On what turned out to be the perfect January day we set off from Hawes in a north westerly direction. A beautiful circular walk, just over ten miles with a good climb from Thwaite bridge. We saw a train going over Ribblehead Viaduct in the distance to the west and to the east at one point Wether Fell, Addlebrough and Penhill were all visible looking down Wensleydale, a total treat. Again, I cannot stress enough to plan your route, take your map for guidance, a compass is always a good companion, take water etc and snacks and always wear suitable clothing and good footwear. Stay safe but most of all enjoy!

With this walk I thought perhaps I should try and put map references at strategic points along the route for you to be guided by, so wish me luck! (Just need to make sure I’m doing them right with my husband first though!)

Easy parking in the town and plenty of shops if you need anything. Make your way along the A684 out of Hawes, after a few yards there is Ashes, a large house on the righthand side of the road, (386677,490029) take the track opposite here. Follow to a farm and bear right following the footpath signs. Continue through fields and over stiles until you reach the Appersett Viaduct. Turn right onto the singletrack road and walk down into Appersett. Once in Appersett and back onto the A684, left and over the bridge and take the footpath on the left to follow the wall down to New Bridge, (385766,490954) do not cross over the bridge but turn left to follow the river bank going through woods and over little streams, so pretty. Keep going to Mossdale Head, over Mossdale Gill and onto Thwaite Bridge (382596,492241). You’re back on the A684 again. Cross over the road, over the little bridge and bear right to follow the bridleway. Continue up the hill, a stony pathway, over a stile and into moorland. Climb the hill to the point of the little wood on the right, continue north east, again picking up the footpath signs and stiles. These eventually take you down into Cotterdale and to the road. Cross over, following the footpath, be careful of the stream in the lower field, find the best place to cross, and keep going until you nearly come into Cotterdale village. Take the stile on the right, a funny thing, (383271,493816) over the little bridge, turn immediately right and after a few yards there should be a stile into the fields. We missed this, too much talking, and went through the gate in the next field. Pass by the barn in the field, you’ll see a stile and little bridge, over here and continue up the hill to the next level. Looking on your map you’ll see this eventually joins up with the Pennine Way (384703,493233). Once on the Pennine Way, proceed downhill into Hardrow. Left onto the road, over the bridge and immediately turn right to take the footpath downhill. It’s easy from here, there’s a flagged path to follow, these do peter out but at the sign post that gives you two options, take the easterly direction to come out on to Burnt Acres Road. From here turn right and continue along the road. Over the bridge and a little further you will see a stile with a flagged footpath to follow, this will take you back into Hawes.

We went to The Board Inn, hadn’t been in there for years, there was a welcoming fire and the soup and sandwiches were good too!