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Limestone pavement beside the Dales Way
Limestone pavement beside the Dales Way

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Route No. 167 - Wednesday 1 March 2006
Grassington, Conistone, Malham Moor
Treshfield circuit - 17.5km
Wharfedale, Yorkshire Dales . . .

Maps: OS Explorer OL2 Yorkshire Dales Southern & Western areas at 1:25000
Route Map on 'Landranger' base from OS Open Space service

View south from the Dales Way above Grassington
View south from the Dales Way above Grassington

This morning I drove to Grassington to meet two friends in the car park by the visitor centre, map ref. SE 002637. As I drove into the town I noticed a small neat hand written sign suspended under the Grassington town name plate, which read "Twinned with paradise". I had to agree that Grassington does occupy an iddylic setting in the heart of Wharfedale. We started walking at about 10.15am up the village street following the Dales Way route heading towards Kettlewell. It was one of those crisp cold clear winter's days with bright sunshine and blue sky, absolutely perfect for walking.

We left the town on a walled track heading north from map ref. SE 002644. The Dales Way leaves the track to go across the fields to the left but we stayed on the track for a few hundred metres to rejoin the Dales Way at map ref. SE SD 998652.

Leaving Grassington on a walled track heading north
Leaving Grassington on a walled track heading north

Looking west from the Dales Way at map ref. SE 996663
Looking west from the Dales Way at map ref. SE 996663

We followed this route for almost 3km to map ref. SD993677 where we turned left on to a path down into Conistone Dib, an interesting limestone gorge.

The Dales Way heading towards Conistone Dib
The Dales Way heading towards Conistone Dib

Old lime kiln built from massive limestone blocks
Old lime kiln built from massive limestone blocks

We continued down Conistone Dib for about 1km to the village of Conistone.

The path brought us into the dib about halfway down and on reflection I was sorry that we had not continued on the Dales Way to the top of the dib, because the first part is probably the most spectacular bit.

Looking up Conistone Dib from map ref. SD 990679
Looking up Conistone Dib from map ref. SD 990679

Negotiating a narrow section of Conistone Dib near the village
Negotiating a narrow section of Conistone Dib near the village
Negotiating a narrow section of Conistone Dib near the village
Negotiating a narrow section of Conistone Dib near the village
Leaving Conistone Dib above the village
Leaving Conistone Dib above the village
Mossy wall in the village of Conistone
Mossy wall in the village of Conistone
Conistone village
Conistone village

From the village we followed the road across the river Wharfe to the B6160 near Kilnsey and turned off the main road at map ref. SD 976674 on to a path heading westwards up the hillside to join Mastiles Lane at map ref. SD 968673.

Kilnsey Crag
Kilnsey Crag

The snowy peak of Buckden Pike just visible over the ridge
The snowy peak of Buckden Pike just visible over the ridge

We continued along the lane, an old green road, for a few hundred metres to map ref. SD 964670. Here we turned left off the lane on to a bridleway heading generally southwards across Malham Moor.

The snowy ridge of Great Whernside seen from Malham Moor
The snowy ridge of Great Whernside seen from Malham Moor

After about 2km we came to a minor road which climbs up on to the moor from Threshfield. We crossed the road and continued along the bridleway for another 2km to map ref. SD 958630.

Looking over Grassington from the moorland track above  Threshfield
Looking over Grassington from the moorland track above Threshfield

Looking over Grassington from the moorland track above  Threshfield
Looking over Grassington from the moorland track above Threshfield

Here we took the left hand fork of the track. We followed this track for about almost 3km to the main road above Threshfield at map ref. SD 987632.

Looking over the disused railway at Treshfield towards the village of Thorpe
Looking over the disused railway at Treshfield towards the Thorpe
Wier on the river Wharfe below Grassington
Wier on the river Wharfe below Grassington

We walked along the main road (B6265) for about 300m into the village where we turned right to cut through the village to the end of the minor road at a 'T'-junction where we turned right again for about 150m to map ref. SD 992634. Here we turned off the road to follow a path across the fields to a road at map ref. SD 997633.

River Wharfe racing throught the rocks below the wier at Grassington
River Wharfe racing throught the rocks below the wier at Grassington

We followed the road, left at the junction to a footbridge over the river Wharfe at map ref. SE 000633. We crossed the footbridge and followed the path back up to the car park. The whole route had been 17.5km and had taken us about 5 hours to walk including a couple of short refreshment stops.

Crossing the footbridge over the Wharfe heading back to the car park in Grassington
Footbridge over the Wharfe heading back to the car park in Grassington
Wier on the river Wharfe below Grassington
Wier on the river Wharfe below Grassington