A circular walk around and over Black Hambleton and the end of Arden Moor; described here in a clockwise direction but just as good in reverse. There is a mixture of open moorland crossed via broad tracks and upland pasture crossed by narrow paths through the heather.
Calculated time is computed with the distance, the height difference, and an average speed of 2.2 mph. For an intermediate walker, this time includes small breaks.
Park at Square Corner on the road between Osmotherley and Hawnby, space for about 15 well parked cars.
(D/A) Leave the parking and take the track south, pass through a gate and continue to pass a track on the right leading into the woodland. Where the track gets near to the wall on the right (small gate), keep an eye out for a faint path, opposite, on the left.
(1) Turn left and follow the faint path. It contours the hillside below Hambleton End and then descends very gently to join a good track beside a gate in a wall and next to a stone shooting butt.
(2) Turn right and follow the stoned track which again descends gently to the ruined buildings at Dale Head.
(3) The path passes between the two sets of ruins, then turn left and head downhill with the left hand pair of buildings remaining on your left. Go through a gate (arrow) and into a grassy field with livestock and sheep and walk along the top of the field with a wire fence on your right. You will descend and go over a gated bridge.
(4) After the gated bridge, the path contours the hillside via a narrow path through the heather. In places, the path splits and this section can be very muddy after rain with some of the paths becoming waterlogged and turned into small shallow streams. You will see a couple of prominent trees ahead of you behind a stone wall, the path will bring you to a gate in the wall at the lower of the trees.
(5) Turn right and follow the path uphill or take the track on the right just before the wall. The path passes to the right of a small quarry before joining the broader track. At first, the broader track is peaty but it quickly becomes a more grassy track and then is stoned to allow the passage of 4 wheel drive vehicles. It turns to the right and then left as it ascends the hillside (Locker Bank) to bring you out on the moor top at a T junction.
(6) Turn right and take another broad stoned track which follows the edge of the moor above Locker Bank and then turns south to join another track (Cleveland Way / Hambleton Street) at White Gill Head.
(7) Turn right again and follow The Cleveland Way / Hambleton Street in a northwesterly and then northerly direction. There is a stone wall to your left but there are good views beyond this across the farmland to Northallerton. Just after the start of the wooded plantation on the left, you will arrive at a prominent pile of stones.
(8) At the stones, turn right and follow the path through the heather to the trig point which marks the summit of Black Hambleton.
(9) From the summit, follow your tracks back to the pile of stones (8) then turn right and take the good track again which immediately starts to descend passing (1). Go through the gate and follow the track back to the parking. (D/A)
D/A : km 0 - alt. 266m - Square Corner
1 : km 0.68 - alt. 302m - Faint path
2 : km 1.52 - alt. 275m - Stoned track
3 : km 2.48 - alt. 236m - Dale Head
4 : km 2.67 - alt. 216m - Bridge
5 : km 3.71 - alt. 218m
6 : km 5.25 - alt. 381m - T junction
7 : km 6.74 - alt. 374m - White Gill Head
8 : km 8.47 - alt. 387m - Stones
9 : km 8.7 - alt. 398m - Black Hambleton
D/A : km 10.46 - alt. 265m - Square Corner
There are no shelters on this walk so make sure you are self sufficient.
I would recommend good boots, particularly if you are doing this after rain in which case the clockwise direction is a good choice as any mud from the first part of the walk is cleaned from your boots once you ascent Locker Bank and take the moor top tracks.
Visorando and this author cannot be held responsible in the case of accidents or problems occuring on this walk.
Try and do this on a clear day, my photos were taken on a rainy day in November where the top was shrouded in mist at one point and we had to grab views between the passing showers. On a clear day, you will be rewarded with nice views.
This walk can also be extended : from (6), turn left and follow the rim of Arden Moor east and then south to a junction with a good track that goes in a westerly direction and joins the Cleveland Way. Turn right and follow the Cleveland Way to (7) and the remainder of the walk as described. This adds approx. another 6km to the walk.
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The GPS track and description are the property of the author.