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the route entirely at your own risk and that the information is not used for any commercial purpose.

Route No. 950421
Wass Bank, Cleveland Way, Helmsley, River Rye,
Ebor way, Sproxton circuit - 22km
North York Moors . . .

Map: OS Explorer OL26 North York Moors Eastern area

1.) Start at the top of Wass Bank (map ref. SE561805) about 1.4km north of Wass village. There is a wide grass verge here where walkers and dog walkers often park at an entrance to Byland Moor Plantation. From the entrance to the plantation follow the bridleway through the plantation for about 1.3km heading roughly NNW to the A170 opposite High Lodge farm. At the main road turn right and walk along the roadside verge for about 100m. Then cross the road to continue following the bridleway down the farm access drive, past some farm buildings and out to the open pasture land. From the start this has been the route used by the monks travelling between Rievaulx and Byland Abbeys. From the A170 continue along the bridleway for almost 3km to the road at map ref. SE570843, on the route of the Cleveland Way about 150m south west of Ashberry Farm.

2.) At the road, at map ref. SE570843, turn right and follow the route of the Cleveland Way along the road, over the old bridge over the River Rye with views of Rievaulx Abbey about 700m to the north of the road. From the bridge continue along the Cleveland Way route for about 600m to map ref. SE580840 where the Cleveland way turns right off the road to climb up through Quarry Bank Wood and continue along Whinny Bank to Griff Lodge at map ref. SE589834. There's a bench here with a fine view across Rye Dale. At the bench seat the track forks and the Cleveland way follows the left hand fork. The path crosses a steep sided little valley with steps down and up the far side. In the woods here are the remains of a WW2 army camp used by troops waiting to travel to the south coast for the 'D'-day invasion. Continue along the Cleveland way route to the edge of Helmsley and turn right at map ref. SE610838, into the main public car park (public toilets here at the turn)

3.) Cross the public car park to the far left hand corner and continue past the entrance to Helmsley Castle. Follow the footpath out to a minor road and cross the road to go between the buildings and into the market square. At the main road on the far side of the market square turn right and walk along the road to the road bridge over the River Rye. Cross the bridge and just across the bridge turn left off the road to follow a footpath across pasture land that is boarderd by the river. At the south eastern corner of the field the narrow path skirts the rivers edge through some woodland and then continues along the river bank. Over the years the official right of way has been crossed as the bends in the river have eroded but there is still a path on the south side of the river. Follow this riverside path past the ponds of a fish farm on the opposite side of the river until it reaches a footbridge across the river at map ref. SE631820. The route of the Ebor Way crosses the footbridge and from the footbridge follow the route of the Ebor Way as it crosses the fields and climbs up the hillside to a lane near Sproxton Hall on the edge of Sproxton village at map ref. SE620814. Follow the lane through Sproxton village to the main road (B1257).

4.) At the main road (B1257) turn left and follow the road for about 250m then turn right off the main road and follow a minor road, called Hag Lane, for about 2km to Holly Bower Farm. Where the minor road ends about 200m before the farm continue along the bridleway that follows the farm access track through the farm buildings and between the fields beyond the farm. About 600m beyond the farm the bridleway enters Pry Rigg Plantation. About 100m into the plantation the bridleway reaches a forestry access track. Here follow the bridleway left along the track for about 400m to map ref. SE590803. Turn righthere along another track through this open access forest. Continue along this track for about 700m to the road at map ref. SE584799. Turn right at the road for about 100m and then turn left off the road to follow a footpath along the edge of the field next to a wood for about 300m to a large earthwork on the right called Studford Ring. (note it's not a fortification because the ditch is inside the rampart) Retrace your steps to the road. At the road turn right and follow the road for about 2km, turning left at the junction about 200m past the cast iron mile post near the site of Tom Smith's Cross (a gibbet where the body of hanged highwayman Tom Smith was displayed) and return to the start of the walk.