North York Moors Walk
Hawnby, Bilsdale West and Wetherhouse Moors
Walk Route Description
This North York Moors walk, north of the village of Hawnby, makes a circuit of Hawnby, Bilsdale West and Wetherhouse Moors and gives views into upper Ryedale, Bilsdale and Ladhill Gill. There is plenty of off-road parking (grid ref. SE539916) and the start of the walk is very easy to follow when you realise that you are heading for Bilsdale Transmitter. What seems unlikely is that it is actually over 3 miles away. Anyway, take the left hand moors track and follow it northwards up Hawnby Moor.
The views are mainly behind you - of Hawnby Hill and Easterside Hill - so keep looking back as you continue walking north. Keep left where a track bears off right (grid ref. SE541930) towards Sike House and carry on past Low Thwaites. Shortly after this the bridleway takes to a ditch on your right, which you must take to get through the next gate, but rejoins the track again shortly afterwards.
Carry on to the transmitter (grid ref. SE553961), which gives TV and radio signals to North Yorkshire, Teeside and County Durham. Then take the access road back down to Stingamires. There are now good views down into Bilsdale as you pass Stingamires then take the path off right at grid ref. SE563957 past Coniser to Stone House and then Fangdale Beck.
In the village you can carry straight on over the beck then turn right on the road to Malkin Bower. There is a path signposted off on the right (grid ref. SE569944) that follows the wall up on your right to the site of old quarries and you pick up the track coming up from Malking Bower as it makes its way up to open country again.
Go through the gate at the top, turn left on a moors track then take the middle of three tracks over the moor. The best defined track is the one on left - and it is no problem if you take this - but after 250 metres when you reach a gate follow the wall off to the right and you will pick up the "middle" track that heads south west down Shaw Side.
Carry straight on at the junction with bridleways/tracks going to Hazleshaw House on your right or Wethercote Farm on your left, and just past Bumper Castle the track swaps from the left of a wall to the right when it goes through a gate. It becomes less clearly defined when you leave the open country shortly afterwards but for some time now you should have been able to see the place where you are parked off to your right - so you can see where you are heading.
When you get to a small field on your right surrounded by a disintegrating stone wall and a track leading off uphill on the left to Crow Nest you need to head down to the Ladhill Beck. The path was not well defined here when I walked it so you may have to search for the footbridge over the beck. If it is a bit of a struggle to find the path don't worry, just head up hill and there is a new gate back into open country on the other side of the beck at grid ref SE545917 from where the path back to the parking at Sunley Slack is easy to follow.
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The North York Moors
This guidebook describes 50 circular day walking routes in the North York Moors. The moors offer no great height but cover seven regions; the Tabular Hills, Hambleton Hills, Cleveland Hills, Northern Moors, High Moors, Eastern Moors and Cleveland Coast. There is also a four-day route following the classic Lyke Wake Walk.