Simon’s Seat 02-05-2018 – Leader Arnold

Simon’s Seat 02-05-2018 – Leader Arnold

Days definitely do not come any better than this: the forecast rain did not fall upon us, we had a brilliant turnout of 25, we all got parked up at Barden Bridge, the views in the sunshine were superb, we saw some bluebells, we were well looked after at the Strid Wood Café, and Liverpool only lost 4-2, so we are in the Champions’ League final on May 26!!!

The walk started gently enough as we headed north along the River Wharfe on the Dales Way for a bit over a mile before turning onto Howgill Lane and north again to our banana break at Eastwood Head.  Shortly after, we turned east off the road near Dalehead Farm and began the 900 feet, three-quarters of a mile climb up to Simon’s Seat, the highest point of the walk at 475 m (1540 ft).  Today the rocky path was relatively dry, and we very much took our time on the way up, stopping frequently to admire the wonderful panoramic views across the valley to Burnsall Fell and Barden Moor.  At the summit we took our lunch, though I managed to drop most of mine into some muddy water!  Diana came to my rescue with an energy bar that she keeps in her bag for emergencies.  I have to say that Roger’s pictures on the way up and at the summit were breathtaking; it was a shame to delete any of them.

After lunch we descended on the newly-improved and recommended (to reduce erosion) path south from the summit.  This was the bit that had not been recced, so I overshot by about 200 yards at a junction, and was promptly pilloried for it – but I didn’t care.  We trogged upwards a bit from this junction to meet the old route down, where we encountered a painted pebble, which are now becoming popular for children to find.  We carried on down through the woods, including the Valley of Desolation – now not desolate at all – and then diverted onto a lovely path along Sheepshaw Beck and down through the verdant Bolton Abbey estate.

Soon we were back at the Wharfe, following a permissive estate path through a much softer landscape, including a broad sweep of pale bluebells.  The views down to the narrow gorge that is The Strid were spectacular, and then we were back at the cars after – though I say it as shouldn’t – a really lovely and varied walk in God’s own country (I put that in for Derek, who unfortunately missed the walk today!).  Thanks to all for coming, for sharing cars more than usual, and for not moaning about the earlier start.  Thanks also to Glyn for back marking, and – once again – to Roger for some memorable pictures.

Write up Arnold, pics Roger P.  Appended here are the route stats and profile.

If you wish to see a static view of the pics all in one go, then click here.

There is a link to the slideshow here.  You will need to click within the black page that opens up to see the show.


  1. Derek

    Congratulations Arnold – looks like you all had a great day, and yes, I was sorry to miss it.

  2. Graeme Adlum

    Fabulous walk – thank you Arnold.

    Great photos. Well done Roger.

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