Start the walk from Littondale to Kettlewell in the pretty village of Arncliffe. Climb over the broad shoulder of Birks for a drink in Kettlewell before returning on excellent tracks back in to Littndale.
Walking on the excellent tracks that link Littondale with Upper Wharfedale at Kettlewell I am more and more convinced that Littondale offers some of the best walking territory in the Yorkshire Dales. I climbed directly over the shoulder of Middlesmoor Pasture on an excellent grassy path (anyone would be proud if their lawn looked like this). Finally I cut under Gate Cote Scar, a fine example of weathering limestone rock, and returning from the shoulder to the River Skirface at Hawkswick.
I am not able to put my finger on any single reason why I enjoy walking in Littondale but it is surely some combination of the following; quietness, great footpath network, unspoilt landscape, smooth grassy slopes with a sprinkling of limestone scars, characteristic dry stone walls and ancient barns and a string of attractive villages and hamlets. I did notice there is a great deal of tree planting going on on the south facing slopes above Arncliffe and I hope this adds to the scenery rather than detracts by closing off the open views which is so much the attraction of the dale.
No need to drop down to Kettlewell, the track under Gate Cote Scar is excellent and offers a great perspective of the native limestone.
The outbound leg of the walk is easy to find but on the return you need to walk a few metres on the main road out of Kettlewell before a finger sign crosses a stile on to the open fellside.
Superb walk – scenery fantastic and relaxing riverside walk to end with
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