Miles
8

Austwick and Crummackdale

D041

If I was ever asked to summarise the Dales landscape at its best then I would describe the walk through Austwick and Crummackdale. The view from the limestone pavement on Long Scar reveals a vast panorama starting from the summit of Ingleborough to the north west. From here turn north east through the uniform Moughton Scars with Pen-y-Ghent beyond. Pen-y-Ghent is seen at its best here.

The Walk

The walk described starts with a short pull to a series of large boulders known as the Norber Erratics. An erratic translates as ‘a boulder in the wrong place’. You would expect that the erratics are limestone in origin, being in the midst of spectacular limestone scenery. However they are not. The boulders are of Silurian stone and were left when the glaciers retreated in the last Ice Age, they may have been transported 10s of miles. It is quite possible to tell which rock type is which by the colour of the moss which grows on it; the older Silurian sandstone has green moss whilst the newer limestone grows white.

Limestone

The limestone scenery is all encompassing in Austwick and Crummackdale. Therefore the exposed pavements and scars of white rock are everywhere, none better than the crossing over Moughton Scars. If there is a better limestone pavement in England I have not seen it.

The return via Wharfe tends to be taken quickly due to the dry stone walls of this Green Lane. However the track is good and Wharfe another near perfect Dales hamlet.  There is a very popular picnicking spot before Wharfe and a pleasant spot to linger, further up the valley, where the path crosses Austwick Beck.

Recommend

If you need to shorten the Austwick and Crummackdale walk drop down to the farm at Crummack after the Norber Erratics. Return to Austwick via the Pennine Bridleway .

Navigation Tips

Over Norber and the erratics the path is intermittent unless you stick to the sheep track on the eastern edge. However it is straightforward to leave the track and wander amongst the boulders and stick to the crest. This has good Ingleborough views. Also stick close to the path overlooking the scar on Moughton Scars.

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OS Map: O/S 1/25,000. OL2 Yorkshire Dales South & West Buy Map
Start Point: SD 767684. Park roadside in Austwick. The walk starts by taking you through Town Head and a left on to Thwaite Lane and first stile on to the hillside.
Height to Climb: 340 ms (1,115 feet)
Terrain: Limestone can be superb to walk on in dry conditions but slippy when wet. There is a sheep track that sticks to the east of norber in wet conditions.
Eating & Drinking: There is no pretty tea shop in Austwick but a pleasant pub called the Game Cock Inn. A pint of Thwaites in the sun here is a pleasant way to finish the walk.
Similar Walks Nearby: Limestone hills above Feizor
Historic Villages near Settle
Ingleborough via Gaping Gill
Places to Stay: