Looking over daletown to the misty valley of the river Rye
Looking over Dale Town to the misty valley of the river Rye

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Route No. 278 - Wednesday 7 January 2009
Hambleton Drove Road, Daletown,
Murton Grange, Caydale, Cleveland Way - 12km
North York Moors. . .

Ordnance Survey route map on the Landranger series map base.
View the route in Google Earth

Map: Ordnance Survey Explorer OL26 North York Moors Western area at 1:25000


Car park on the Hambleton Drove Road
Car park on the Hambleton Drove Road

Anyway today is the only day that both Jim and I are free of other commitments so we drove out to a little car park on the Hambleton Drove Road (map ref. SE509877) at the top of Boltby Bank.

Yesterday the weather was clear and bright, a lovely crisp day for a walk and the forecast for tomorrow is the same, but today it is grey and overcast with drizzle from time to time.

Setting off along the road towards Hawnby
Setting off along the road towards Hawnby

The ruins of Silver Hill Farm
The ruins of Silver Hill Farm

The ground had a sprinkling of snow with some treacherous icy patches. We set off along the road towards Hawnby and after about 350m at map ref. SE513881 we turned left off the road to follow a path across the fields.

Well, I've always know it as Boltby Bank but it's marked on the map as Sneck Yate Bank. We parked there at about 10.00am. The land here is at an elevation of over 300m above sea level.

Path across the fields from Silver Hill Farm
Path across the fields from Silver Hill Farm

Track across Murton Common
Track across Murton Common

When we reached the top of the steep slope down into Gowerdale, the valley was filled with mist leaving a fascinating scene below.

After about 850m at map ref. SE512890 we came through a gate and turned right to follow a track between the fields towards Gowerdale.

Harrows parked at the field edge ready for the next season
Harrows parked at the field edge

Heading towards Gowerdale across the fields
Heading across the fields towards Gowerdale

Barn overlooking Gowerdale
Barn overlooking Gowerdale

Beyond were the tops of the hills just visible above the layers of cloud.

There was a sea of mist below swirling round the skeletons of the winter trees.

The path down into Gowerdale
The path down into Gowerdale

Looking into Gowerdale through the mist
Looking into Gowerdale through the mist

The path down into Gowerdale
The path down into Gowerdale

From there we followed the bridleway up to the farm called Dale Town and continued along the bridleway to zig-zag up the hillside to the road at map ref. SE536882.

We just stood and looked for a while before following the path down to the ruin of Gowerdale House by the stream in the bottom of the valley.

Approaching the ruins of Gowerdale House
Approaching the ruins of Gowerdale House

Looking back over Dale Town to Hawnby Hill (centre) and Easterside Hill (right)
Looking back over Dale Town to Hawnby Hill (centre) and Easterside Hill (right)

The path down into Caydale
The path down into Caydale

It runs around the contour of the hillside from a lovely clear spring at the head of the valley to the site of a large tank or cistern at the village of Old Byland. This was the water supply for the village. The whole channel has been built very accurately starting at around 240m AOD at the head of the valley and ending at around 210m AOD just about the village after covering a distance of almost 4km from the spring to the cistern. It is marked on the map as "Old Byland Water Race".

From the road junction we walked along the road past Murton Grange Farm and took the path across the fields from map ref. SE535874. This path led us through Yowlass wood across Caydale and up the far side of the valley to a sturdy wooden seat bearing the carved inscription, "The Captains Seat". We stopped here for our lunch with a nice view across the valley. Just below the seat in a stone lined channel about 400mm wide.

The path down into Caydale
The path down into Caydale

Path across the fields to join the Cleveland Way
Path across the fields to join the Cleveland Way

The Captains Seat in Caydale
The Captains Seat in Caydale

We have used this path several times and there is an other path about 250m to the south that we had not walked before so we chose that one. It was quite a pleasant route snaking its way between two small blocks of woodland.

After our lunch we continued along the bridleway to the road at map ref. SE531861. We turned right at the road and walked along the road for about 1.6km to the road junction at map ref. SE514859. There is a path opposite the junction that crosses the fields to the Cleveland Way on Boltby Scar.

Walking along the top of Boltby Scar
Walking along the top of Boltby Scar

View from the top of Boltby Scar
View from the top of Boltby Scar

Walking along the top of Boltby Scar
Walking along the top of Boltby Scar

After just over 2km we came to the road at map ref. SE507875 where we turned right and walked the last 200m up the hill back to the car park on the Hambleton Drove Road.

From this path we turned right onto the Cleveland Way at map ref. SE507854. We followed the path along the top of Boltby Scar.

Disused quarry below the Cleveland Way
Disused quarry below the Cleveland Way

The view from High Barn on the Cleveland Way
The view from High Barn on the Cleveland Way

Approaching High Barn on the Cleveland Way
Approaching High Barn on the Cleveland Way

On the way home we stopped at a garden centre cafe in Thirsk where the coffee and bacon sandwiches made a very pleasant end to our day.

It had been an interesting walk with some fascinating views through the mist and low cloud. The whole route had been about 13km and had taken us four and a half hours to walk including our stops.

At the top of Boltby Bank heading for the car park
At the top of Boltby Bank heading for the car park