white horse logo

Flying Scotsman on the North York Moors Railway (NYMR) at Darnholm hauling the 12.30 from Grosmont
Flying Scotsman on the North York Moors Railway (NYMR) at Darnholm hauling the 12.30 from Grosmont

Menu:

National Parks

| 2001 walks | 2002 walks | 2003 walks | 2004 walks |
| 2005 walks | 2006 walks | 2007 walks | 2008 walks |
| 2009 walks | 2010 walks | 2011 walks | 2012 walks |
| 2013 walks | 2014 walks | 2015 walks | 2016 walks |
| 2017 walks | 1993-2000 library | Find a Route |
| A few Routes to print out | Request a Route... |

Route No. 611 - Wednesday 16 March 2016
Moorgates, Partridge Hill, Goathland Station,
Hollin Garth, Esk Valley, Rail Trail circuit - 15km
North York Moors . . .

Route map from Ordnance Survey Open Space service.

Map: OS Explorer OL27 North York Moors Eastern area

This is another lovely route contributed by my friend Ray Brown. Thanks Ray, just keep them coming!


Note: You can see details of the 'Rail Trail' as part of route no 406 and as part of route 291 and there is an information leaflet available at the NYMR station bookshops.

Memorial stone at Moorgates
Memorial stone at Moorgates

Birchwood farm
Birchwood farm

Passing Birchwood farm
Passing Birchwood farm

As the track climbs towards Birchwood farm it loses its surface. We left the track to skirt past the farm on its right using a grassy path, winding our way down towards a large steel sheep shed near stepping stones across a burn.

Ray Brown wrote:- The apparent end of a long wet winter and the recent resurrection of the Flying Scotsman locomotive prompted our conception of this walk. We parked off road on the grass verge east of Moorgates at SE848994 and took the single track, initially metalled, running north from SE847993. A memorial stone on the right euphemistically declares that John Calvert of Goathland "fell asleep" there in 1907, aged 77 (my present age!).

Alas, poor Yorick (sheep jaw at Birchwood)
Alas, poor Yorick (sheep jaw at Birchwood)

Descent to stepping stones and a large steel sheep shed ahead
Descent to stepping stones and a large steel sheep shed ahead

Abbot's Bridge
Abbot's Bridge

Moors Road crossing
Moors Road crossing

The lane leads on to the Gow Wath bank moors road with a staggered (left-then-right) crossing. Passing to the left of the short terrace of houses we followed a path down to Goathland station.

Once across the burn, the route swings left and uphill to Partridge Hill farm; there we joined the farm access track which later drops down to Abbot's Bridge and gains a metalled surface.

Goathland from above Goathland House
Goathland from above Goathland House

Path towards Goathland station
Path towards Goathland station

Descent to Goathland station
Descent to Goathland station

Leaving Mill Scar
Leaving Mill Scar

Flying Scotsman at Darnholm hauling the 12.30 from Grosmont
Flying Scotsman at Darnholm hauling the 12.30 from Grosmont

Reaching Darnholme Lane
Reaching Darnholme Lane

The climb from Darnholme Lane
The climb from Darnholme Lane

At the top the path turns left over a stile to join a farm track to the nearby house and kennels. We continued to the right of the kennels

Without crossing the line, we continued north by climbing the path that runs above the railway along Mill Scar before dropping steeply towards a footbridge preceding Darnholme Lane where we turned right for 50 metres.

Steep descent to Darnholme Lane
Steep descent to Darnholme Lane

Darnholme Lane
Darnholme Lane

Then a footpath over another footbridge on the left leads steeply up to the moor.

Following the left turn above Darnholm
Following the left turn above Darnholm


Passing the kennels above Darnholm

Staying high around Hawthorn Hill farmland
Staying high around Hawthorn Hill farmland

Descending to Hollin Garth
Descending to Hollin Garth


Quagmire between Hollin Garth and Green End

Shortly, over the brow of the hill, we could see Hollin Garth farm by the road below. Turning right on to the road we soon took the bridleway on the left. The route to Green End farm was still a quagmire following the wet winter but the way was clearly marked with Bridleway signs.

From the kennels we followed the path with a farm wall on our right and rejecting paths on the left both at NZ 8316 0234 and NZ 8285 0249 which would have taken us down towards Beck Hole. Instead we stayed on the high path, skirting around the land of Hawthorn Hill farm and veering towards the north and to NZ 8281 0257.


Bridleway from Hollin Garth

Approaching Green End farmyard
Approaching Green End farmyard

Entering a muddy path beyond Green End farm
Entering a muddy path beyond Green End farm

Signpost where we headed towards the Esk Valley
Signpost where we headed towards the Esk Valley

The bridleway then drops down over grassland towards the NYMR. However its route has been changed in recent years and swings right before passing under the railway and then continues via a new footbridge over the Murk Esk river to form a T junction with the rail trail where we turned left.

After passing through Green End farmyard the bridleway briefly turns left on to a track before swinging right. There followed 200 metres of mud bath, at times almost impenetrable, again a consequence of unusually excessive winter rainfall. These conditions relented only at the signpost where the Grosmont footpath forks off from the Esk Valley bridleway.

Footbridge over Murk Esk before Esk Valley
Footbridge over Murk Esk before Esk Valley

Rail trail footbridge east of Esk Valley
Rail trail footbridge east of Esk Valley

Rail trail between Esk Valley and Beck Hole
Rail trail between Esk Valley and Beck Hole

Railtrail footbridge over Ellerbeck at Beck Hole
Rail trail footbridge over Ellerbeck at Beck Hole

Rail trail incline
Rail trail incline

Only in Goathland does the walker briefly have to leave this pre-1865 route of the railway.

Our return route to Moorgates was simply to follow the well-known rail trail which has three fine footbridges across the Murk Esk and another over the Eller Beck.

Rail Trail footbridge over Murk Esk near Beck Hole
Rail trail footbridge over Murk Esk near Beck Hole

Incline Cottage at Beck Foot
Incline Cottage at Beck Foot

Incline summit
Incline summit

Flying Scotsman at Goathland with the 15.30 from Grosmont
Flying Scotsman at Goathland with the 15.30 from Grosmont

Water troughs, Goathland car park
Water troughs, Goathland car park

Heartbeat police car
Heartbeat police car

In either case, on reaching the main road, the walker needs to cross towards the Goathland Hotel (opposite the village garage with its historical Ford Anglia police car) in order to resume the rail trail on the right of the Goathland Hotel.

In Goathland beyond the summit of the famous incline, we had the option of turning left for 30 metres on the footpath through Mill Green Way or right into the public car park and toilets

Goathland village
Goathland village


Resume Rail Trail

Rail trail between Goathland and Moorgates
Rail trail between Goathland and Moorgates

Rail trail end at Moorgates
Rail trail end at Moorgates

When walking conditions are no longer soggy in the vicinity of Green End the walk will be even better. The "Flying Scotsman" was a spectacular sell-out - well done NYMR.
Ray Brown

We found this final straight leg of the rail trail less interesting than the earlier and popular Goathland-Beck Hole-Grosmont section but our overall route can be recommended.

Moorgates old railway bridge
Moorgates old railway bridge

Moorgates NYMR bridge
Moorgates NYMR bridge

Top of Page