Leader : Bob King. Distance : 8.5 miles
Left click route & profile to enlarge
Bill reports :-
The very journey over the moors to reach our walk starting point was almost reward enough for the day out. Beautiful countryside and clear blue skies bode well for a good walk in prospect.
Now a peaceful, rural dale in the heart of the National Park, in the nineteenth century Rosedale was part of industrial Yorkshire, with its ironstone mines, kilns and even a moorland railway. Our walk under the guidance of Bob would visit some relics of that industrial heritage.
Starting in the village centre just south of the Abbey ruins we soon were off tarmac and into grassland travelling North over fairly well defined tracks, into Rosedale’s sibling Northdale, clearly a route travelled many times before. The views were wonderful. Our leader with forethought clearly had the geriatrics among us in mind by arranging a route where gates were the default obstacle passages rather than stiles.
Initially the track was pretty much level but the gradient increasing ever so slightly as we left the grassland for a short while to cross the country lane that initially took us to our start. Immediately afterwards we entered a small wood with initially a heavy canopy giving our passage a slightly eerie feel. Then again following fairly well defined paths we crossed a number of wooden bridges over small streams and the appearance of stiles to replace gates over fences and walls-we managed of course.
Soon we travelled due North and began to climb gently pausing for a while to take in the magnificent reminders of the past iron mining industry in the form of derelict kilns and other related structures.. Starting around 1856 the mining activities more or less came to an end in the 1920s but the relics remain standing proud even today and at the time of our visit were being carefully given TLC in order that they remained for future generations to witness. Not only were the ruins impressive but equally the views ahead and to our west over Dale Head and Rosedale itself were magnificent.
Onwards and we followed the contours for a while before turning due South towards Dale Head farm and to commence the return leg of our journey. Around this time Mother Nature’s water department provided small quantities of rain which necessitated the donning of waterproofs for a while as we used the shelter of small trees to take our lunch.
Post lunch we walked due west for a while crossing the little River Seven before setting out on a long and almost ridge like trail heading due south towards the village. The small rain showers left us and the lovely sunshine enabled the wonderful vistas along the dale to be fully appreciated and enjoyed.
Arriving back at our starting point refreshments were the order of the day and the group of 15 split for the first time with the toffs settling for a cup of tea and the peasants retiring to the local hostelry for a pinta. But regardless of the choice of beverage all were unanimous in celebrating a delightful day.