Circular walk to Buckden Pike in Wharfedale in the Yorkshire Dales
Another great walk, with simply sensational views, and again it’s a walk I’ve never ventured on before, about nine and a half miles the way we went. Please do take your map for reference, OL30, and remember that even if it’s lovely and warm in the valley bottom it may be freezing cold when you reach the top. We seemed to be going the opposite way to everyone else so you can choose which way to go round. We parked in Buckden Yorkshire Dales National Park car park, parking charge here £4.50 for the day and set off on a stunning spring morning along the Dales Way to Starbotton. What a lovely way along the river side, with tiny lambs that looked like they had just been born and wild flowers appearing everywhere on our route. After two miles you’ll come to a footbridge, cross over and take the daffodil lined track to Starbotton. We paused here for a little while just to have a drink and a snack and to contemplate the route in front of us knowing it was going to be a steep pull up the hill for a while!
Cross over the road, walk through the village until you see a finger post for Coverdale 3 miles along Starbotton Cam Road. Take this bridleway and progress up the steep bank, keep going for perhaps one and a half miles. Eventually you’ll see another finger post away on the horizon, this is your goal, but for now keep on the Cam Road until you see a gate a little way in front of you, on your right a stone structure, looks a bit like a cairn, and a small track off to your left. Take this way up to the finger post and then, as directed, to Walden Road marked one mile and an eighth keeping close to the fence at this stage. It can be very wet this way I would think so please be aware of what’s going on under foot. (If you feel the weather has been very wet it probably would be better just to go straight up Walden Road rather than following the first directions. Just keep going in Starbotton until you come to it) At Walden Road turn to go up hill, go through the gate and then turn left to follow the wall up hill. There are lots of peat hags here, I found it easier to walk quite wide from the wall but pick your own safe way up.
The summit at last and what seems to appear quite suddenly, is the memorial to the Polish RAF pilots who died here in 1942, click here to find out more. Over the ladder stile and flat ground all the way to the trig point. Continuing on you’re soon starting the descent, we stopped in the shelter of the hill here for our lunch, far too breezy on the top. After well earned sustenance we progressed down the hill, just follow the path all the way back to the car park in Buckden. If you haven’t brought lunch with you, you could always do a little detour to the White Lion Inn at Cray. Delicious food and a warm welcome but please do look on the map for directions.
As always, please do dress appropriately, wear stout footwear, take all your essential gear and enjoy! We’d love to welcome you to our Country Hideaways holiday cottages in the Yorkshire Dales, where you’ll have a chance to unwind but also to take advantage of these wonderful walks and rest peacefully and comfortable after a day out in the fresh Dales air.