Reaching 2,019 “Boots On” Miles

It’s 319 days into my challenge to walk 2,019 miles in 2019 to raise funds to support the Trussell Trust and today I should reach my goal.  It became apparent a few weeks ago that I would reach my mileage target in November; it dawned on me that with a little effort the feat could be achieved on one of my favourite walks up Ingleborough.    It would be expecting too much to actually hit 2,019 miles at the summit of Ingleborough, but it will be close to it.

My walking buddy, Mandy, joins me on today’s walk.  Over recent years we have walked together in various parts of the country, but this will be her first time walking Ingleborough.

After parking in the Yorkshire Dales National Park car park we start by turning right up Church Avenue, staying on the road to pass the Church of St James.  After crossing a bridge we turn right and stop at the viewing platform for Clapham Falls.  The recent heavy rain has made this an impressive sight.

Leaving the village the route enters the Ingleborough Estate Nature Trail; there is a machine to buy a ticket for the route through the estate.  Years ago when Lynnie and I first did this walk you started alongside the sawmill and dropped your money into an honesty box.  

The path quickly rises and then levels as it passes the man-made lake on the Estate.  This was created in the 19th century to provide drinking water to the village and drive the water turbine installed to provide electricity for some grand properties, the church and street lighting.

We pass The Folly and continue on the track to go through a gate and follow the path besides the beck, going by the entrance to Ingleborough Cave.  This show cave is open to the public and apparently gives access to a 500-metre passage. 

Alongside the cave, water emerges from the rock face.  It has come off Ingleborough, down Fell Beck and then fallen into Gaping Gill.  The waterfall from Fell Beck to the bottom of Gaping Gill is the tallest unbroken waterfall in England with the water falling 322 feet, however to see it properly you have to descend into the pothole. 

We follow the track and go through two gates to reach the gorge of Trow Gill, this is a cracking spot.   We clamber up through, taking care on the rocks that are worn smooth by walkers’ hands and feet and made more precarious today as they are damp.

At the top of Trow Gill we follow the rock-strewn path besides a wall. 

After going through the wall gates we follow the clear path towards Gaping Gill.  I usually detour away from Gaping Gill to start the ascent of Ingleborough, but Mandy has not been here before and is keen to see this huge pothole. 

Resuming our walk we follow the well-used path up Little Ingleborough.  It is covered in cloud and I am worried that when we reach the summit of Ingleborough itself we will not get the views I have promised Mandy.

This is a good steady climb, as we go up the cloud appears to be lifting and we get stunning views behind us.

After reaching Little Ingleborough we follow the well-defined route across the ridge before the final ascent to the top of Ingleborough itself.  At the summit there is the obligatory photo by the trig point and then we wander over to look out over Ingleton.

We hen head back across the summit to view Whernside and the Ribblehead Viaduct.

We descend by clambering down the rocks to take the Three Peaks path towards Horton this is a long steady descent with cracking views of Pen-y-ghent in front and extensive views of limestone pavement.  

Our route goes through a short section of limestone pavement and we continue on the Three Peaks path ignoring paths to the left and right.  After going through a gate at Sulber Nick we continue for 250 yards to reach a junction of paths.  Here we turn right, and head south on a path through the pasture to reach a gate in the wall.

We now follow the path besides the wall to reach a ladder stile, which we cross and follow a well worn path as it heads in a westerly direction through limestone pavement with occasional grouse butts.

At the edge of Moughton Scar we stop to take in the stunning view over Crummack Dale  

We now follow the grass path as it descends to a gate and then follow the track as it continues to head down hill with a drystone wall to our right.  As the track bends we ignore a footpath to the right but continue on to go through a gate.  Walls on both sides now line the track and we stay with it until reaching another track.  Here we turn right and walk down to reach Austwick Beck.

A notice board explains that this part of the stream is known as the Wash Dub.  Prior to the introduction of chemical sheep dips the process of ridding sheep of parasites was to wash them by immersing them in water and giving them a good rub.  Local farmers would band together to help each other; the beck would be damned and the sheep driven down from nearby pastures.

It is at this point that my total mileage for the year reaches 2,019.  A cracking spot to achieve my goal. 

We cross the beck and continue on the track to reach Crummack Lane, where we turn left and head south for a mile.  On reach a crossing of tracks we turn right into Thwaite Lane and follow this wall lined stony track as it heads west with the impressive Robin Proctor’s Scar to our right.

We stay with the track as it descends through tunnels to reach Clapham besides the church of St James.  From here it is a short stroll back to our starting point.  Our walk has covered 13.5 miles and I can think of no better place to have reached my 2,019-mile target for the year.  

To follow my walk you will need Ordnance Survey Explorer Map OL2 – Yorkshire Dales [Western Area]

You can view this 13-mile walk on OS Maps and download the GPX File Here (Subscription to OS Maps Required)

15th November 2019

© Two Dogs and an Awning (2019)

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