Simon’s Seat via the Valley of Desolation

  • A conservation success
  • A double peak with long reaching views
  • Heather clad moorland

I have to admit to feeling a little like one of the Duke’s tenants as I climbed Simon’s Seat. There are so many rules and signposts I felt I was being watched at all times and woe betide if I stepped off the designated path. The total ban on dogs is completely unnecessary and spoiled the enjoyment of the walk for me (along with many others), which is a shame because the walk through the Valley of Desolation is splendid and the peaks of Simon’s Seat and Lord’s Seat are great little outcrops of coarse sandstone offering fun and frolics for all.

The valley of Desolation is named after a great storm in 1826 and in fact it is a beautiful valley, improved yet further by the planting of upwards of 8000 trees recently in an attempt to recreate the forests of old. The heather clad hillside is a twin of Embsay Moor to the west and is characteristic of the southern Dales and certainly offers a lovely backdrop to a walk in the correct conditions.

Recommend: Stick to the paths on this walk.

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Simon's Seat map

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OS Map: O/S 1.25,000. OL2 Yorkshire Dales South & West. Buy Map
Start Point: SD 078552. There is a car park at Cavendish Pavilion but does not open till 9.30. Parking is restricted in the valley.
Height to Climb: 357 ms (1,142 feet)
Terrain: The route is clear and well signposted. Even from Lion's Leap the route is straightforward.
Eating & Drinking: Enjoy what the Victorian's enjoyed and visit the Cavendish Pavilion. Like the Devonshire Arms a mile away it has class and will serve your tea in china rather than in a mug!
Similar Walks Nearby: Hebden Beck &Grimwith Reservoir
With views over Simon’s Seat
Addingham to Bolton Abbey
Places to Stay: