I think it’s becoming quite a regular walk from Cover Bridge for me, twice in two weeks! But this time I was leading and so thought it would make a change to go in a clockwise direction rather than the usual anticlockwise direction. It always puts a different perspective to go the ‘other way round’, you could even say it was a different walk. With all the walking groups I’ve walked with over the years not once have we done it clockwise. This walk is just over ten miles, no long, steep hills and quite easy going with an extension to High Ellington. Please as always plan your route beforehand taking your map with you and wear appropriate clothing and footwear and essential on such a long walk, drinks and food.
So on a good January morning, after parking at Cover Bridge, there is a large space opposite the pub, we set off to the left over Ulshaw Bridge and turned right at the junction over the bridge. Walk along here until the sharp bend to the left but keep straight on along the track to Danby Low Mill and Danby Hall. The path is well marked and you will eventually come out at Thornton Steward. Don’t forget to take a look at St Oswald’s as you come to the wood before the village which is recorded in the Domesday Book and believed to be the oldest church in Wensleydale. Stop at the village hall if you wish, it’s usually open, and make a ‘cuppa’, there is a loo too, donations most welcome. Walk through the village to the telephone box and road junction and follow the finger post to the right. Continue on down the lane and past the houses and then cross open fields in the direction of Woodhouse. Negotiate the farm and continue on your way to Kilgram Bridge.
Over the bridge, pass Kilgram Grange and take the footpath straight in front of you as the road sweeps to the right, there is a finger post, continue straight through the field in the direction of Ramshaw. At Ramshaw follow the signs to the left along Hazel Lane. Look to your map to pass the two woods even though the map says it’s a track in parts there is no clue although the way is well signposted in appropriate places. You will come out onto what looks like the driveway to Eelmire. Follow the single track road to come out at Appletree House and the A6108. Turn left and walk along the road side, there is a good verge, until you come to a sort of layby on the right. From here you will see a little lane going off to the right, make you way up here to come out on Hargill Bank in High Ellington. Turn right up the hill to the junction then walk with the little green on your left, it’s quite a way. Keep an eye out for the post box in the wall on your right. Once here there is footpath in front of you, which always seems to be muddy, continue the end to the farm track. Turn right here, walk along until the track curves to left, leave the track and take the metal gate in front of you. Here the path becomes a little elusive but it is there.
Make your way down the field and bear off towards the wood, Ellington Firth. There is a metal hand gate in the fence, just persevere and you will find it. Through the gate and walk diagonally across the field to the wood. Turn left once in the wood and follow the path through the trees coming out into open fields again. Straight on up the mound to the fence, turn right, you will soon see a ladder stile and pick up the Six Dales Trail. Out onto the A6108, call in for an ice cream at Brymor at High Jervaulx for a well earned rest if you wish! Now please be very careful as you need to walk down the hill, Masham Bank, to the gates into Jervaulx Park, there is no verge here. Once into the park follow the well worn track to the abbey, coming out onto the A6108 again. Turn right, follow the road past the buildings and along to the bridge. At the bridge, turn right, the finger post tells us it is one and three quarter miles to Cover Bridge! Now it’s just a matter of following the path, a lovely walk along the river bank, again coming out onto the A6108. Turn right again, over the bridge, and hey you’re back at the car! A warm welcome always awaits at the pub, on a chilly day you can guarantee a fire and hot food, which is precisely what we intended to partake of!
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Written By Nadine Bell