“There’s no such thing as bad weather, only unsuitable clothing.”
Harrogate is known to be the gateway to the Yorkshire Dales and just a stones throw away is a beautiful 53 mile circular walk; the Nidderdale Way is a footpath I’ve trodden since my little trotters started walking. I’m from a walking family and its in our blood to lace up out walking boots and head for the hills, whatever the weather!
Last year, the Upper Nidderdale Landscape Partnership launched a great walking guide for the Nidderdale Way, featuring some of Yorkshire’s most famous sights. The spectacular 53 mile route is a long distance footpath in the easternmost valley of the Yorkshire Dales, encircling the River Nidd. It’s traditionally walked in four stages, each no longer than 15 miles.
The walk takes in iconic Yorkshire attractions, including Ripley Castle and its 18th century gardens; How Stean Gorge with its dramatic ravine; and the gritstone sculptures of Brimham Rocks.
Iain Mann, Scheme Manager at the Upper Nidderdale Landscape Partnership said, “The Nidderdale Way is a favourite for walkers of all abilities as paths are well maintained and sign posted. Running through the heart of Nidderdale Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, there are some remarkable heritage sites along the route.”
Four stages to the Niddlerdale Way
Each stage of the walk offers contrasting landscapes. Stage One from Pateley Bridge to Middlesmoor, includes Scar House Dam, the largest dam in Britain when it was finished in 1936. Stage Two, from Middlesmoor to Bewerley, takes in one of the most photographed churches in Britain in Middlesmoor to Nidderdale’s natural wonder, How Stean Gorge.
Stage Three, Bewerley to Ripley, includes the gritstone crag, Guisecliff, which rivals Brimham Rocks for views, to reminders of centuries past with the old Packhorse Bridge near Birstwith. Stage Four, Ripley to Pateley Bridge, features the rock formations of Brimham Rocks and the ancestral seat of the Ingilby family for 28 generations, Ripley Castle.
Iain added: “You don’t need to be a seasoned rambler, the walking terrain is moderate and there are country pubs and cafés in the Dales to refuel at, and even a Michelin starred restaurant on route.”
The Nidderdale Way is a place dear to my heart, so dust off those walking boots and get outside. That’s something I want to do more of this summer.
To download the free walking guide, visit uppernidderdale.org.uk
The Turner Family Walks
Information provided by Visit Harrogate.