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 Archive 2021

Addingham Path Survey

Addingham paths survey

Members of the Friends of A Dales High Way gathered in Addingham at the weekend to conduct a survey of the route's paths around the village.

They chose a day following a period of heavy rainfall to ensure the paths would be at their worst.

In fact most of the paths were fine, but 3 grot-spots were identified where some surface work might improve the situation. A report has been prepared and will be shared with Bradford Council's Countryside Service and with Addingham Parish Council.

The Friends are prepared to offer volunteer support for any works that might be identified.

After an enjoyable circular walk, taking in both the main Dales High Way route and the alternative through the village, the party retired to the Swan Inn for a fine meal and business meeting.

See Addingham Parish Council here and the Swan Inn here.

14 Dec 2021

Storm Arwen Recovery

Power lines damaged at Batty Moss

People and businesses along the route of A Dales High Way that were hit hard by Storm Arwen are beginning to recover at last.

The Station Inn at Ribblehead, which has been without electricity, gas, water or phone since the storm struck on Friday, today announced they were back in business! They had remained open throughout offering a blazing coal fire and bottled beers to cash customers.

Power lines across Batty Moss towards the viaduct were damaged (see photo above) and the road towards Ingleton was closed, with the road towards Hawes difficult to pass.

Elsewhere across the region, thousands of homes remained without power as power companies Northern Powergrid (NP) and Electricity North West (ENWL) were criticised by customers for "woeful communications".

See The Station Inn here.

1 Dec 2021

New waymark post for Trench Wood

The Friends erect a waymark post in Trench Woods

A working party from the Friends of A Dales High Way met on Wednesday to put up a new waymark post near the start of the trail in Trench Wood.

Bradford Council Countryside Service supplied the post, the permission and the loan of the tools,

Julia Pearson, Chair of the Friends, provided the experience and expertise, making sure they did it right. Chris Grogan supplied the cake.

The Countryside Service have recently resurfaced the bridleway that takes A Dales High Way into the woods, along with some other popular paths that link lower Baildon up to the top of Shipley Glen.

They suggested that a waymark post be installed at a fork, where the bridleway takes a sharp left turn downhill, whilst the Dales High Way continues straight on along path that gently works it's way up to the Glen top.

After a fine morning's work, the working party retired to hold the Friends' 2021 Annual General Meeting.

New waymark post in trench Wood

See the Friends of A Dales High Way here.

13 Nov 2021

North Yorkshire tops RSPB birdcrime report

RSPB Birdcrime Reoprt

North Yorkshire has again topped the league table of shame for raptor persecution – the seventh year in a row.

Conservation charity RSPB (Royal Society for the Protection of Birds) said 26 of the 137 confirmed incidents where birds of prey were illegally killed in 2020 happened in the county.

The organisation said, of these two thirds were directly related to grouse shooting and a further four incidents to other types of shooting. Victims in the county included 16 buzzards, two peregrine falcons, two red kites and one goshawk.

The Yorkshire Dales National Park Authority, whose area is mainly in North Yorkshire, said the report made grim reading.

The RSPB said: “Wildlife crime data, court convictions and peer-reviewed studies based on satellite tagging and bird of prey populations show that raptor persecution has the most negative conservation impact on raptors on land managed for driven grouse shooting.

“In order to support the largest possible number of red grouse for clients to shoot, the RSPB says that some estates kill protected birds of prey despite all birds of prey being protected by law in the United Kingdom.

“In April 2020, North Yorkshire Police officers found five dead buzzards on a grouse moor on the edge of Bransdale in the North York Moors. Four of the birds were confirmed to have been shot, and the injuries of the fifth were ‘suggestive of damage from a shotgun pellet’.

“Based on population studies for significant species, it’s believed the true number of raptors killed is far greater, with many crimes going undetected and unreported.”

See the RSPB birdcrime 2020 report here, and our previous posting here.

2 Nov 2021

New stile at Feizor

New stile at Feizor

Yorkshire Dales National Park ranger Nathan Allen has been busy fixing fencing and installing a new stile on the approach to Feizor, on the route of A Dales High Way.

Nathan posted the results on his Instagram page.

The new stile will help speed up those last few metres before an inevitable and well earned stop at Elaine's Tea Rooms!

See Elaine's Tea Rooms here.

21 Oct 2021

Ingleborough gate repair

Gate repaired on approach to Ingleborough

Repairing a broken gate on the path up to Ingleborough is just one of the jobs that new Park Ranger Ian Colledge has tackled since he took up post recently.

Ian, 25,  a former National Park Authority apprentice with roots in Ingleton, has become the new Yorkshire Three Peaks Ranger, with responsibility for maintaining paths on Ingleborough, Pen-y-ghent and Whernside. He takes over from Josh Hull.

The gate is on the approach to Ingleborough summit, just before the remains of the old shooters' hut on the route of A Dales High Way.

Ian said "This broken gate was reported by one of our volunteers. A few screws later and it’s good to go. It needs a new gate and post, but this quick fix should see it through until then.

“I’d probably have to say Ingleborough is my favourite of the three peaks and that’s mainly because I’ve got family that live in Ingleton.  Growing up I spent a lot of time going up Ingleborough and it was the first of the three peaks that I did – I was six or seven when I first went up it.  Without Ingleborough and all the time I’ve spent on it, I would never have had that interest in the outdoors and I would never have had the thought to do this kind of work in the first place."

You may well bump into Ian along the way - if you do please stop and let him know how much we all appreciate the hard work he and his colleagues do to keep the paths in such good condition.

See the Three Peaks Ranger facebook page here.

2 Oct 2021

Saltaire Festival Sunshine

Saltaire Festival in Roberts Park

Sunshine greeted visitors to Saltaire Festival this weekend, returning after a two-year absence due to the pandemic.

The second weekend of the festival included a funfair by Shipley Glen Tramway, a Continental Street Market along Exhibition Road and a Makers Fair at Victoria Hall.

Picnickers in Roberts Park were be treated to music in the Bandstand.

Last weekend saw an open-house event with gardens around Saltaire welcoming visitors.

Though the Festival is somewhat pared back from the usual busy schedule of events, it has proved none-the-less popular with visitors looking for some respite from the restrictions of the last two years.

The World Heritage Site of Saltaire is the start of A Dales High Way.

See Saltaire Festival here.

18 Sept 2021

Great North Bog Initiative

Jenny and a peat hag

The Great North Bog Initiative is one of five landmark projects that will receive £16 million awarded through the first round of Natural England’s Peat Restoration Grants.

The awards were announced last Friday as the first stage of a £50 million investment, building on the government's pledge to restore approximately 35,000 hectares of peatland in England by the end of this Parliament.

The Yorkshire Wildlife Trust, together with the North Pennines Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB) Partnership and Manchester University, will carry out restoration work on degraded blanket bog across 15 sites in a new collaboration called the Great North Bog Initiative.

Environment Minister Rebecca Pow said: "Our peatlands are remarkable habitats which provide homes for many precious species and hold enormous amounts of carbon. By restoring 35,000 ha of damaged and degraded peatlands in England, 9 million tonnes of carbon dioxide would be prevented from being released by 2050 which would make a significant contribution to combatting the devastating impacts of climate change and biodiversity loss."

The early route of A Dales High Way crosses Rombald Moor, important for it's upland peat bogs.

The Great North Bog is a landscape-scale approach to upland peatland restoration and will build on the work already undertaken by individual schemes, such as Moors for the Future Partnership.

See The Great North Bog Initiative here, and see our previous post here.

1 Sept 2021

Appleby Horse Fair Returns

Appleby Horse Fair

The traditional Appleby Horse Fair which attracts thousands of gypsies and travellers returned last week after the 2020 fair was cancelled due to the pandemic - only the second cancellation in its recent history.

The event normally takes place in June and has been going since the 1750s.

Some businesses in the town have decided to close over fears the fair may prompt a rise in Covid cases. Pop-up clinics are being made available for those who have not yet been vaccinated.

Les Clark, deputy chief executive of Eden District Council, said despite people's fears over the spread of coronavirus, it was the right that the gathering should go ahead.

"We could either wrap around that support, like we normally do, or we let things happen unplanned and ad hoc, which would be very difficult to control," he said.

Additional police resources were on hand after reports of a "fued" between two groups. Four people were charged with disorder offences after several arrests were made on Friday.

But on the whole, the fine weather meant another enjoyable week for the thousands who visited Appleby.

See the Appleby Horse fair site here.

16 August 2021

Skipton Gateway project to start next summer

Skipton Gateway plans for station access

Visualisation of new access to Skipton Railway Station (above).

North Yorkshire County Council hope to have plans for a £7.8 million "Gateway" scheme for Skipton finalised by next June, with work starting shortly afterwards. The project should be finished by Spring 2023.

The project will improve access for walkers and cyclists from the railway station, with additional links to the bus station, town centre and the college.

A recent public consultation has shown overall support, but with some adjustments needed.

North Yorkshire County Councillor Don Mackenzie said: “We are looking at alternatives for Broughton Road by putting the cycle lane on the highway as opposed to it being segregated from traffic and we are also taking steps to calm traffic.

“The project has had good support overall and what it is aiming to do is improve cycling and walking options not just for residents but also visitors because Skipton is the gateway to the Dales after all.

“When people arrive by train or bus we want them to feel like they are right in the centre of an area with improved facilities for all.”

Walkers tackling A Dales High Way in sections make particular use of the railway station.

The scheme is supported by the County Council, Craven District Council and the West Yorkshire Combined Authority.

See more on the Skipton Gateway scheme here.

1 Aug 2021

Relief as Public Toilets reopen in Saltaire

Toilet block at Saltaire reopens

Walkers planning to set out on A Dales High Way will be relieved to find that the public toilets in Saltaire, shut for four years, have reopened after a £15,000 refurbishment.

The block at the Caroline Street car park was closed along with the Saltaire Tourist Information Centre by Bradford Council as a cost-saving measure - a move that was much criticised as a retrograde step for a World Heritage site.

Two months ago the newly formed Shipley Town Council decided to take over the licence to run the site, rent-free from the District Council, initially on a year's trial basis.

The money has been used to deep-clean the facilities, repaint it in the heritage colour "Saltaire Green" and generally repair the toilets.

The toilets will be open between 8am and 8pm during the summer months, in normal circumstances, including weekends. There will be no charge and they will be cleaned once per day.

Councillor Mike Connors, Chair of Shipley Town Council, cut the ribbon on the refreshed toilet block last Saturday.

He said: "We ultimately owe the re-opening of this much-needed facility to Robbie Martin, who had the foresight to successfully petition for the creation of Shipley Town Council. Without the new town council, it is unlikely that Saltaire's toilets would have been re-opened in 2021, if ever."

See Shipley Town Council's website here

19 July 2021

New Group for Dales High Way walkers

Dales High Way Facebook Group

Social media has always played an important part in letting people know all about A Dales High Way. The Friends' have their own Facebook Page which they use to pass on the latest information about the trail.

However, more recently Facebook Groups have grown in popularity, allowing members to communicate directly with each other, to ask and answer questions and to share tips, photos and film.

So the Friends have launched a brand new Dales High Way Facebook Group, which is open to anyone who has or plans to walk or run the route.

The first batch of members are already engaged in sharing the latest news with each other and those who are currently on the trail.

"I really love to see people's photos and hear their tales," said Chris Grogan, who administers the Group.

" I am sure the Group will be very useful for those planning to tackle the challenge that is A Dales High Way. It is a great way of letting walkers engage directly with each other, sharing tips, answering queries and supporting those setting off for the first time."

New members have to request to join the group and are approved by the admin Chris. It's a very easy process.

Apply to join the Dales High Way Facebook Group here.

8 July 2021

Friends' Summer Newsletter 2021

Summer Newsletter 2021

The new Summer Newsletter of the Friends of A Dales High Way is now available as a downloadable pdf file.

It's been a strange year, but thankfully we are beginning to get back towards some sort of normality, and walkers are returning to walk A Dales High Way once again.

Julia Pearson, who chairs the Friends, considers what wild treats can be found along the Way, as she bumps into some walkers just setting out along the route for the second time.

There's an in-depth account of the very first Ultra-marathon race along the trail, run by Punk Panther Marathons. Winner Daniel Hendriksen completed the 90-mile run in under 21 hours! Remarkable.

The Friends' were on hand running the checkpoint at Settle.

Bradford Council has been busy with some important upgrades to the route that falls in their patch, along with improvements on Ingleborough courtesy of the Yorkshire Dales National Park Authority.

The return to full normality - expected on June 21st -  has been put on hold for at least a month, as there are worrying signs of a further wave of infections. But hopefully the roll-out of vaccinations will help us get there soon.

In the meantime, get back out on the Fells once more and enjoy the summer!

Download the Summer Newsletter as a pdf file here.

19 June 2021

New footway alongside busy Otley Road section

The new footway created alongside the busy Otley/Bingley Road

A potentially dangerous short road section near the start of A Dales High Way has been made safe, thanks to work by Bradford Council's Highways department.

The 200 metre road section leads from Weecher Reservoir onto Bingley Moor. Traffic along this stretch is very fast and the only verge on one side was difficult on foot due to a drainage ditch. This has now been stabilised and filled over with gravel, and bollards have been erected to separate it from the traffic.

The improvement had been requested by walkers from the local Walkers are Welcome groups and the Friends of A Dales High Way. The section is used by other local trails, including the Welcome Way and Bradford Millenium Way.

Originally it was anticipated that walkers' groups would raise money towards the cost of the work, but in the end the council received additional government funding to cover the full cost.

This means a much safer passage for walkers. Our thanks must go to Kevin Whittaker of Bradford Highways in particular for making this happen!

See Baildon Walkers are Welcome here.

1 June 2021

Runners complete first Dales High Way Ultra

2021 Dales High Way Ultra winner Daniel Hendriksen

17 runners set off on the first Dales High Way Ultra, organised by Punk Panther Ultra Marathons, with 12 finishing the gruelling race on Sunday morning.

Jason Millward set a blistering pace throughout the race, and as he was tracked dropping from the Howgill Fells it looked certain that he'd smash the record set only 2 days before. Alas, Jason was forced to withdraw at the final stage.

First to finish was Daniel Hendriksen, in just 20 hours 56 minutes. Daniel then went on to complete the 100 mile circuit taking in the additional High Cup Nick circular!

Second place on the Dales High Way went to Mark Kennedy, who came in 2 hours later. Second spot on the long race went to Andrew Merrick, who came in alongside the first woman to finish, Jane McCarthy, who set a new woman's record for the route at 23 hours and 2 minutes. Both also went on to complete the 100 miles.

Javid Bhatti was the other runner to complete 100 miles, with a further 8 runners completing the 90-mile Dales High Way.

Race organiser Ryk Downs said: "The race started in torrential rain, which lasted until Settle, and the timing meant everyone had to go through the Howgills in the dark, which was a huge challenge. All runners thoroughly enjoyed themselves saying that the route was stunning, yet brutal to run, especially in the conditions. They all said they would be back next year, several experienced runners saying it was the best race they had ever done!"

The Friends of A Dales High Way ran the Settle checkpoint and had a great time. The Friends received a generous donation of £170 from the race organisers.

Dales High Way Ultra runners-up (left); frineds of A Dales High Way at checkpoint 4 in Settle (right)

Photos: (top) Daniel Hendriksen presented with the Winner's Trophy by Ryk and Beverley Downes. Jane McCarthy receives the Women's Trophy and Andrew Merrick Runner-up Trophy from organisers Ryk Downes and Steven Brown (bottom left) and David & Bridget from the Friends at the Settle checkpoint (bottom right).

See the full results here.

14 May 2021

New record set before race begins

Mark kerry set new Fastest Known Time on A Dales High Way

A new Fastest Known Time record for running the route of A Dales High Way has been set just hours before the Punk Panther Ultra marathon set off.

The record - an incredible 20 hours 31 minutes 23 seconds was set by Mark Kerry as he ran into Appleby at 7.45 pm on Friday night. Mark, a "Montane Ambassador", had set off from Saltaire in the dark at 11.13 pm on Thursday night, running with a support crew including a rota of pace runners.

He was blessed with good weather conditions.

After Chris Grogan congratulated him on his achievement, Mark replied "Had such a great day out. Fantastic route."

Meanwhile, the first Punk Panther runners left Saltaire just after 6 am Saturday morning, as rain started to fall. Heavy rain is forecast for the duration, making this a very tough challenge, but the runners were all cheerful and in good spirits.

Photo shows Mark Kerry.

See the Fastest Known Time entry here. Follow the Punk Panther race live with Track Trail here.

8 May 2012

"Stunningly Brutal" Dales High Way Ultra

Ryk and Helen start out to recce the Dales High Way Ultra, July 2020

Runners are gearing up to take part in the Dales High Way Ultra marathon next week.

The race covers the whole 90-mile Dales High Way - a route described as "stunningly brutal" by one runner after a recce of the route for the organisers last July.

Runners have up to 36 hours to complete the race, with an optional additional 10-mile loop up to High Cup Nick at the end, for those wanting to push the limit to 100 miles.

The race was initially planned for last May, but had to be cancelled due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

Due to current restrictions, all checkpoints will be outdoors, and only 21 runners are expected to participate. They will leave Saltaire on Saturday morning, May 8th on a staggered start from 6 a.m. onwards.

The race is organised by Punk Panther Ultra Marathons UK, led by Ryk and Bev Downes. The races are professionally organised, with established checkpoints along the route and qualified medical support. Each runner also carries a tracker so that their progress and position can be followed throughout.

Competitors can gain 5 or 6 points towards qualification to the prestigious Ultra Trail du Mont Blanc (UTMB). The UTMB race involves around 106 miles (170km) of running and a circumnavigation of Mont Blanc, the highest mountain in Western Europe.

Members of the Friends of a Dales High Way will be running the race checkpoint at Settle on Saturday afternoon.

Photo shows Ryk Downes and Helen Clayman set off to recce the route in July last year.

See our previous posting here, and follow the race live on Track-Trail here.

1 May 2021

Gentleman Jack filmed in Saltaire

Gentleman Jack filming in Saltaire

Saltaire, at the start of A Dales High Way, once more became a film set as a section of the mill was made over into a busy street scene.

Work on the set continued for several weeks, building shop fronts, including a pub, a tailors and a chemists.

Filming took place over two days this week, with parking in lower Saltaire suspended for the duration. A huge white crane, with Warner Brothers set lighting and rigging written on it, was also at the filming location.

The new second season of the BBC/HBO drama, created by Sally Wainwright, covers the further adventures of 19th century landowner Anne Lister, played by Suranne Jones. Timothy West is amongst actors in the new series.

Other scenes were filmed nearby at Haworth Moor's Penistone Country Park in February.

See more about Gentleman Jack here, and Anne Lister here.

16 Apr 2021

Glovershaw Beck improvement

Glovershaw Beck repairs March 2021

A recently repaired section of path alongside Glovershaw Beck, near the start of A Dales High Way, has been improved further.

The path was originally repaired with an innovative "green revetment" last August, after floods had washed away a section of banking.

But further flash flooding over the winter had caused a partial collapse of the new banking. The original contractors returned to fix the problem, and over two days re-engineered and extended the revetment with a more contoured face.

The beck floor has also been cleared.

It is hoped the new look revetment will better carry the surge of flood water when it returns. The repair has come just as walkers begin to return for the new season.

See previous story here.

2 April 2021

View from the Riverbank


Three presentations on different environmental projects in the Eden Valley are on offer to all this spring, hosted by EDEN Rivers Trust (ERT).

View from the riverbank features three virtual talks via Zoom – river restoration, natural flood management and the eradication of invasive non-native species. It will begin with River restoration in the Upper Eden, Thursday, March 18, 6.30-7pm, with Lev Dahl, River Restoration Manager, who gives an exclusive virtual tour of a couple of recently completed river restoration projects in the Upper Eden.

Natural flood management in the Pennines follows on Thursday 22 April, with Dr. Jenny Garbe, the Trust's Natural Flood Management Project Manager, on covering leaky dams, tree and hedge planting, and how they all contribute to reducing the risk of flooding to Eden’s Communities at Risk.

Finally Ditching the invasive species in Trout Beck and beyond on Thursday 20 May, with Dr. Jenny Garbe, Trout Beck Project Manager and Jenni Payne, Volunteer Coordinator, who will talk about their battle against one of Eden’s most prolific alien invaders – Himalayan balsam.

The projects cover the Upper Eden valley, where A Dales High Way enters its final stage, finishing at Appleby-in-Westmorland. This part of the Westmorland Dales became part of the Yorkshire Dales National Park in August 2016.

Each 30-minute talk will be followed by a Q&A session where you can ask your burning questions. Joining in is easy, though you will need to register in advance to book your place. Once you have registered, you will be sent a confirmation email with the details of how to log in.

See details of the virtual talks here.

15 march 2021

Government Roadmap - when can Trail Walking Resume?

Walkers on a Dales High Way in Ravenstonedale

Walkers planning to tackle A Dales High Way this summer can begin planning in earnest, with the new government roadmap offering a potential timeline for the easing of current restrictions.

The 4-part roadmap suggests that by 17 May hotels, B&Bs and hostels can re-open, and by as early as 12 April walking holidays will be possible for those hiring holiday cottages or camping.

All the proposed dates are given as the earliest for each step change, subject to the success of the ongoing vaccination program and the continued reduction in the infection rate.

Travel restrictions remain in the initial stage, with some restrictions lifted on 8 March. By 29 March the "Stay at Home" rule ends, but the advice to only travel locally remains in force.

Step 2, on 12 April, expect an easing of travel restrictions, with non-essential retail opening and pubs, restaurants and cafes able to offer outdoor service. Self contained accommodation - holiday cottages and some camping facilities, will become available.

Step 3, on 17 May, sees outdoor events and entertainment open, with outdoor gatherings of up to 30 people allowed. Hotels, B&Bs and hostels reopen with pubs, cafes and restaurants able to offer table service indoors.

By 21 June, Step 4, all restrictions are expected to be lifted.

Social distancing and Covid-19  hygiene rules will continue throughout.

See the Government Roadmap in detail here.

1 March 2021

New Online Map Tools to aid Trail Planning

Dales High Way Route map and features

Some new online map tools have been developed to help those planning to walk A Dales High Way.

The new map features have been developed by Skyware Press, who publish the Dales High Way Route Guide and Companion, and are free to use on this website.

Tony Grogan, co-author of the books and a director of Skyware, said: "We have been offering an online map of the route for some time, which allows people to zoom in and pan around and explore the route in detail. But, taking advantage of the current lockdown restrictions, we have spent some time adding new features, which we hope will help those planning and walking the route in the future."

The online map uses Ordnance Survey Map API mapping which shows topographical detail at several different zoom levels and allows users to explore the whole route with ease.

"There is a new feature which shows the Skyware strip-map coverage, as shown in the Route Guide, allowing the coverage to be seen in a wider context.

"There is also an new Geolocation Tracking feature, which is aimed at users of mobile devices like modern smartphones, which are GPS enabled. This allows you to track your position relative to the route, and hopefully will help reassure walkers when needed."

There are a couple of caveats: the geolocation tracking feature uses mapping which requires a good strong signal to download - which may be sometimes unavailable along the trail, especially in more remote locations. This feature also tends to drain battery charge quicker when in constant use, so should be used sparingly.

"These are still in early development, so we'd very much appreciate any feedback. Email us at "friends (at) daleshighway (dot) org (dot) uk and let us know what you think" said Tony.

These tools should only be used as an aid; walkers on the route should use the Route Guide or map and a compass for primary navigation.

See the new online detailed mapping here.

13 Feb 2021

Surprising Lockdown Stats for Dales National Park

Light pollution photo shows National Park Dark Sky Reserve

There were some very surprising results from visitor surveys in the Yorkshire Dales National Park through the Covid-19 pandemic last year.

Despite severe lockdowns in early spring and late autumn, visitor numbers overall remained high, with more first time visitors to the National Park and many more younger visitors.

The surprising stats were laid out by Kathryn Beardmore, director of Park Services, at the virtual meeting of the Park's Management Plan Annual Forum, which was held on 20 January.

Typically, only 44% of visitors are under 55 years old, but last year this shot up to 70%. For many this was their first visit to the Park, including a third of visitors to Malham and a half of visitors to Aysgarth.

Walking was one of the chief attractions, with as many visiting Malham Cove in between July and October as any other year, and more walkers climbing Pen-y-ghent in this period than previous years. Over 80% reported being "extremely satisfied" with their visit, despite many facilities being closed.

Pre-Covid tourism figures showed a steady increase between 2015 and 2019, with a 30% increase in staying visitors in the summer months (April to September), and a very welcome 40% increase in the winter months (October to March). Undoubtedly the award of International Dark Sky Reserve status for the National Park last December can only help.

PHOTO: Light pollution photo shows National Park Dark Sky Reserve.

See all the reports for the 2021 Dales National Park Management Plan Annual Forum here, and join the Dales Dark Skies Festival, 12-28 February, here.

1 Feb 2021

Ingleborough Rescue Highlights Concerns

Ingleborough rescue on Jan 10 2021 by CRO - photo Paul Moore

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 navigation.

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 weather conditions.

"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.

See the Cave Rescue Organisation here

14 Jan 2021

New Year - New Hope

HF Holidays

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 numbers.

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 term.

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.

See the latest Yorkshire Dales National Park Covid-19 update here.

4 Jan 2021

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