Take the bus from Buckden to Grassington and walk back by following the River Wharfe to Kettlewell. From Kettlewell it climbs on to the ridge of Great Whernside amongst beautiful limestone scenery and views.
This one way walk takes in my favourite section of the Dales Way (albeit in reverse) with some lovely limestone scenery and classic Dales villages typifying the many pleasures of walking in the Yorkshire Dales. The walk is usually split in to two simple sections. First the walk keeps to the riverside of the embryonic River Wharfe between Buckden and Kettlewell. Thereafter the route climbs on to the vast shoulder of the valley side as it heads towards Grassington. From soon after Kettlewell the path sticks to the higher land.
The limestone scenery is fantastic, particularly on the second section of the walk. There are limestone pavements and escarpments, dry river valleys and the infamous Conistone Pie all competing for attention. Also just to the left when paths cross near the Conistone Dib is one the finest pavements in the area. Furthermore the walking is easy and pleasant on good paths and soft turf. Finally keep your eye out for the lime kilns on the hillside. These were used in times past to improve the sparse grasses.
Roughly half way along the walk there is a deep and steep valley on your right. This is the Conistone Dib. It is worth at least looking down the dry valley from the little gate at the top.
The 72/72R bus leaves the National Park Centre in Grassington for Buckden (Mon to Sat) regularly arriving at Buckden half an hour later.
The biggest navigational challenge on this walk is the final approach to Grassington. The official Dales Way path does a convoluted route past the Dales Dairy factory. As Grassington comes in to view take the farm lane on your left. It makes sense.
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