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Hovingham Church seen from the green opposite the village hall car park

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Route No. 494 - Saturday 5 January 2013
Hovingham, Wath Quarry, Centenary Way,
Slingsby Bank, Ebor Way circuit - 13km
Howardian Hills . . .

Route map from Ordnance Survey Open Space service.

Map: OS Explorer 300 Howardian Hills & Malton


Entrance to Hovingham Hall
Entrance to Hovingham Hall

A wild goose in the waterlogged field
A wild goose in the waterlogged field

It was a lovely crisp bright winters day and most of the photos were taken then. Today we started walking at about 10.30 from the car park along the public footpath down the side of the pub, The Malt Shovel, and out along the edge of the fields heading east.

This morning my wife and I met a group of friends at the public car park at the village hall in Hovingham, map ref. SE667756, for our regular monthly walk together. Because of the appalling wet weather there is standing water on many fields and paths so we had checked out most of the route last Tuesday, new years day.

Heading east across the fields from Hovingham
Heading east across the fields from Hovingham

Footbridge over a wide drainage ditch
Footbridge over a wide drainage ditch

Path around the edge of a field
Path around the edge of a field

Path along the field edge to Wath
Path along the field edge to Wath

Approaching the bridge over wath Beck
Approaching the bridge over wath Beck

We followed the path to the left and then around the corner of the field. At the wooded corner of the field we turned right to head south along a field edge to a bridge over Wath Beck. We followed the path out to the road at the side of the farmstead at Wath.

There was a good deal of standing water in the fields and the path was quite sodden in places with mud everywhere but at least it meant that we were getting good value from our walking boots. After just over 1km we crossed a wooden footbridge over a wide drainage ditch.

Our turning to head south to Wath
Our turning to head south to Wath

View across the fields to the Howardian Hills
View across the fields to the Howardian Hills

Approaching the farm at Wath
Approaching the farm at Wath

Gate on to the road at Wath
Gate on to the road at Wath

Start of the track climbing up past Wath quarry
Start of the track climbing up past Wath quarry

After about 100m along the road we turned left off the road at map ref. SE677750, to climb up a grassy track heading south along the western side of Wath Quarry.

We crossed the road, the B1257, and turned right to walk along the wide grass verge. The road is fairly busy with fast traffic.

The road at Wath quarry
The road, B1257, at Wath quarry

Start of the track climbing up past Wath quarry
Start of the track climbing up past Wath quarry

Near the top of the climb up past Wath quarry
Near the top of the climb up past Wath quarry

Heading for the corner of Wath Wood
Heading for the corner of Wath Wood

We followed the path around the side of the wood to a gate into the wood at map ref. SE676738. Here we turned left to walk along the Centenary Way route.

It's a pleasant track with views developing across the Vale of Pickering to the North York Moors as we climbed. At the top of the hill we came to the corner of Wath Wood.

Path around the edge of Wath Wood
Path around the edge of Wath Wood

Following the muddy route of the Centenery Way through the wood
Following the muddy route of the Centenary Way through the wood

Gate into the wood to join the Centenery Way
Gate into the wood to join the Centenary Way

Start of the first short cut
Start of the first short cut

About 300m down the hillside the track re-joins our route at the bottom of the wood at map ref. SE684732. We followed the Centenary Way which crosses the road and continues along the ridge through Fryton Wood.

We climbed up a muddy track around the edge of the wood for almost 1km to a minor road at map ref. SE684736. Here the road becomes a farm access track and if you want a shorter walk, about 9km, you can turn right to follow it.

Nearing the road from Fyton on the Centenery Way
Nearing the road from Fryton on the Centenary Way

The track at the start of the first short cut
The track at the start of the first short cut

View from the Centenery Way down the road to Fryton
View from the Centenary Way down the road to Fryton

Waiting for the stragglers
Waiting for the stragglers

The start of second short cut - turn right at the signpost
The start of second short cut - turn right at the signpost

Our route continued along the Centenary Way and just off the path, a few metres into the wood there is a large hollow where we sat on the edge for our lunch. It was quite a pretty spot in the woods and has the great advantage, from my point of view, that I could sit with my legs down the bank making it so much easier to get up again.

After another 1km we came to a place with a finger post where a bridleway crossed our path at right angles at map ref. SE693733. This bridleway is another short cut if you would like a shorter walk, about 11km. It's a pleasant wide grassy track down the bank through the woods to rejoin our route at the bottom of the slope after about 300m.

The muddy Centenery Way route through Fryton Wood
The muddy Centenary Way route through Fryton Wood

Continuing on the Centenery Way after our lunch
Continuing on the Centenary Way after our lunch

Our lunch stop overlooking a pleasant hollow in the wood
Our lunch stop overlooking a pleasant hollow in the wood

Path on the edge of Slingsby Bank Wood
Path on the edge of Slingsby Bank Wood

The road at Slingsby Bank
The road at Slingsby Bank

The avenue leads past Castle Howard about 3km away to the south. We walked about 200m down the bank through the trees at the side of the road and then turned right again to follow a path across the fields along the bottom edge of the woods.

After our lunch break we we continued along the path through Slingsby Bank Wood to the road at map ref. SE704732 where we turned right to leave the Centenary Way.The road is a long straight avenue of lime trees.

Path heading for Slingsby Bank
Path heading for Slingsby Bank

Heading south along the avenue of lime trees
Heading south along the avenue of lime trees

Start of the path along the bottom of Slingsby Bank Wood
Start of the path along the bottom of Slingsby Bank Wood

Looking up the second short cut from the main route
Looking up the second short cut from the main route

About 200m further on the track bends left and then right to swing out from the edge of the field and follow the line shown on the map.

There is a good track at the edge of the fields next to the wood (not out in the field as shown on the map). After about 1.3km we passed the end of the grassy track that can be used to reduce the walk to 11km.

Path along the bottom of Slingsby Bank Wood
Path along the bottom of Slingsby Bank Wood

Path along the field edge at the bottom of the woods
Path along the field edge at the bottom of the woods

Path along the field edge at the bottom of the woods
Path along the field edge at the bottom of the woods

The path swings out from the edge of the wood and continues between the fields
The path swings out from the edge of the wood and continues between the fields

Looking back to our track across the fields on the right of the photo
Looking back to our track across the fields on the right of the photo

Bridleway along a track between the fields
Bridleway along a track between the fields

Muddy area at a midden with a tree ahead at our turn
Muddy area at a midden with a tree ahead at our turn

Gate to a track at the bottom of the bank
Gate to a track at the bottom of the bank

There was a large midden and a tree by the path here. The bridleway track continues straight on but our route bore left to follow another bridleway down the hillside to a track in the corner of the field at map ref. SE677732. We followed this track past a pretty pond on our right and then turned right to join the Ebor Way route.

After another kilometer we came to a track where the first short cut rejoins our route at map ref. SE684732. Here we turned left to walk along the farm access track for about 200m. There we turned right and walked along a bridleway track between the fields for about 400m.

Bridleway along a track between the fields
Bridleway along a track between the fields

Our turn off the track to head down the bank
Our turn off the track to head down the bank

The track passes a pretty pond
The track passes a pretty pond

A pretty pond by the track where we join the Ebor Way route
A pretty pond by the track where we join the Ebor Way route

Here we joined the Ebor Way route
Here we joined the Ebor Way route

Our right turn along the Ebor Way by the stream
Our right turn along the Ebor Way by the stream

The Ebor Way by the stream
The Ebor Way by the stream

Oak tree on the edge of South Wood
Oak tree on the edge of South Wood

Then the path turned away from the stream to go around the edge of a field to a pedestrian gate at map ref. SE671737. We went through the gate to a footbridge over a stream. The land was completely water logged here but our boots got us through and we walked up a grassy track past a lovely oak tree on our right to a gate into South Wood.

We followed the Ebor Way for about 250m by a stream at the edge of a field next to a wood to a gate leading on to a farm access track at map ref. SE674733. Here we turned right off the farm track to walk along a narrow path beside a stream still following the Ebor Way. We followed the path by the stream for about 500m.

Following the Ebor Way route
Following the Ebor Way route

The Ebor Way by the stream
The Ebor Way by the stream

Ebor Way route at map ref. SE671737
Ebor Way route at map ref. SE671737

Ebor Way route entering South Wood
Ebor Way route entering South Wood

Track up through South Wood along the Ebor Way
Track up through South Wood along the Ebor Way

Riders on the Ebor Way track from Hovingham
Riders on the Ebor Way track from Hovingham

The Ebor Way route along a track dropping down to Hovingham
The Ebor Way route along a track dropping down to Hovingham

Ebor Way route heading for Hovingham
Ebor Way route heading for Hovingham

Ebor Way route heading for Hovingham
Ebor Way route heading for Hovingham

We walked along the road back into the village and the end of our walk. The whole route had been about 13km and we all called at the bakery cafe by the ford in the village for a coffee and a cake before heading for home.

We continued to follow the Ebor Way on a good track up through the wood. After almost 700m we cam to the edge of the wood at map ref. SE666743. The Ebor Way route led us along a long straight track between the fields for about 1km to the road on the southern edge of Hovingham.

Ebor Way route heading for Hovingham
Ebor Way route heading for Hovingham

Returning to Hovingham at the end of the walk
Returning to Hovingham at the end of the walk

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