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Looking across Swaledale to the valley of Swinner Gill between Muker and Keld
Looking across Swaledale to the valley of Swinner Gill between Muker and Keld

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Route No 50 - 16 July 2002
Muker, Thwaite, Angram, Keld Side
Kidson Force circuit - 13 km
Swaledale . . .

Map: OS Outdoor Leisure 30 Yorkshire Dales Northern and Central areas. 1:25000

Route map from OS Open Space service


Foxgloves near Thwaite

This morning was the fourth bright hot sunny day in a row. My neighbour, Jim, and I drove up to Muker in Swaledale and parked in the carpark next to the bridge over Straw Beck on the east side of the village. We started walking at 10.30 on the footpath across the fields to Usher Gap Bridge and then to Thwaite about 2km from Muker. On the edge of Thwaite the path meets the Pennine Way and about 50m further on there is a path to the right across the fields to Angram. All the farmers were haymaking. upper Swaledale looking towards KeldI
Kidson Force near Keld think there is some sort of scheme which pays the hill farmers not to cut the meadows for hay until mid July to allow time for the meadow flowers to set seed for next year. A few metres behind the telephone box in Angram is the start of a footpath which still has a farmer's sign attempting to deter walkers from using the path. We took this footpath across the rough pasture of Keld Side for about 2 km to High Bridge. It was a wonderful day with superb views of Swaledale. The grass banks beside the tracks were full of summer flowers. It was a great day to be alive in the countryside. At High Bridge we turned right along the road for 500m to a lovely stone arch bridge across the river to a footpath that runs along the top of Cotterby Scar (a limestone cliff along the north side of the river). We crossed the road that leads eventually to Tan Hill and followed the bridleway along the north side of the valley opposite Keld, to East Stonesdale and the Pennine Way. From here we followed the Pennine Way south for a few hundred metres to a side path down to Kidson force - a pair of waterfalls on the main river. We sat by the falls for some time and then continued along the lower path above the river and back to Muker where we sat outside the tea shop to enjoying the sunshine. It had been a beautiful walk on this lovely warm summer day. The whole route was about 13km and took us about 5 hours - well it was a really lazy day.

Kidson Force near Keld
Kidson Force near Keld

Looking down Swaledale from north side of Muker
Looking down Swaledale from north side of Muker

Muker
Muker

A Swaledale Tup in Swaledale
A Swaledale Tup in Swaledale