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Looking across the valley from High Cup Nick
Looking across the valley from High Cup Nick


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Route 960731
Dufton, Great Rundale Tarn,
High Cup Nick, Pennine Way circuit - 16km
North Pennines . . .

Map: OS Explorer OL19 Howgill Fells & Upper Eden Valley at 1:25000

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The approximate route is shown by a blue line.
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Please use my map to find the route on your own large scale walking map such as the OS Explorer series at 1:25000.
In this case it's the OS Explorer OL31 North Pennines Teesdale & Weardale at 1:25000
If you have time if you do this walk please let me know how you get on.
That would be very helpful to me to keep my information accurate and up to date.
Please note that I provide this free service to you as a fellow walker on the understanding that you walk
the route entirely at your own risk and that the information is not used for any commercial purpose.

Route 960731
Dufton, Great Rundale Tarn,
High Cup Nick, Pennine Way circuit - 16km
North Pennines . . .

Map: OS Explorer OL19 Howgill Fells & Upper Eden Valley at 1:25000

General Directions

The route starts at the public car park & toilets in Dufton village at map ref. NY 689 249. At the road in front of the parking area and toilets, turn right and walk along the road. After about 40m follow the road around a sharp left hand bend and continue for another 25m to a right hand bend in the road. Ignore the road bend and keep straight on along a farm access track bearing slightly left heading north east through the farm buildings. This track is part of the Pennine Way route. About 200m from the road there is a fork in the track. The Pennine Way route takes the left hand fork but our route takes the right hand fork.

After another 400m the track crosses Eller Beck and turns right to pass Pusgill House on the right of the track. Continue along the track following Puss Gill (a small beck) on the right and then passing around the base of Dufton Pike (481m). At the north east corner of Dufton Pike the track turns right to climb up the moor called Bluethwaite Hill and continues to climb up the valley of Rundale Beck through a area of extensive mine workings from a former age. Continue along this track for about 2.5km from the NE corner of Dufton Pike (map ref. NY704 268) to a shooting hut at map ref. NY728 283, overlooking Great Rundale Tarn.

From the shooting hut head roughly south east to the shore of the tarn about 100m away. Follow the shore of the tarn eastwards for about 200m to the outlet stream from the tarn, initially called Tarn Sike and soon becoming the Maize Beck. There is no specific path on this part of the route but from time to time there is a path following the beck. Our route follows the outlet stream from the tarn first heading eastwards and then bending round to head south. After about 2.5km the stream now called Maize Beck passes under a footbridge at map ref. NY748 270 where the Pennine Way crosses the beck. Here the beck is in a little limestone gorge and the surface of the limestone has been eroded into a pattern of duck egg sized depressions. When the beck is not in flood there is a wide limestone bank beside the deep central channel and the bank makes a fine sheltered spot for a break.

Cross the footbridge and follow the informal path across the open land heading almost due south for about 700m to the head of High Cup Nick. There is a spectacular view down into this steep sided U-shaped valley ringed by rocky cliffs. From the view at the cliff edge follow the Pennine Way keeping the cliffs of High Cup Nick on the left. The Pennine Way skirts the edge of this spectacular valley for about 1.5km before turning away from the valley to head down the hillside, past Bow Hall farm and back to the road at the edge of Dufton village at map ref. NY693248. At the road turn right to walk along the road still following the route of the Pennine Way back into the village. Where the Pennine Way joins our outward route at map ref. NY690 250, turn left away from the Pennine Way and follow the road back to the car park and toilets at the end of the walk.

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