Ingleborough from Clapham

  • The finest route up Ingleborough
  • Explore Gaping Gill and Trow Gill
  • Relaxed descent with good views

Ingleborough from Clapham via Trow Gill and Gaping Gill ending on the pleasant ridge from Little Ingleborough is my favourite route up Ingleborough. The descent over Newby Moss is straightforward and quick without being steep which is ideal as far as I am concerned. There are 3 other well used routes up Ingleborough; steep from Chapel le Dale, a track lacking variety and character from Ingleton and a long slog to Horton in Ribbledale) but the Clapham route has the greatest variety and interest. Much of the variety is due to the geology of the mountain.

The thin layer of millstone grit which caps the summit of Ingleborough gives way at about 1500′ to limestone and as a result something extraordinary happens. Streams simply disappear in to the ground reappearing up to a 1000 foot lower down on the harder bedrock of Clapdale. Gaping Gill is the finest example of this in the country with the network of caves below the surface world famous. Trow Gill on the lower slopes is a narrow gap between the rock formed when melted ice forced its way down thousands of years ago. Higher up, the highway from Little Ingleborough to the summit plateau is really enjoyable with far reaching views across the River Lune to the West and Pen y Ghent, to the East.

Ingleborough is one of the Dales 30 Mountains

Recommend:  The safest and only way to make the descent and ascent is to visit the site during May and August bank holidays when 2 of the local potholing clubs set up a winch and pulley system. I enjoy a peak though when passing…but stay well back.

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Ingleborough map


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OS Map: O/S 1/25,000. OL2 Yorkshire Dales South & West. Buy Map
Start Point: SD 746693. There is a large car park in the centre of Clapham behind the tea shop!
Height to Climb: 561ms (1,840 feet)
Terrain: Height 2372'. A very obvious ascent on a major bridleway with the section from Gaping Gill to Little Ingleborough a major example of repairing a seriously eroded path. The descent from Little Ingleborough can often be wet and difficult to follow but aim SSW and you can't go wrong
Eating & Drinking: The New Inn definitely justifies the quick descent but Croft Cafe is also a top tea shop, try and fit them both in.
Similar Walks Nearby: Norber Erratics from Austwick
Pen y Ghent from Horton in Ribblesdale
Great Coum via Gragarth
Places to Stay:


Halsteads Barn, IngletonIngle Byre Cottage, Stainforth