Clapham and Norber round

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Only a week after returning home from our holiday in Settle, I was up early and driving back to the Dales. When flicking through the walking guides on holiday I’d spotted several references to the Norber erratics and rather fancied basing a walk around them. I decided to start off in Clapham (not the one in London I would add) following the route in the Cicerone guide to the Dales (South and West).

Arriving in the small village, I parked up in the National Park run car park. It cost £4-80 for the full day, which I consider to be reasonable – compare that with what it costs in central Manchester. Several other cars pulled up and the occupants of a number of the large “SUVs” which have become popular, (often as a way of showing off) were quite put out by the fee, expressing their dissatisfaction. Perhaps I shouldn’t be surprised that people who like to swank around resent making their contribution to the upkeep of the facilities, which they can surely afford. But if they’re that hard up maybe they should choose a cheaper car.

Rant over!

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So, I booted up and set off walking through the village
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past the church
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and took the track that took me towards, and under the tunnels built by the local landowners to prevent travellers along what was a major route wouldn’t have to cross the Ingleborough Hall Estate.
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There was a short steep climb after the tunnels
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I was soon passing through fields of sheep with views over to the limestone crags and hills.
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I climbed over the stile, leaving the old track and taking the path through the fields towards Norber
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Reaching a fingerpost I took the path up the hill
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and after a short climb reached the plateau
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covered with erratics – rocks that had been picked up by glaciers in the ice age and carried down the glacier and then dropped some distance from their source once the glacier melted.
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The Norber erratics are gritstone rocks, but they were deposited on limestone. Over time the softer limestone was eroded away by acidic rain, but the hardier, gritstone, much less susceptible to erosion, sheltered, protected and preserved the limestone underneath the boulders. So today many of the large boulders are “propped up” by the limestone, standing proud above the ground, perched on their “pedestals”

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I spent a little time mooching around the boulders taking a few snaps
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Then it was time to move on. I headed for the ladder stile and then followed the path across the moor
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passing outcrops of limestone and stretches of limestone pavement.
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I carried on alaong the path, climbing gradually. It was easy, pleasant walking
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Views started to open up of Penyghent
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zooming in
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As I carried on Ingleborough came into view
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I reached this large pyramidal cairn. I carried on a little until I reached the Pennine Bridleway
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I turned onto the bridleway, first of all heading west. There’s Ingleborough dead ahead.
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After a while the bridleway swung to the south
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and carried on down Long Lane back towards Clapham
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Looking across the valley towards the bottom of Trow Gill
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at the end of Long Lane (and it is long!) I reached the track from Clapham I’d walked along a few hours before. I could have headed back down through the tunnels to the village but it was a nice day and still early in the afternoon so I thought I’d extend the walk, so I turned left along the lane retracing my steps from earlier. This time though I carried on past the stile and took another path accross the fields towards the village of Austwick.
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Austwick is another pretty village full of attractive old stone cottages. They would have originally have been the homes of the agricultural labourers and quarry workers who worked in the ara. Today they’re expensive homes and holiday cottages.
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At the bottom of the village there’s a path that leads through the fields to Clapham.
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Getting closer to Clapham – that’s Ingleborough Hall. Originally the home of the Farrer family, the local Lords of the Manor, today it’s an outdoor activity centre owned by Bradford Council
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I arrived back in Clapham
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Time for a brew in the cafe in the old Manor House – a listed building, built in 1701 and converted into a Reading Room in 1790.
A reading room? Apparently :
 “Nearly every village in the Yorkshire Dales was provided at some time with a Reading Room or Literary Institute. Non-conformist communities particularly valued the opportunity for sober education provided by such places and this coincided with the interest of the middle classes in keeping their workers out of public houses.” (source)

After a quick stroll around the village I changed out of my boots and then set of back home. It had been a sunny, but windy day. The weather forecast was looking good for the next few days. That gave me an idea……

A longer Settle Loop

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Sunday morning I was up early and greeted by what promised to be a fine day. After a leisurely breakfast I mad up some sandwiches and a flask of coffee and got ready for a walk up on the hills. No need to drive anywhere to start the walk as I was able to set out from the front door.

A few months ago I’d seen Alistair Campbell (not my favourite person) walking in this area on a Winter Walk on TV. Watching this had inspired me to do some walking around here and when we were thinking of where we might stay for a short break, Settle came to mind. I’d seen a circular route from Settle on the Discovering Britain Website (the downloadable booklet describing the walk includes some very interesting information by a local) and had originally thought I’d follow that. However, on the day I decided to extend the walk, heading towards Malham and then looping back towards Langcliffe on the Pendle Bridleway. I could have extended further by popping into Malham, but a quick calculation suggested I’d have trouble getting back before sunset and didn’t want to get stuck in the dark on unfamiliar moors. Going into Malham was certainly doable but I’ll have to save that for another time when longer days would allow me to linger for a while.

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The view from the front door
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The neighbours across the road

I had to walk into Settle and then head up through the streets on to the old Langcliffe Road, before turning off onto the moor.

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Looking down over Settle
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Setting off down the lane onto the moor
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Zooming in onto the row of mill houses and the old mill. I could see our holiday home and our car!
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On the moor now. An old drystone wall on my right. I’d be saying mile upon mile of them during my walk
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I turned off the Langcliffe path climbing steeply up the hill. This is the view looking back down towards settle and the Giggleswick Scar
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Nearing the top of the climb Penyghent came into view
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Close to the summit of the path now, with the Warrendale Knotts on the left
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Well into limestone country now
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The limestone cliffs are riddled with caves
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Attermire Scar came into view
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Looking back towards the Warrendale Knotts
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Attermire Scar. It’s almost hard to believe that these mighty cliffs were created from the skeletal remains of tiny sea creatures
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Looking back again
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I stopped for a brew and a croissant and took yet another photo looking back to the limestome cliffs. The terrain to the left is very different as the scars mark the change from millstone grit to limestone geology. The land to the left is very boggy and that’s the origin of the name of Attermire – “mire” is an old word for bog
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Looking over the mire I had a hazy view of Pendle Hill
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The route now took me over a stile and onto the Stockdale Lane.
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I was on tarmac for a while on the quiet lane but it turned into a rough track after the turnoff for Stockdale farm. A gradual climb now for a few miles on the path towards Malham
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A couple of miles before Malham I turned north. Malham Tarn soon came into view
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zooming in
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A large herd of Belted Galloways were grazing quiety, not paying any attention tot he walkers and cyclists passing by
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I passed a section of limestone pavement
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and this long line of sheep
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The distinctive profile of Ingleborough came into view
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and, a little further on, Penyghent
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All three of the Three Peaks came into view
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Getting closer to Langcliffe I approached more Limestone scars
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There’s Jubilee cave – I popped up to have a quick look inside.
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There wasn’t much to see – just a black hole!
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Approaching the minor road from Langcliffe to Malham
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Looking down to Langcliffe
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Rather than walk down into the village, I cut off across the fields back towards Settle and then back to our holiday home.
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About 10 minutes before I arrived I got a phone call. It was J asking how long I’d be and did I want her to make a brew for when I got back. Did I? Silly question 🤣. And that was good timing!