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I haven’t written about a ‘proper’ walk for some time, so I thought I would post about a superb walk my friend and I did awhile ago. This circular walk stared at Bolton Abbey near Ilkley in Yorkshire, and is about 7 or 8 miles long and took us about 3 hours.

Much of the walk is through open moorland and when we did it the moors had recently been burnt, whether by design or by arsonists is not clear. Often gamekeepers burn small areas of moorland to create favourable conditions for Red Grouse – then shoot them.

We started off early and the morning was clear with some frost on the tops of the hills. Up through the grounds of Bolton Abbey – eerily quiet so early, across the river Wharfe and through the Valley of Desolation (named after a catastrophic flood ripped the landscape apart 100 or so years ago). Then through a short wood and onto open moorland.

The going is easy but a gentle incline starts to make me blow a bit but we soon reached Simons Seat (named after a Druid). The views are astonishing, we could see for miles over Nidderdale and Wharfedale.

Most people turn back here but we turned towards ‘Lords Seat’ which is the next outcrop and from there we walked about 4 miles over the moors with nothing to see but scorched heather and the occasional grouse.

Suddenly we were down into farmlands and back to the car.

A superb walk!