Littondale Circular

  • Views down Littondale & Wharfedale
  • Superb underfoot terrain
  • Limestone scars on the paths

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.

Recommend: No need to drop down to Kettlewell, the track under Gate Cote Scar is excellent and offers a great perspective of the native limestone.

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Arncliffe Circular map

All maps are copyright of Where2Walk ©2018

OS Map: O/S 1.25,000. OL30 Yorkshire Dales North & Central Buy Map
Start Point: SD 931718. Arncliffe. I parked near the school, cross the bridge and immediately take the footpath on the right. Well sign posted to Kettlewell
Height to Climb: 480 ms
Terrain: The Yorkshire Dales are less eroded than the the Lakes and the paths are usually better. The under foot terrain on this walk is superb, a real joy.
Eating & Drinking: The Falcon in Arncliffe is a traditional Dales pub which has been spruced up but has not lost its character. Good choice. As has the newly refurbished Queens Arms at Litton.
Similar Walks Nearby: Hidden Valleys of Wharfedale
Limestone Scenery near Comistone
Great Whernside from Kettlewell
Places to Stay:


Queen’s Arms, Litton