants have been there for nearly 20 years, but there are fears that the historic building could fall into disrepair, following council plans to double the rent. Previously the site stood empty for some time.

Town councillor Anne Hawkesworth said: "At that time the cottage was empty because a tenant could not be found. The security costs were exorbitant and a solution had to be found. It was decided that the answer was probably to find a tenant who would act as a caretaker on a nominal peppercorn rent- in reality who else would live up there - I certainly wouldn't."

She said the arrangement also included a requirement to open the cafe at specific times.

See more of White Wells here, and see the T&A report here.

2 Jan 2019

Ride2Stride 2019 Programme

The programme for next year's Ride2Stride - the Settle-Carlisle Walking and Music Festival - is now available online. The festival runs from April 30th to May 6th.

The popular festival of walks, talks and music along the world famous railway line is now in its 8th year. There are 31 led walks on offer, ranging from a 2 mile tour of the iconic Ribblehead Viaduct, to a 15 mile strenuous hike from Ribblehead to Horton crossing mighty Ingleborough.

Beyond Victoria Cave

Chris Grogan is leading a walk on behalf of the Friends of A Dales High Way on Friday, May 3rd, taking in sections of the long-distance trail around Settle. The 8.5 mile moderate circular walk from the town's station takes in the Crags, Caves and Kilns to the east of the town, with some steep climbs, before returning along the riverside. It starts at 10.22 to meet the train departing from Leeds at 09.19, with an expected return in time for the 16.28 train back to Leeds, after a short refreshment stop in the pub.

There are also three talks on offer in Settle through the week, as well as the lively music sessions each evening in pubs along the line from Appleby southwards. Especially welcome is the return to The Station Inn at Ribblehead on a Saturday night.

There was a brief moment in summer when it seemed the 2019 R2S festival might not happen, due to a number of logistical problems faced by a denuded steering group, but these issues were soon resolved and a new festival committee was established to take things forward.

The walks are free and no pre-booking is required. Just turn up at the designated railway station for the start.

See ride2stride.co.uk for the 2019 R2S Festival Programme. An archive of the R2S programmes from 2012-2018 can be seen at ride2stride.org.uk

22 Dec 2018

Ingleton start option for Three Peaks

A new start and finish for the Yorkshire Three peaks Challenge is being promoted by Business and Festival leaders in the town of Ingleton.

Ingleton's Three Peaks Challenge route

The proposed new challenge  route will be super tough - adding almost 6 miles to the distance, and extra ascent.

The proposal has come in response to problems caused to residents in the village of Horton-in-Ribblesdale, the most popular staring point for the challenge.

Debby Kuhlmann, chairman of the Ingleton Area Business Group said: “Over recent years due to an increase in the number of walkers Horton-in-Ribblesdale has become inundated and is struggling to cope. It was decided to launch Ingleton’s Three Peaks and promote Ingleton as the place to start and finish the challenge."

Carl Lis, ward representative for Ingleton and chairman of Yorkshire Dales National Park Authority said he supported the plan. “I think it will bring more visitors to Ingleton which can’t be a bad thing, though I think the longer distance making the walk over 29 miles will probably only attract perhaps 100 people each weekend. "

The proposed route leaves Ingleton Community centre car park and heads for Ingleborough summit via Crina Bottom. The route then follows the traditional way anti-clockwise through Horton, over Pen-y-ghent, on to Ribblehead and over Whernside, coming down to the Hill Inn. Turning right, the route then follows the road down to Chapel-le-dale, picking up the narrow back lane for a 4-mile trek back to Ingleton.

If it catches on, it will take some pressure off Dales High Way walkers on a busy weekend as they descend from Ingleborough to Humphrey Bottom.

See the new Ingleton's Three peaks Challenge website here, and our previous posting here.

2 Nov 2018

Leeds-Settle-Carlisle Line launch

Leeds-Settle-Carlisle signage, (c) Drew Haley.

The launch of a new website for the Friends of the Settle-Carlisle Line (FoSCL) has introduced a major change for the 4000-member support group.

The website strap-line has now been extended to read "The Leeds-Settle-Carlisle Line", helping emphasise the fact that the line is part of a major mainline railway. A new display at Leeds station showcases this.

Former FoSCL chairman Richard Morris, who helped develop the new website, said: "We wanted to make it clear that we're responsible for 72 miles of a unique mainline railway, and not a privately run heritage railway that just runs steam trains."

The organisation itself is unlikely, however, to change its name accordingly.

The railway offers walkers on a A Dales High Way unique access to the long-distance trail.

The Friends of the Settle Carlisle Line were originally formed in 1981 to campaign against a proposal to close the famous historic and scenic route. In 1989 the Government decided that the line must remain open. Since then FoSCL has acted as a user group to improve facilities and services for passengers.

The last two years or so have proved turbulent for the organisation, with mounting disquiet from some volunteers and members who have felt alienated over some recent decisions. Next May's Annual General Meeting may see several changes at the top, when the current Chairman steps down.

Photo shows the new display at Leeds station (© Drew Haley).

See the new FoSCL website here.

19 Nov 2018

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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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