Dent and Deepdale

CLIMB to the hills high above Dent along an interesting track then amble along an ancient drovers road, writes JOHN EDMONDSON. Stroll down the quiet pastoral valley of Deepdale, which is dotted with old barns and farms, and return to the pretty cobbled village of Dent via a riverside path.

Start from Dent car park, grid reference SD 704 870, postcode LA10 5QJ; £4.50 all day.


Distance: 9.5 miles with 1,800 feet of ascent

Time: 5 hours

Terrain: stony tracks and field paths

Map: OS Explorer OL2


1 From the car park cross the road and walk up Dragon Croft past the memorial hall. During the first mile the walk climbs 700 feet but it’s worth pausing along the steep stony Flintergill track to see its interesting features. According to folk law those who walk 'deiseal' (clockwise) three times through the arch of knotted roots below the Wishing Tree are granted a wish but those who go through 'widdershins' (anti-clockwise) have bad luck. High Ground Farmstead barn on the right contains a collection of old farming machinery. The waterfalls, which look a natural part of the gill, were once a limestone quarry. The lime kiln was built around 1750. Just before reaching the gate at the top of the slope make a short excursion over a stile on the right to a toposcope. A plaque points out features of the valley along with a short poem.

2 Go through a gate and turn left on to the track mapped as Green Lane, known as Occupational or Occy Road. The next four miles of the walk follows the track to High Moss, as indicated on the fingerpost. At a junction going off to the left keep right to continue ascending along the main track.

3 On meeting the road at High Moss turn left, descend steeply for 330 yards then turn right across a ladder stile on to a footpath signed Miregarth and Dyke Hall. Descend an indistinct path, aiming for farm buildings (Mire Garth) in the valley below. At a finger post turn left, descending to go over a ladder stile, then alongside a fence on the left, past trees and across a concrete track. Go behind the farm through two gates signed footpath and with yellow dots. Turn left on to the grassy track along the valley. After crossing a wall stile with another yellow sign continue ahead to a concrete track past Miregarth barn and cottage. Walk alongside a wall on the right and keep in the same direction for 0.4 mile. Go through a gate in the fence by the right corner of the fourth field. Walk beside a barn, cross the beck on the left, turn right (uphill) and go over a gated gap stile on the left. Pass a barn; go through a gate by a house, over cobbles and along a track past Blakerigg Cottage.

4 Immediately after a large concrete barn, just before the tarmacked lane, turn left; go down a hedged lane then through a gate to walk upstream then across Deepdale Beck via Bigholme footbridge. Turn right and walk along field paths following the course of the beck on the right passing a limekiln on the left. When below overhead cables turn right (this turn is easily missed) and descend to the road next to Mill Bridge. Cross the road left then right onto the signed footpath and follow the riverside path to Church Bridge. Turn left and walk through the cobble-stoned village past the George and Dragon and the granite Sedgwick Memorial back to the car park.

Next week: Pikeawassa and Hallin Fell

NB: restrictions on space mean that this article provides a general summary of the route. It is advisable for anyone who plans to follow the walk to take a copy of the relevant Ordnance Survey map.