Western Yorkshire Dales Guided Walking Tour 2023

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8 Days / 7 Nights
Availability : April to September
Start: Thorns Hall, Sedbergh, Cumbria, England
End: Thorns Hall, Sedbergh, Cumbria, England
Western Yorkshire Dales Guided Walking Tour: 7 nights based at Thorns Hall, Sedbergh, Cumbria

Contact DHTour at 1-888-597-3519 or 905-639-9954 or dhtour@dhtour.ca to book.

Snuggled between the much-loved Lake District and the charming Yorkshire Dales lies the hidden beauty of the Howgill Fells. This corner of the Yorkshire Dales National Park offers high peaks, rugged dales, quaint market towns and sweeping panoramas, all of which can be enjoyed on our Guided Walking holidays.

Tour Details

Highlights:

  • Head out on guided walks to discover the varied beauty of the Yorkshire Dales on foot
  • Let an experienced leader bring classic routes and offbeat areas to life
  • Visit charming Dales villages
  • Look out for wildlife, find secret corners and learn about the Dales’ history
  • Evenings in our country house where you share a drink and re-live the day’s adventures

Pick Up Location & TIme

Thorns Hall, Cautley Road, Sedbergh, Cumbria, LA10 5LE (Google Map)
4:00pm – You’re welcome to check into the country house hotel from 4pm onwards.

Drop off Location & Time

Enjoy a leisurely breakfast before making your way onward.

Price Includes

  • High quality en-suite upgraded accommodation at Thorns Hall
  • Excellent food in our country house, full board (B,L,D daily)
  • The services of our knowledgeable leader, ensuring you get the most from your holiday
  • 5 days guided walking + 1 free day
  • Choice of up to three guided walks each walking day
  • Transport to and from the walks
  • Use of our comprehensive Discovery Point

Meals

  • 7 breakfasts
  • 6 lunches
  • 7 dinners
  • 1 tea

Price Excludes

  • Airfare
  • Transfers
  • Pre / Post hotel nights
  • Travel to/from the Country Hotel (The nearest railway station is Oxenholme)
  • Admissions (please allow approx. £10 per day for entrances)
  • Driver / Tour Leader gratuity is at your discretion
  • Travel Insurance
What to Expect
Western Yorkshire Dales Guided Walking Tour Walking Grade: 2, 3 & 4.

Enjoy a full day’s walking with fellow guests and leave all the planning and navigation to us; it’s what we do best. Nobody knows the UK’s best places to walk like us. Our knowledgeable leaders make sure you’re never short of the inside story on local features, viewpoints and places of interest.

  • Unpack once
  • Accommodation at a country house hotel
  • Full Board Meals – from dinner on arrival day to breakfast on departure day
  • Knowledgeable leader
  • Choice of up to 3 walks per walking day with required transport

On our Guided Walking holidays, we believe that choice is key. Our walks descriptions will help you choose according to your interests and fitness. The walks are grouped together with care by local experts to give the best experience. 

What to Bring

“There’s no such thing as bad weather, just the wrong type of clothing!” goes the adage. Come prepared for all eventualities and you’ll walk in comfort as well as safety. Britain’s famous for its changeable weather, so here’s our advice on what to wear and bring.

Essentials

  • Waterproof walking boots providing ankle support and good grip.
  • A waterproof jacket and over-trousers
  • Gloves and a warm hat (it can be chilly at any time of the year)
  • Rucksack
  • Water bottle (at least 1 litre capacity)
  • A small torch (everywhere in winter, year round in mountains)
  • Sun hat and sunscreen
    Denim jeans and waterproof capes are not suitable on any walks.

Recommended

  • Several layers of clothing, which can be added or removed
  • Specialist walking socks to avoid blisters.
  • A first aid kit inc plasters– your leader’s first aid kit doesn’t contain any medication
  • Sit mat (insulated pad to sit on when you stop for a break)

You might also want

  • Walking poles, particularly useful for descents.
  • Insect repellent
  • Flask for hot drinks
  • Rigid lunch box
  • Gaiters
  • Blister kit (eg Compeed) just in case
  • Waterproof rucksack liner
Version 1 Itinerary

Day 1Arrival Day

You’re welcome to check in from 4pm onwards. Enjoy a complimentary cream tea on arrival.

Accommodation: Thorns Hall (D, T)

Day 2The Howgill Fells and Sedbergh

Option 1 – Rawthey Valley

Distance: 7 miles (11.5km)

Ascent: 750 feet (220m)

In summary: Explore the green valleys around Sedbergh on this circular walk. We’ll head through the fields into Garsdale and then return beside the Clough River and River Rawthey. 

Highlight: Towards the end of the walk we’ll pass Farfield Mill. This lovingly restored Victorian woollen mill that now hosts a heritage centre.

Option 2 – Over the Howgills

Distance: 9 miles (14.5km) 

Ascent: 1,850 feet (580m)

In summary: This circular walk from Sedbergh ascends to the summit of Arant Haw in the Howgill Fells. We then descend over the Nab to join the Dales Way and return to Sedbergh passing the Brigflatts Quaker Meeting House and the River Rawthey. 

Highlight: An opportunity to get high onto the Howgill Fells; a beautiful upland area of rolling grassy hills. 

Option 3 – The Calf

Distance: 10.5miles (17km) 

Ascent: 2750 feet (840m) 

In summary: After a valley walk along the Rawthey Valley we’ll ascend steeply past the Cautley Spout waterfall onto the Howgill Fells. We’ll head to The Calf, the highest point of the Howgills, before a glorious descent along the ridge to Sedbergh. 

Highlight: The classic Howgills walk where you’ll get to experience this stunning landscape and soak up the views of the Yorkshire Dales and the Lake District. 

Accommodation: Thorns Hall (B, L, D)

Day 3Upper Swaledale

Option 1 – Keld and Muker

Distance: 7 miles (11.5km) 

Ascent: 950 feet (300m)

In SummaryDiscover the delightful upper reaches of Swaledale. We’ll follow the valley from Thwaite to Keld, returning past the waterfall of East Gill Force and the centuries-old lead mine at Crackpot Hall. 

HighlightThe small villages of Keld and Muker have a timeless quality with their traditional farms and historic churches.

Option 2 – Upper Swaledale

Distance: 7½ miles (12.5km)

Ascent: 1,450 feet (440m)

In SummaryWalk over Black Hill between Thwaite and Keld, then follow the upper Swale valley to Muker, finishing along a spectacular terrace above the river. 

HighlightThe upper reaches of Swaledale are particularly attractive with tranquil scenery and charming sleepy villages.

Option 3 – Great Shunner Fell

Distance: 11 miles (17.5km) 

Ascent: 1,800 feet (560m) 

In SummaryCross the hills from Wensleydale to Swaledale. Our highest point is the summit of Great Shunner Fell, from where we descend following the Pennine Way to the village of Muker. 

HighlightChoose a clear day and you’ll be rewarded with a panoramic view over the Yorkshire Dales to the Lake District fells in the distance.

Accommodation: Thorns Hall (B, L, D)

Day 4Free day

A free day for you to explore the local area or to relax in the Country House. Our Discovery Points help you make the most out of your free day. There’s plenty of maps and a selection of the best local walking routes, as well as weather forecasts and public transport options – plus details about other places to visit.

Accommodation: Thorns Hall (B, L, D)

Day 5Rivers Rawthey and Dent with Aye Gill Pike

Option 1 – Shadow of the Howgills

Distance: 6 miles (10km)

Ascent: 700 feet (220m)

In summary: The walk starts by crossing a patchwork of fields beneath the Howgills, before more fields south of the River Rawthey. This is followed by a good path on the open fell and a short section of The Dales Way back to Sedbergh.

Highlight: A walk which offers the prospect of great views of the Howgills throughout.

Option 2 – Circuit to Dentdale

Distance: 8.5 miles (13.5km)

Ascent: 950 feet (300m)

In summary: The walk goes over the modest Frostrow Fells before descending to delightful Dentdale, and a section beside the River Dee. Part of The Dales Way is now joined for the return to Sedbergh.

Highlight: The peace and tranquility of Dentdale.

Option 3 – Aye Gill Pike

Distance: 11 miles (17.5km)

Ascent: 1,750 feet (540m)

In summary: A well-graded ascent, albeit with the prospect of some boggy sections, leads to the summit of Aye Gill Pike. The descent is into Garsdale, before walking beside the Rivers Clough & Rawthey back to Thorns Hall.

Highlight: The descent affords fantastic views towards the Howgills and beyond.

Accommodation: Thorns Hall (B, L, D)

Day 6Smardale and Ravenstonedale

Option 1 – Smardale Gill

Distance: 7 miles (11km) 

Ascent: 900 feet (280m) 

In SummaryHead over Smardale Fell to Smardale Hall, then along the valley side and across the viaduct back to Ravenstonedale. 

HighlightThe valley of Smardale Gill is an unexpected delight crowned by the majestic viaduct of the old Darlington to Tebay railway.

Option 2 – Potts Valley & Smardale

Distance: 9½ miles (15km) 

Ascent: 1,350 feet (400m) 

In SummaryA circular walk heading into Potts valley to Crosby Garrett returning via Smardale Gill and crossing the impressive grade 2 listed viaduct.

HighlightSmardale Gill is a National Nature Reserve; a classic limestone habitat that is rich with butterflies, wild flowers and birds. 

Option 3 – Wild Boar Fell

Distance: 11 miles (18km) 

Ascent: 1,850 feet (560m)

In SummaryAscend to the high moorland summits of Swarth Fell and Wild Boar Fell, before crossing a patchwork of fields to the village of Ravenstonedale. 

HighlightThis is a real ‘away from it all’ walk through beautiful upland scenery.

Accommodation: Thorns Hall (B, L, D)

Day 7Slopes of Baugh Fell and Howgills

Option 1 – Dowbiggin and Hebblethwaite

Distance: 6.5 miles (11km)

Ascent: 700 feet (220m)

In summary: We start by walking on the banks of the Rivers Rawthey & Clough, and on to Hebblethwaite Hall. Then it is back to Straight Bridge and over the fields to Thorns Hall.

Highlight: Great riverside walking and a descent into Hebblethwaite Hall Gill.

Option 2 – River Rawthey (North)

Distance:  8.5 miles (13.5km)

Ascent: 1050 feet (320m)

In summary: The walk heads NE up the Rawthey Valley, before crossing the river and the wilder lower slopes of West Baugh Fell. The return is across Hebblethwaite Hall Gill and Straight Bridge to Thorns Hall.

Highlight: Great views of Baugh Fell and The Howgills.

Option 3 – White Fell Head and the Calf

Distance: 10.5 miles (16.5km)

Ascent: 2900 feet (880m)

In summary: The west side of the Howgills are accessed in part along the Lune Valley Roman Road. A steep ascent follows to White Fell Head & The Calf, with an interesting return via Crook.

Highlight: A day which should heighten the appreciation of the Howgills.

Accommodation: Thorns Hall (B, L, D)

Day 8Departure Day

Enjoy a leisurely breakfast before making your way home. (B)

Version 2 Itinerary

Day 1Arrival Day

You’re welcome to check in from 4pm onwards.

Accommodation: Thorns Hall (D)

Day 2The Howgill Fells and the Lune Valley

Option 1 – Dales Way

Distance: 7 miles (11.5km) 

Ascent: 500 feet (160m) 

In SummaryA delightful walk alongside the River Lune following the Dales Way. We’ll then cross the fields to Brigflatts church and Sedbergh. 

HighlightDiscover the attractive and tranquil scenery of the Lune Valley. Our walk ends back in Sedbergh where you might like to visit one of the historic pubs or explore the town’s celebrated bookshops.

Option 2 – Above the Lune Valley

Distance: 9½ miles (15.5km) 

Ascent: 650 feet (200m) 

In SummaryWalk above the Lune Valley and visit Fox’s Pulpit. Having descended to the River Lune we’ll return to Sedbergh along the Dales Way beside the River Rawthey. 

HighlightFox’s Pulpit is a rocky outcrop where George Fox, the founder of the Quakers preached. From here there’s a beautiful view across the valley to the Howgill Fells.

Option 3 – Howgill Traverse

Distance: 9 miles (14.5km) 

Ascent: 2,150 feet (660m) 

In SummaryA fantastic north to south traverse across the Howgill Fells. Walking high in the hills for most of the day we’ll follow the undulating ridge over Hazelgill Knott to the summit of The Calf, then continue onwards along the ridge to Sedbergh. 

HighlightThe Calf is the highest point in the Howgills and enjoys a great view over the Yorkshire Dales and the Lake District mountains.

Accommodation: Thorns Hall (B, L, D)

Day 3Rawthey Valley, Howgills and Middleton Fell

Option 1 – Rawthey Valley

Distance: 7 miles (11.5km)

Ascent: 750 feet (220m)

In summary: Explore the green valleys around Sedbergh on this circular walk. We’ll head through the fields into Garsdale and then return beside the Clough River and River Rawthey. 

Highlight: Towards the end of the walk we’ll pass Farfield Mill. This lovingly restored Victorian woollen mill that now hosts a heritage centre.

Option 2 – Crook and Winder

Distance: 5.5 miles (9km)

Ascent: 1,750 feet (540m)

In summary: Ascending Settlebeck Gill behind Thorns Hall we take a contouring route to the subsidiary top of Crook. We then continue to the summit of Winder, followed by a well tracked descent and return to the House.

Highlight: Capped with a trig point Winder is iconic from a Sedbergh perspective, and is included in Sedbergh School cross country runs.

Option 3 – Middleton Fell

Distance:  11 miles (17.5km)

Ascent: 2100 feet (640m)

In summary: The Dales Way takes us into Dentdale before ascending to Combe Top on the long ridge of Middleton Fell. Looking across to the nearby summits we return by good paths over the open fell to reach Sedbergh.

Highlight: The climb up to Combe Top should offer dramatic views of Combe Scar.

Accommodation: Thorns Hall (B, L, D)

Day 4Free day

A free day for you to explore the local area or to relax in the Country House. Our Discovery Points help you make the most out of your free day. There’s plenty of maps and a selection of the best local walking routes, as well as weather forecasts and public transport options – plus details about other places to visit.

Accommodation: Thorns Hall (B, L, D)

Day 5Dentdale

Option 1 – Along Dentdale

Distance: 7 miles (11km) 

Ascent: 500 feet (140m) 

In SummaryFollow the Dales Way along Dentdale, through the village of Dent to Sedbergh. Our route follows the River Dee for most of the day before a gentle ascent over the hill to Sedbergh. 

HighlightWe’ll explore the small village of Dent, peacefully situated at the head of the valley, and discover the story of its ‘terrible knitters.’

Option 2 – Above Dentdale & Aye Gill Pike

Distance: 9.5 miles (15km) 

Ascent: 1,250 feet (380m)

In SummaryWalk high on the moors above above Dentdale to Rise Hill and Aye Gill Pike. Our route then descends gradually along the grassy ridge to Sedbergh. 

HighlightEnjoy the panoramic views over Sedbergh and the Howgill Fells as you descend from Aye Gill Pike.

Option 3 – Whernside

Distance: 10½ miles (16.5km) 

Ascent: 1950 feet (600m) 

In SummaryAscend from Dentdale onto the lofty summit of Whernside. We descend by Deepdale and follow the River Dee into Dent.  

HighlightWhernside is the highest of the Yorkshire Three Peaks with excellent views of the Pennines, the Lake District and the Ribblehead Viaduct.

Accommodation: Thorns Hall (B, L, D)

Day 6Dufton, High Cup Nick and Appleby

Option 1 – Eden Valley

Distance: 7.5 miles (11.5km) 

Ascent: 650 feet (200m) 

In SummaryWalk through the rich green pastures of Cumbria’s Eden Valley on this walk from Dufton to Appleby. Our route includes the magical wooded valley of Dufton Ghyll. 

HighlightOur walk connects the charming fell side village of Dufton, with the historic market town of Appleby-in-Westmorland.

Option 2 – Around Dufton Pike

Distance: 10 miles (16.5km) 

Ascent: 1,050 feet (320m) 

In SummaryHead onto the lower slopes of the North Pennines on our walk around the shapely summit of Dufton Pike. We then head through the fields of the Eden Valley to Appleby. 

HighlightEnjoy great views back to High Cup Nick, then celebrate the completion of your walk with refreshments in one of Appleby’s historic pubs or cafes.

Option 3 – High Cup Nick

Distance: 9½ miles (15km) 

Ascent: 1,850 feet (560m) 

In SummaryFollow the Pennine Way from Dufton to the magnificent High Cup Nick. Our route takes us around the rim of this deep cut valley before a descending back to Dufton. 

HighlightHigh Cup Nick is an immense ‘U-shaped’ valley carved into the slopes of the North Pennines – a dramatic natural feature.

Accommodation: Thorns Hall (B, L, D)

Day 7River Dee and Bram Rigg

Option 1 – River Dee and Briggflatts

Distance: 7 miles (11km)

Ascent: 600 feet (200m)

In summary: Via the village of Millthrop we head into Dentdale to walk beside the River Dee. We then cross the River Rawthey to visit the Quaker Meeting House at Brigflatts and the return to Sedbergh.

Highlight: The Quaker Meeting House is not only of historic interest, but coupled with its garden, is a place for quiet reflection.

Option 2 – The Dales Way and River Rawthey

Distance: 9 miles (14.5km)

Ascent: 1,000 feet (320m)

In summary: Walk along the base of Winder, before descending towards the River Lune and The Dales Way, which is followed to Millthrop Bridge. From here it is a short walk back to Thorns Hall.

Highlight: Views of the Lune Valley, followed by beautiful walking beside the River Rawthey.

Option 3 – Bram Rigg Top and Great Dummocks

Distance: 10.5 miles (17km)

Ascent: 2,700 feet (820m)

In summary: An unusual West-East traverse of the Howgills, which includes s steep ascent to Bram Rigg Top. The descent is via the attractive Fawcett Bank Rigg, where the gradient steepens shortly before reaching the Rawthey Valley en route to Thorns Hall.

Highlight: The descent offers wonderful views south towards Sedbergh and beyond.

Accommodation: Thorns Hall (B, L, D)

Day 8Departure Day

Enjoy a leisurely breakfast before making your way home. (B)

Dates and Prices
Version 1
Departure Dates
Per person (single or twin) Single in a double room
2023: April 28 $2,330 $2,610
2023: May 5 $2,330 $2,610
2023: June 2, 9 $2,330 $2,610
2023: July 21 $2,330 $2,610
2023: August 4 $2,330 $2,610
Version 2
Departure Dates
Per person (single or twin) Single in a double room
2023: May 19 $2,330 $2,610
2023: July 7 $2,330 $2,610
2023: July 28 $2,330 $2,610
2023: September 22 $2,330 $2,610

Pricing

Pricing is per person (pp) based on single/twin/double occupancy.

Supplement applied for single in a double room.

Rates are in $ CAD. Rates include room upgrade (better) and membership fees. 


Contact DHTour at 1-888-597-3519 or 905-639-9954 or dhtour@dhtour.ca to book.

Ask us for the best available pricing for your dates & choice of airline. We can assist in your travel to/from the Country House.

This tour is also available in 3, 4 or 5 night duration. 

This holiday includes active sightseeing and you should expect to spend lots of time on your feet.

While every effort will be made to adhere to the described itinerary, we may occasionally vary the sequence shown here or substitute an alternative route to suit local conditions or for other operational reasons, potentially at short notice. Sometimes things happen beyond our control – the weather, traffic jams or changes at the places we visit. If we need to adjust your holiday programme, for whatever reason, your leader will help smooth the way.

Travel Details:
Address is: Thorns Hall, Cautley Road, Sedbergh, Cumbria, LA10 5LE

By Train:
The nearest train station is Oxenholme, the Lake District, on the main line between London and Glasgow.

By Taxi:
The 10 mile journey from Oxenholme station to Thorns Hall can be made by taxi. You can pre-book a taxi from our recommended taxi company, Woofs of Sedbergh. As a guide price, it costs £28 per 4-seat taxi in 2020 8-seat taxis are also available at a higher rate. Please pre-book your taxi at least 7 days in advance by contacting:

Woofs of Sedbergh*
Tel: +44 (0) 1539 620414
Email: woofs.sedbergh@outlook.com
The return taxi journey can be arranged on your behalf by the Thorns Hall Manager.
*Woofs of Sedbergh is not owned or managed by us.

By Car:
Leave the M6 at junction 37 and follow the A684 eat for 5 miles to Sedbergh. On reaching Sedbergh follow the road round to the right into Finkle Street (avoiding the main street), then almost immediately turn left at a small roundabout into Back Lane. At the next mini-roundabout bear left onto the A683 following signs to Kirkby Stephen. Thorns Hall is a further 100 yards along the road on the left. Look out for our sign. A car park is available in the grounds with free parking.

Hotel Descriptions
3

Thorns Hall

Situated in Sedbergh, in West Yorkshire’s portion of the famous Dales, at the foot of the Howgill Fells, Thorns Hall offers cosy, country-pile atmosphere amid beautiful rural surroundings. Dating from 1535, the small manor house is home to 25 bedrooms as well as wood-panelled public rooms, open fireplaces and a cobbled courtyard that ooze historic charm. From every aspect the hills can be seen rising around the house and a short hop takes you from the house to the fells and upland scenery. Marvel at the 24 arch Ribblehead Viaduct, climb the distinctive summit of Ingleborough, one of the Three Peaks, explore classic limestone scenery and stop in at one of Appleby’s historic pubs for a well-earned toast.

Address: Thorns Hall, Cautley Road, Sedbergh, Cumbria, LA10 5LE

Room Amenities: Tea & coffee-making facilities, TV, Hairdryer, Toiletries, Wi-Fi

Stay in one of the Hall’s smartly presented rooms in the main house or cottages across the courtyard. With 25 rooms, Thorns Hall has plenty of space and there’s a range of Good, Better and Best Rooms to choose from. Our pick is Room 25, a very spacious escape on the ground floor with a great brick fireplace, comfy seats to sit in and big bed as well as gorgeous views of the gardens. Look out too for large and airy Room 4 and the more intimate Room 13 with its exposed wood ceiling and courtyard view.

All ‘Good’ rooms are ensuite and furnished to a high standard. There are also several ‘Better’ and ‘Best’ Rooms that are either larger or have a desirable view, a more luxurious mattress, larger television, enhanced toiletries and a fluffy bathrobe & slippers.

Hotel Amenities: Free Wi-Fi, boot room and drying room, formal garden, large reception hall, two lounges, library and board games to borrow

After a day exploring the Dales, come back to the house and its specially tailored walkers’ facilities. At the front of the house there’s a pretty, formal garden that makes a pleasant spot to relax in. Take up residence in the lounge below the exposed wood beams or seek refuge in the small, dark wood-panelled bar with its over-sized fireplace and log burner for an atmospheric corner to kick back in and catch up with fellow guests over a local ale or two.

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