One of the things we’re constantly spoiled for in the UK is amazing places to visit and with a wealth of walking trails, nature reserves or countryside highlights in every county, there’s always somewhere to go and explore and potentially discover a whole new adventure.
This past weekend, I found myself alongside friends in the gorgeous and always impressive Yorkshire Dales and this time we started the expedition at Bolton Abbey. Steeped in history and featured heavily as the highlight and starting point to what was to come, this trail would serve as one of the most unpredictable walks I’ve been on in a long time. This 12th century monastery sits before a gorgeous and well-kept estate which leads to the beginnings of the trail and even on a grey and drizzly Saturday afternoon there were still a lot of people on site. As with most, there are a variety of different routes that can be taken depending on your abilities, but of course we aimed to conquer the longest, five-mile, hike right the way up the River Wharfe as it twisted and turned, navigating the many hills and inclines before finding a bridge to explore the other side on the way back. This trail whilst sticking to the path and seeming quite moderate still manages to wear you out and with all the hills and twists along the narrow riverside path, the calves were burning long before the end.
One amazing feature of the track was its minimalism and lack of fencing and barricade. As essential as safety procedures are, the fact that there was at no point a barrier between you and what seemed like a 60ft drop at times only made the task more exciting. The views are astounding and there really isn’t any countryside like te Yorkshire Dales, but with the Abbey in the background as you reached your furthest point, you really began to realise how hard you’d worked. Another great corner of the Dales explored and one I’d recommend to anybody, especially if heritage and history is your cup of tea.