Offlist Walk: Wharfdale (Burnsall and Linton)

29 01 2011
29th January 2011
with Mrs NLW
6.5 miles
Explorer OL2 (Yorkshire Dales (Southern & Western areas))
Sunny, cold

Burnall Bridge

First walk of a long-weekend staying in a lovely cottage in Ilkley. We drove up from Ilkley via Bolton Abbey which we’d seen a few months earlier on the Steve Coogan/Rob Brydon programme ‘The Trip’. Parking in Burnsall was easy, £3 for as long as you like in a nice riverbank location with toilet facilities and a refreshment kiosk.

The Wharf

We set off by heading towards Burnsall bridge, but not crossing it – instead working our way between the river and the Red Lion Hotel heading north up a well established path. We passed a number of walkers, and some kayakers tackling a section of white water, before we reached a narrow suspension bridge near Hebden. After cross the bridge we follow the north-eastern bank of the Wharf for a couple of miles, before we leave it to pass a trout farm and smokery, and then cross a field back to the bridge at Linton Falls where there are more rapids.

Linton Village Green

We recross the Wharf and wind our way through the little cottages of Linton falls before heading briefly back down the southwestern bank where – just shy on Linton church – we turn south, cross a field, join the B6160 for a few yards, and then follow a lane into the village of Linton itself. Linton is a picturesque dales village with a fabulous village green sitting next to a brook. We eat our lunch sitting on a bench overlooking the green, pondering how much the cottages cost (too much) and trying to avoid the hungry ducks.

Terraced fields between Linton & Thorpe

After lunch we start the return leg of the walk, heading south-east out of the village, past an impressive looking B&B and then up into the rolling farmland. The fields are covered in frost, and we can see where the farmer has been round removing the ice from the water-troughs. We reach Thorpe Lane and walk comfortably to the hamlet of Thorpe, hidden in a hollow between the hills it is easy to see how the marauding Scots often missed it. After Thorpe we follow a lane back uphill, and then we join an increasing number of walkers as we follow a track gently downhill towards Burnsall, crossing a number of high gated stiles (approx 20 of them). We finally appear out of a snicket between some cottages onto a lane behind the Red Lion, and then it’s an easy stroll back to the car.

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