A walk with lovely views in this beautiful peaceful dale following Hudeshope Beck up past the old lime kilns, over the miners bridge, through the wood and fields to Coldberry mine, then back down the beck on the other side.
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.
(D/A) Leave the fountain and follow the road past the Tourist Information Office and take the right fork signposted Stanhope. Follow the road uphill for approx. 400m and the turn left onto the single track Beck Road which drops down through woodland to the Hudeshope Beck.
(1) After 50 yards take the permissive path to the right up through the trees, following the path above the road. After 1⁄2 mile, as the main path curves sharply to the right round the side of a field, take the path off down ahead and slightly to the left. Cross a small beck with care and follow the track as it meanders left back to the road. Turn right onto the road. Alternatively you can follow the road all the way, passing the attractive Horseshoe Falls. You soon reach the arched stone Miners Bridge.
(2) Go over the bridge and continue along the broad track past conifer plantations on your left and the beck on your right until the valley starts to narrow to a gorge up ahead. The impressive limestone gorge known as Jack Scar can be viewed but is impassable on foot in most conditions. To continue go over the stile over a fence on the left alongside a small stream.
(3) After the stile follow the steps up the steep bank. At the top a stile takes you out of the woodland and into fields affording far reaching views of the Hudeshope valley. Head straight across this and the next fields using good wall stiles which are easily visible. The path will take you out onto the road past Club Gill Farm. At this point there are good views back over Teesdale to Kirkcarrion and also across the valley which shows many scars of now long gone lead mining activity.
(4) Turn right onto the road and after a few yards turn left onto a track to the remains of Coldberry Mine. Drop down from the mine shop, which was a museum for a while after the mine closed in 1955, onto a track which zigzags down to the road. Turn left onto the road and continue on over the beck. After the road crosses the beck follow it uphill for 350m until a public footpath sign on the right.
(5) Turn off the road here and cross the rough field heading back in the direction of Middleton and through the kissing gate in the wall. The path crosses Marl Beck and then broadens out into a pleasant grassy track. Follow the track past abandoned mine workings with the Hudeshope Beck on your right until a slight incline up to a gate into fields. Keep towards the right as you cross three fields, the path here can be extremely muddy at times and you should pick your route carefully. Below the wall on your right is Jack Scar Gorge. A stile over the wall takes you into the woodland and along a path high above the beck below and then past Skears Quarry and Parker’s Lime Kilns before dropping down and rejoining Beck Road.
(2) Follow the road back towards Middleton but turn right over a green metal bridge, crossing the beck and follow the track up the hill. The path passes in front of some houses before dropping down stone steps to the road. Up the hill to the right is Middleton House, where the London Lead Company based their headquarters in 1880. To complete the walk turn left and follow the road downhill back into the centre of Middleton.(D/A)
D/A : km 0 - alt. 233m - Fountain
1 : km 0.06 - alt. 235m - Permissive path
2 : km 1.59 - alt. 282m - Bridge
3 : km 2.28 - alt. 319m - Stile
4 : km 3.26 - alt. 391m - Road
5 : km 4.69 - alt. 358m - Road
D/A : km 8.7 - alt. 232m - Fountain
Parking : Please use one of the two long stay car parks (on Bridge Street or on Alston Road).
Refreshments : There is a selection of pubs, cafes and food outlets in Middleton-in-Teesdale.
Equiment : We would recommend taking an O/S map on this walk.
Dogs : Please keep dogs under close control & follow the countryside code.
Visorando and this author cannot be held responsible in the case of accidents or problems occuring on this walk.
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