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Knabs Ridge wind farm
Knabs Ridge wind farm

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Route No. 431 - Tuesday 9 August 2011
Pateley Bridge, Abraham Crags, Heyshaw,
Dacre Banks, Glasshouses circuit - 14km
Nidderdale . . .

Route map from Ordnance Survey Open Space service.

Map: OS Explorer 299 Nidderdale @ 1:25000

Another fine walk contibuted by Ray Brown - Thanks Ray!


Approaching Skrikes Wood
Approaching Skrikes Wood

In 300 metres, following a sharp left bend on an ascent, we left the road to step up to a small gate on the right. Climbing steeply uphill through pasture we reached a second gate briefly to access Skrikes Wood. Taking a left fork in the path we continued uphill over Nought Moor through two further gates to cross Nought Bank Road by an information board. A distinct path led us past the twin stone towers of Yorke’s Folly

From Pateley Bridge our route essentially followed the Nidderdale Way to Dacre Banks and then returned along the Nidd valley. Turning left from the car park at SE 157655, we walked along the B6265 road for some 200 metres to the Bewerley road junction and then continued a further 850 metres through Bewerley to cross Turner Bridge where we turned right into Nought Bank Road.

Yorke's Folly
Yorke's Folly

A crevasse on Abraham Crags
A crevasse on Abraham Crags

Glasshouses from Abraham Crags
Glasshouses from Abraham Crags

Drax power station 38 miles from Abraham Crags
Drax power station 38 miles from Abraham Crags

In the middle distance was the Knabs Ridge wind farm and the Menwith Hill “golfballs” and almost 40 miles away we could discern the power stations of Drax and Eggborough.

With Guisecliffe wood on our left and moorland on our right we continued to the communications mast at Abraham’s Crags. Here, on this day with good visibility, the views in all directions were magnificent. Beyond Pateley Bridge, Gouthwaite Reservoir seemed quite close. Glasshouses lay beneath us.

Gouthwaite Reservoir & Pateley Bridge from Abraham Crags
Gouthwaite Reservoir & Pateley Bridge from Abraham Crags

Communications mast Abraham Crags
Communications mast Abraham Crags

Caution had been needed to stay on the path as Guise Cliff had offered some hazards including the occasional crevasse, yet we encountered a lone female walker wearing flip-flops.

The Menwith Hill golf balls
The Menwith Hill golf balls

Vintage post box in Heyshaw
Vintage post box in Heyshaw

A good farm track from Lanes Foot barn
A good farm track from Lanes Foot barn

Ancient or modern cup & ring marks?
Ancient or modern cup & ring marks?

We made our way past a curiously marked stone towards the opposite corner of that field and a stone stile, rendered obsolete by the collapsed stone wall on our right. Soon another stile on the left took us into fields and, as we aimed for the settlement of Dacre Banks ahead, a path and then a track took us through a farm at SE 192620. A signed left turn off the track led us through a second farm, with imposing buildings, to an alleyway into a modern housing estate, Grange Road, and so to the B6451 road.

From the mast a smooth farm track led to Heyshaw, mainly a small collection of farms, with a freshly painted post-box of Victorian vintage. Here a signpost pointed us over a pair of stiles towards a path which led over a couple of fields and continued along the left of a wood to Lanes Foot Barn where we veered right on to a good farm track. Within 300 metres we turned left on to Monk Ing Road which in 330 metres bent sharply left. There we left the road by a signposted stile to enter the corner of some rough pasture on the right.

Leaving Heyshaw
Leaving Heyshaw

Entering rough pasture on the right off Monk Ing Road
Entering rough pasture on the right off Monk Ing Road

Village Green, Dacre Banks
Village Green, Dacre Banks

Churchyard, Dacre Banks
Churchyard, Dacre Banks

Glasshouses Lake
Glasshouses Lake

Once over the bridge we turned left on to a path that ran alongside a large artificial pond and continued along the north bank of the River Nidd, past the occasional patch of Tufted Vetch and extensive spreads of Policeman’s Helmet (Indian Balsam), to the B6265 road in Pateley Bridge where we turned left towards the car park.

Total ascent/descent 950 feet.
Ray Brown

After lunching by the village green in Dacre Banks we set off north-west along the B6451, soon turning left into Cabin Lane and immediately right into the smooth gravel track, Harewell Lane, with Dacre Bank church on our right. At SE 193628, where Harewood Lane swung left, we continued straight ahead on the track alongside the disused railway bed. At SE 188635 the track gave way to a grassy path but soon, at SE 187636, a track was resumed which led eventually to the bridge at Glasshouses.

Distinctive house at Low Fold, approaching Glasshouses
Distinctive house at Low Fold, approaching Glasshouses

River Nidd below Pateley Bridge
River Nidd below Pateley Bridge

Indian Balsam
Indian Balsam
Tufted Vetch
Tufted Vetch