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Cold Moor from the path up to Cock Howe
Cold Moor from the path up to Cock Howe

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Route No. 196 - Tuesday 26 September 2006
Chop Gate, Cock Howe, Barker's Crags
Lord Stone's Cafe, Cringle Moor
Cold Moor circuit - 16km
Bilsdale, North York Moors

Map OS Explorer OL26 North York Moors Western area at 1:25000
Route Map on 'Landranger' base from OS Open Space service
Open this route in Google Earth


Start of the climb to Cock Howe from the village hall car park
Start of the climb to Cock Howe from the village hall car park

I started walking at about 10.15am and set off from the car park up the steep climb to Cock Howe at map ref. SE 542983. The first kilometre from the car park climbs about 250m - an average gradient of 1 in 4 (or 25% as they say nowadays).

It was a lovely warm, sunny day so this morning I drove to the little car park at the village hall in Chop Gate, map ref. SE 559993. My two regular walking companions were both off playing at grandads (that's babysitting their respective grandchildren, it's my turn at that tomorrow).

Cold Moor from the path up to Cock Howe
Cold Moor from the path up to Cock Howe

Cock Howe
Cock Howe

At map ref. NZ 525001 the path reaches a stile over a wire fence and just over the stile there is a very convenient rock shaped like a large chair and giving a great view down Scugdale. This rock has become a traditional stopping point for me and I sat there in the sunshine for almost 15mins enjoying the view.

I paused a few times on the way up just to look at the lovely views over Bilsdale. It really is a beautiful place. From Cock Howe I headed north along the ridge track to Green Howe and continued along the track towards Barker's Crags with a lovely view down Scugdale on my left and across Raisedale on my right.

Green Howe
Green Howe

Looking down Scugdale from the track approaching Barker's Crags
Looking down Scugdale from the track approaching Barker's Crags
Looking down Bilsdale from the rocky summit at map ref. NZ 523012
Looking down Bilsdale from the rocky summit at map ref. NZ 523012

The peak of Roseberry Topping from the path near Lord Stone's Cafe
The peak of Roseberry Topping from the path near Lord Stone's Cafe

I followed the acess road down the hill to join the Cleveland Way by the road at map ref. NZ 523030. I crossed the road and once over the stile turned right to follow the fence down a few metres to the gravel car park in front of Lord Stone's Cafe. The cafe is well disguised being built into the hillside. It was quite busy on this sunny day. I found an empty picnic tale out side and enjoyed a bacon & blackpudding roll with a mug of tea to set me up for the rest of the walk.

After my break I continued along the path up through Barker's Crags and on to Brian's Pond. The pond is in the middle of a large heather clad plateau and I followed the track through the heather and up to the Carlton Moor Gliding Club air field. The path turned right off the track to cross the heather for a few hundred metres and join the access road to the air field at map ref. NZ 521022. The view across Tesside had now opened up with the industry looking strangely attractive in the hazy middle distance and the blue of the Tees estuary and the North Sea on the horizon.

The peak of Roseberry Topping from the path near Lord Stone's Cafe
Looking towards Roseberry Topping from the path near Lord Stone's Cafe

The pond at Lord Stone's Cafe
The pond at Lord Stone's Cafe
Roseberry Topping from Cringle Moor
Roseberry Topping from Cringle Moor
The Cleveland way on Cringle Moor
The Cleveland way on Cringle Moor
Looking east from the Alec Falconer memorial seat
Looking east from the Alec Falconer memorial seat

The Alec Falconer memorial seat
The Alec Falconer memorial seat

I think that the paving has been very well done. It blends in and looks exactly right as though it is an old paved pannier way. On this part of the walk I passed two ladies who were walking the coast to coast route and planned to stay at Clay Bank top tonight and finish on the coast in two days. I followed the Cleveland Way down from Cringle Moor and up onto Cold Moor at map ref. NZ550034. Here I had a last look at the view from the edge and then turned south to follow the path along the ridge of Cold Moor.

After my lunch I set off to tackle the climb up to Alec Falconer's memorial seat on Cringle Moor at map ref. NZ 535033. This is a wonderful view point where I stopped to take a few photos, but it's very hard to capture such a panorama. This part of the route is along the Cleveland Way which was paved about 10 years ago to combat the erosion cause by so many walkers on this popular route.

The Cleveland way on Cringle Moor
The Cleveland way on Cringle Moor

Remains of an old moorland Cross
Remains of an old moorland Cross by the Cleveland Way
Cringle Moor from the path up Cold Moor
Cringle Moor from the path up Cold Moor
The wainstones from Cold Moor
The Wainstones from Cold Moor
A wheatear ( at the limit of my camera's range)
A wheatear ( at the limit of my camera's range)
A last look at the view towards the sea from Cold Moor
A last look at the view towards the sea from Cold Moor
The track down into Bilsdale from Cold Moor
The track down into Bilsdale from Cold Moor

The track down into Bilsdale from Cold Moor
The track down into Bilsdale from Cold Moor

I followed the path for almost 1km back into Chop Gate. The path emerges into Chop Gate at a junction opposite the village war memorial and from there it is a walk of about 250m along the road back to the village hall car park. The whole route had been about 16km and including my stops it had taken me five and a half hours to walk.

I continued along the track to the end of the ridge where the track forked at map ref. 552016, and I took the left hand fork down towards Chop Gate. At the edge of the heather moor the track became a treelined path between the fields.

Track between the fields above Chop Gate
Track between the fields above Chop Gate

Track between the fields above Chop Gate
Track between the fields above Chop Gate
Oak apples - caused by a gall wasp
Oak apples - deformed acorns caused by a gall wasp
War memorial in Chop Gate
War memorial in Chop Gate