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Starting the climb onto Cringle Moor on the Cleveland Way
Starting the climb onto Cringle Moor on the Cleveland Way

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Route No. 344 - Wednesday 2 June 2010
Hasty Bank, Wainstones, Cold Moor,
Cringle Moor, Clay Bank circuit - 13km
Cleveland Hills, North York Moors . . .

Route map from Ordnance Survey Open Space service.

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


Cornflowers by the path
Cornflowers by the path

Leaving the forest edge and climbing up Hasty Bank
Leaving the forest edge and climbing up Hasty Bank

Here the Cleveland Way crosses the road and we turned right off the road to follow the Cleveland Way route heading West. We followed the path up the edge of the conifer plantation and then up on to the ridge of Hasty Bank.

It was a fine warm sunny day today and my neighbour, Jim, and I drove up out through Helmsley and along Bilsdale to the car park at the top of Clay Bank at map ref. NZ572036 overlooking Teesside. From the car park we walked back along the road for about 200m.

Starting the climb up Hasty Bank
Starting the climb up Hasty Bank

Looking along the ridge of Hasty Bank
Looking along the ridge of Hasty Bank

Looking down Bilsdale from the ridge of Hasty Bank
Looking down Bilsdale from the ridge of Hasty Bank

At this distance even that has its own fascination. The Wainstones are a popular venue for rock climbers, but there didn't seem to be any climbers there today.

We followed the path along the ridge for about 1km to the Wainstones at the Western end. All the way there is a great view out across Teesside to the Tees estuary in the East and the industrial towers of the petro- chemical industry along the river.

Looking back to the Wainstones on Hasty Bank
Looking back to the Wainstones on Hasty Bank

Looking along the Cleveland Hills to Cold Moor from the Wainstones
Looking along the Cleveland Hills to Cold Moor from the Wainstones

Looking back to the Wainstones
Looking back to the Wainstones

Looking back to Hasty Bank from Cold Moor
Looking back to Hasty Bank from Cold Moor

Starting the cilmb up on to Cold Moor
Starting the climb up on to Cold Moor

At the top there is a lovely vantage point looking out over Teesside to the North and down into both Bilsdale and the valley of Raisdale Beck to the South. After admiring the view for a while we continued on our way following the path down to the next col between Cold Moor and Cringle Moor.

We picked our way down the rocky path through the Wainstones to the col between Hasty Bank and Cold Moor. From there we continued along the Cleveland way route to climb up on to Cold Moor.

The paved Cleveland Way route over Cold Moor
The paved Cleveland Way route over Cold Moor

Looking ahead to Cringle Moor from the top of Cold Moor
Looking ahead to Cringle Moor from the top of Cold Moor

Start of our climb on to Cringle Moor
Start of our climb on to Cringle Moor

Cotton grass on Cringle Moor
Cotton grass on Cringle Moor

This butterfly kept its wings closed and refused to pose for us
This butterfly kept its wings closed and refused to pose for us

We followed the path around the edge of Cringle Moor to Alec Falconer's large stone memorial seat at the Western end. We sat there in the sunshine for a sandwich and a drink just looking at the wonderful view.

From there we climbed up on to Cringle Moor still on the route of the Cleveland Way. The Cleveland Way was paved with heavy sandstone slabs around 15 yeas ago. The work was very well done and it has all blended in to the landscape so well. There is little sign of any erosion now.

Looking back along the Cleveland Way to Cold Moor
Looking back along the Cleveland Way to Cold Moor

Nearing the top of Cringle Moor
Nearing the top of Cringle Moor

Heading for Alec Falconer's seat on Cringle Moor
Heading for Alec Falconer's seat on Cringle Moor

Descending from Cringle Moor on the Cleveland Way
Descending from Cringle Moor on the Cleveland Way

Our turning off the Cleveland Way
Our turning off the Cleveland Way

Heading out to the edge of the escarpment
Heading out to the edge of the escarpment

At this point, map ref. NZ531032, we turned right off the Cleveland Way following a path that contoured round the moor for about 200m. to the edge of the escarpment.

After our break we walked about 350m down the path from Cringle Moor towards Lord Stone's Cafe at the road below.

A wall brown butterfly by the path
A wall brown butterfly by the path

Heading out to the edge of the escarpment
Heading out to the edge of the escarpment

The view from the top of the steep descent
The view from the top of the steep descent

View along the escarpment as we made our way down
View along the escarpment as we made our way down

Steep path down the face of the escarpment
Steep path down the face of the escarpment

Steep path down the face of the escarpment
Steep path down the face of the escarpment

Path along the foot of the Cleveland Hills
Path along the foot of the Cleveland Hills

We crossed the road and continued along the path at the foot of the escarpment past Broughton Farm to another minor road at map ref. NZ555042.

The path led us down a very steep descent for almost 500m to a fence along the foot of the slope. Here we turned right and walked along the fence line for about 1km to a minor road at map ref. NZ541042 next to Toft Hill farm.

Steep path down the face of the escarpment
Steep path down the face of the escarpment

Path along the foot of the Cleveland Hills
Path along the foot of the Cleveland Hills

Track along the foot of the Cleveland Hills
Track along the foot of the Cleveland Hills

Looking up to Cringle Moor from the path around the foot of the Cleveland Hills
Looking up to Cringle Moor from the path around the foot of the Cleveland Hills

Path heading for Spring House farm
Path heading for Spring House farm

Freshly shorn sheep at Spring House farm
Freshly shorn sheep at Spring House farm

The track from Spring House farm
The track from Spring House farm

Just a few metres before we reached the road we turned right and pushed our way through the overgrown foliage to join a forest path leading up the hillside parallel to the road up Clay Bank.

Here we turned left and walked along a track for about 100m, then turned right to along a track at the foot of the slope again. We continued along the track and then a path to Spring House farm. From there we followed the farm access track out towards the road up Clay Bank.

Bird's foot trefoil by the
Bird's foot trefoil by the path

The track from Spring House farm
The track from Spring House farm

Looking for our turning to climb up Clay Bank
Looking for our turning to climb up Clay Bank

Start of the path up Clay Bank
Start of the path up Clay Bank

Drpping down to the road at the top of Clay Bank
Dropping down to the road at the top of Clay Bank

The whole walk had been 13km and it had taken us about four and a half hours to walk including our lunch break and general photo taking and admiring the amazing views along the way.

We continued climbing up the hillside through the forest for about 650m until our track joined a track from our right which took us down to the road just 100m below the entrance to the car park off Clay Bank.

The forest track up Clay Bank
The forest track up Clay Bank

Entrance to the car park at Clay Bank
Entrance to the car park at Clay Bank

The track up through the forest parallel to the road up Clay Bank
The track up through the forest parallel to the road up Clay Bank

Returning to the car park at the top of Clay Bank with the view out to Roseberry Topping
Returning to the car park at the top of Clay Bank with the view out to Roseberry Topping

Background Notes:
This 13km circular walk is to do just for the scenery, and it's a good work out too with several climbs on the Cleveland Hills. We start from the car park off the Great Broughton to Helmsley road at the top of Clay Bank. Straight away there is an amazing view from the elevated position of the car park looking East along the Cleveland Hills to Captain Cook's Monument and the striking shape of Roseberry Topping. From the car park we walk along the road to join the route of the Cleveland Way where it crosses the road. Here we turn off the road to climb up to the ridge of Hasty Bank. This is one of the Cleveland Hills that form that iconic skyline viewed from Teesside. At the ridge there is a view across the head of Bilsdale to the highest point on the North York Moors at Round Hill. We follow the ridge to the Wainstones at the Western end of Hasty Bank. This is a sandstone out crop popular with rock climbers as a practice ground. We drop down through the Wainstones to the grassy col between Hasty Bank and Cold Moor, and then continue along the Cleveland Way to climb up on to Cold Moor. At the top of the climb there is a great view out to the North over Teesside where the huge petro-chemical industry looks oddly attractive at this distance with its flare-stacks and steaming towers. You can still see Roseberry Topping away to the East from here and a little to the North of it you can see the Tees estuary, often with tankers and other large vessels lying at anchor waiting for the tide to come up river to berth. In the opposite direction there is a view along the ridge of Cold Moor running away South towards Bilsdale. The whole Cleveland Way here has been paved with substantial sandstone slabs that I believe came from the solid machinery floors of redundant mills in the South Pennines and Lancashire. From the top of Cold Moor we drop down again to the next grassy col and climb up again, this time to the ridge of Cringle Moor. At the end of the ridge is a large stone memorial seat to a walker called Alec Falconer. There is a tremendous view from this seat across the River Tees and into Co. Durham. It's a good spot for a lunch break too. From the seat we drop down for about 200m and then turn right away from the Cleveland Way towards the edge of the escarpment. Here it's worth pausing to look along the face of the Cleveland Hills with a series of eroded gullies and sharp edges plunging down to the foot of the hills. The path leads down the very steep slope to the fence at the edge of the farmland where we turn right and follow the path around the foot of the hills for about 4km almost to the road at the foot of Clay Bank. Here there is a somewhat overgrown path on the right that climbs up Clay Bank well within the forest but parallel to the road. After the overgrown start, it's a very pleasant grassy track that joins the road just below the car park where there's a last look at the view out to Roseberry Topping at the end of our walk.

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