The best walk in the Yorkshire Dales..........probablyArncliffe.....Malham Cove....Malham......Gordale Scar.....Arncliffe........16 miles (ish)
Starting in the perfectly formed village of Arncliffe, with the green surrounded by stunning cottages and a pub, start by heading out along the track behind the pub up towards the moors.
As you climb through the fields up onto the balcony path above Yew Cogar Scar, the view opens up into Littondale, possibly the best view of any of the Dales is to be had from here.
Over the top and the long open expanse of the high limestone pavement makes you feel very small in comparison to the vastness of the wilderness around you.
With the wide open spaces of the wilderness behind, you enter the spectacular "Watlows", now a dry valley that would have raged with the melt waters of the last ice age
Very deep and very steep sided this valley would have supplied the waters that once flowed over Malham Cove, but is sadly no more and we just have to use our imaginations to visualize how amazing the falls must have been.
The view from the top of Malham Cove never fails to inspire, and means that we are nearly half way round the walk.
And the view from the bottom is no less inspiring! Still along way to go though.....
In the village of Malham many ancient stone footbridges cross the beck to ensure the locals can get home without getting their feet wet!!... A pub and plenty of tea shops here, so its a good place to stop and rest before heading on again.
From Malham we make our way along the beautiful wooded path towards "Janets Foss" waterfall, and then on to Gordale Scar.
The exotic vegetation looks like it would be more at home in the rain forests of South America.
Gordale Scar.........very difficult to photograph, and far far bigger than any image portrays.
With no sense of scale its hard to believe that the waterfall in the background is probably 20m high!