News en route
Ingleborough Rescue Highlights Concerns
Concerns that people are ignoring Covid-19 restrictions to
visit the Yorkshire Dales were highlighted this weekend when two
walkers had to be rescued from the summit of Ingleborough.
Volunteers from the Cave Rescue Organisation (CRO)
based in Clapham were called out by North Yorkshire Police at
4.30 pm on Sunday, after a couple of walkers had lost their way on the
summit due to low lying fog, ice and snow.
The CRO noted that the couple, who had driven up from
Rochdale, had set off at 1 pm, wearing lightweight jackets and
smooth-soled footwear as well as using Google Maps for
Superintendent Mike Walker said: “This couple were incredibly
fortunate to have come through this experience without injury
and be able to tell the tale. We very clearly advised members of
the public this weekend to stay at home and when taking
exercise, stay local to stop the spread of Covid.
"Quite simply driving miles and miles, out of your village,
town or city to visit an open space is not a necessary journey
and is not acceptable. Neither is arriving at a challenging
walking location, inexperienced and unprepared in treacherous
"By making an irresponsible and ill-informed decision, the
safety of others such as the Cave Rescue Organisation volunteers
is also put in jeopardy and if any injury resulted, pressure
upon already stretched NHS resources."
On the same day another walker was rescued from the hillside
below Blua Crags, above Settle, after she slipped on steep, frozen
ground, sustaining a suspected ankle fracture.
14 Jan 2021
New Year - New Hope
After a year to forget, at last there's hope that 2021 will
be different. Today the new Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine begins
being administered to people across the country.
The government intends that over 20 million of the most
at-risk citizens will have been vaccinated by April. With their
current record of delivering on plans though, that seems
optimistic. But by early summer we should be able to return to
long-distance walking, even walking holidays - as we did briefly
in the late summer of 2020.
It comes at a time when second wave infections and
hospitalisations due to the new Covid-19 strain are passing the
peak of the first deadly wave last April. But hopefully this
will begin to be reversed as the vaccine is rolled out in
At the moment, only local people are eligible to go out
walking along sections of A Dales High Way. North Yorkshire now
falls within tier 3, Cumbria falls within tier 4. In these tiers
you should avoid travel outside your local area. These
restrictions look likely to be tightened, at least in the short
But now is the time to be optimistic and start planning for
the summer, when hopefully once again we can set off across the
glorious high country of the Yorkshire Dales and Eden valley.
4 Jan 2021
Ingleborough path repairs near completion
Work to repair the steep section of footpath between
Chapel-le-dale and Ingleborough, which rises from Humphrey
Bottom to the foot of the Swine Tail summit section, is expected
to be completed by Christmas. The path is now open for walkers
again whilst contractors finish various landscaping tasks..
This tricky section has provided many a hair-raising moment
for walkers on A Dales High Way, but the new blocked paving
looks much easier to negotiate.
The former stone pitching, in place since 1986, was crumbling
and has been removed, to be replaced with large gritstone
blocks. The blocks were sorted by the contractors - Terra Firma
Environmental Ltd - from a nearby boulder field on the flanks of
Ingleborough, stacked in helicopter bags and airlifted
onto the public footpath at the end of July 2020.
The works then started in August 2020 along with a closure of
the steepest section of the High Lot public footpath. A
temporary diversion 1 km further along the north-eastern ridge proved unpopular with 3 Peaks Challenge walkers.
Rob Ashford, National Park Area Ranger for Malhamdale &
Ribblesdale who is overseeing the project, said "Removal of the
existing stone pitching, installation of the new stone pitching
with the large gritstone blocks, drainage and associated
landscaping has been ongoing since August and we're coming to
end of the project. We're hoping the footpath
will be finished and open for Christmas, although the recent
snowfall has made it a bit harder for the contractors."
16 Dec 2020
Skipton High Street on Countryfile
BBC Countryfile's presenter Tom Heap spent time in Skipton
last week, filming for the popular TV series. He was in the High Street, looking at the effects of the lockdown on the
He talked to Shipley artist Jenny Tribillon, a signwriter and
window artist who originates from the South of France. Jenny has
been commissioned by the Skipton Business Improvement District
(BID) to transform some of the empty shop windows into painted
winter scenes. They chatted as she put the finishing touches to a
mural on the end of the former Edinburgh Woollen Mill store
between the High Street and Sheep Street.
Jenny, known as Jenny Froglet, was trained in window painting
by the American artist Leslie Ronald. She said she was very
pleased with the way the windows had turned out with many people
telling her how they brightened up the High Street.
Tom also talked to staff at Jenson Samuel as they prepare to
reopen the men's wear shop this week when this latest lockdown
is lifted and Skipton moves into Tier 2 level of restrictions.
Skipton has repeatedly been shown to be one of "the happiest
places to live" in surveys undertaken by the Office for National
Statistics and others. Property website RightMove was the latest
to give it the accolade last week after a survey of 21,000
respondents. It is a major stopover point for walkers on
A Dales High Way.
The filming is due to be televised on Sunday, December 13.
1 Dec 2020
A Tale of Two Bogs
On November 8 a walker posted a warning message on the Ilkley
Chat Facebook page:
"Walkers and runners please be careful on the valley side of
the stoned section of the Dales Highway, there’s a VERY DEEP
BOG. I saw a runner ended up to his waist. I went to help and
the stone slab tilted and ended too nearly stuck. It's a section
heading away from ilkley just before you can turn left to 12
Apostles (or right to head towards a Keighley gate). I’ll try
get a message to the Council. This is very dangerous. There was
unfortunately no wood or debris to make a warn cairn."
The post went viral very quickly, with 82 shares and over 100
Meanwhile, workers and volunteers from Moors for the Future
were out elsewhere on Ilkley Moor, planting sphagnum moss to
help regenerate the moor's bogs, a major contributor to carbon
capture and the fight against the climate change catastrophe.
The 5 year, £15 million EU funded project - MoorLife 2020 - will
protect the health of 95 square kilometres of active blanket bog
in the South Pennines.
Rangers from Bradford Council's Countryside Service were out
the next day and fixed the flagged path. The bog will take a
little longer to recover.
It's perhaps worth remembering that the flagging of the path
here - using old mill flags from Manchester - was only
undertaken in 2011. Until that time walkers and runners had to
cover the trail as best they could, with just a little wooden
boardwalk to help.
And the flagging wasn't installed in the first place for the
benefit of walkers or runners, but to protect the bogs from the
erosion they caused!
15 Nov 2020