Date: Saturday 7th October 2017 - a walk to the highest point in Yorkshire. Distance: 12.5 km (7.5 miles)

Parking: Ribblehead (LA6 3AS, SD 766 793)

Other transport: Ribblehead train station on the Settle to Carlisle line is close to the start

Toilets: None

Refreshments: Station Inn and, sometimes, a tea wagon in the parking area.

The ascent of Whernside involves a long steady climb and a lovely high-level ridge. The descent is steeper with a final flat section through the fields to finish underneath the spectacular Ribblehead viaduct. Again, make sure you are suitably equipped – remember as you go higher it gets colder and windier.

The Route

  1. From the road take one of the paths that head towards the impressive Ribblehead viaduct. Keep the viaduct on your left and follow an obvious path which runs alongside the railway.
  2. After 2.5km (1.5 miles) the path crosses over the railway besides an aqueduct. The path now turns to the right and starts to climb towards a high point known as Grain Head. Shortly after it starts to run alongside a fence. Look out for the stile over the fence. Cross this stile signed to Whernside and take the path leading away from the fence. Follow the path which climbs slowly on to the ridge where it joins a wall. This is then followed up to the summit. The trig point is hidden on the other side of the wall.
  3. To descend, continue to follow the path along the ridge in the same direction as before for 1.5km (1 mile) and then turn left on the signed path down to the farm at Bruntscar. This is a steep descent and much of it has stone pitched steps. As the path levels out it passes through a grassy field and then reaches a track by a barn.
  4. When you reach the farmtrack, turn left and follow the bridleway signed to Winterscales. You pass close to Broadrake Farm and then reach Ivescar Farm. Turn right by the farmhouse and then left onto the footpath towards Ribblehead. Go through a number of fields until you emerge onto a stone track.
  5. Turn left and then shortly afterwards right over a wooden bridge and follow the obvious track under the viaduct to return to the starting point.

[Three Peaks in 24 Hours] [Pen-y-ghent] [Ingleborough] [Trek Report] [Trekking in the UK]


Cyberdemon007 at the English language Wikipedia [GFDL ( or CC-BY-SA-3.0 (], via Wikimedia Commons.

Click on photo to see original image

Whernside and Ribblehead Viaduct

With thanks to Sandra Meadows

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