Our walking group decided to walk from Fairhurst’s at Berry’s in Swinithwaite. The walk was about four miles in total and easy going but the weather was not good, not good at all when we were getting ready. I really didn’t want to set off but was persuaded, as I would be, and so pleased I was as the afternoon cleared out and we had a stunning walk. Views all round, of the river, Bolton Castle, up and down Wensleydale, PenHill, amazing really. Although a short walk please do plan your route and take a map with you. Always wear appropriate clothing and footwear and take a drink and snacks.
Park in the bottom car park at Berry’s and walk down Back Lane, the concrete track past the farm buildings, keep on going down the hill to New Wood until the concrete runs out, do not go through the bottom gateway. Just back from here is a gate off to the left, proceed through here and walk down the fields, a permissible footpath, until you come to the wood in front of you and a large ladder stile in the corner on the right. Over here with care and follow the path more or less keeping near the wall on your left but leaving the wall eventually to take you up hill but still going in a easterly direction through Wanlass Park until you come to a junction and signpost for West Witton 1 mile.
Follow the sign looking out for a stile on your left, quite difficult to spot and if you miss it don’t worry there is a gate to use, you need to be going in the direction of High Wanlass on the rise to the east. Once at the farm go through the farm gate and off to the right up the farm track, Flats Lane. St Bartholomew's Church will come into view, continue up the hill. Take a peek in the church yard and church if open! Once onto the main road, the A684, turn right and walk in a westerly direction, look out for the commemorative seat, pass the Wensleydale Heifer, go over the bridge and then look out for a finger post on the right. Turn down here, a narrow little lane through the houses, which will bring you out into open fields. Through the hand gate and head for the stile in front of you, over the stile, be aware of the stream on the other side, it is passable with care, and then head for stile in the far right hand corner of the field. Negotiate the stile and again turn right, through the gate and follow the track/path, keep going to New Wood. Here cross over the little stream, through the gate and you’re back at the end of the concrete path at the beginning of the walk. Up the hill and time to enjoy a cuppa and something delicious to eat at Fairhurst’s at Berry’s!
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Written By Nadine Bell