GPS Cycle and Walking Routes

Nidderdale Walks

Please use the links below to view full route information including descriptions, elevation profiles, interactive maps and GPS downloads.

You can also view an overview map of all the routes in the using the Nidderdale Walk Map

Route NamePhotoDistanceDescription
Bewerley Industrial Heritage Trail9 miles (14 km)Explore the Pateley Bridge area of Nidderdale, North Yorkshire on this historical circular walk. The trail explores nearly a thousand years of lead mining history while also offering splendid views of the beautiful Nidderdale area.
Highlights include the delightful waterfalls at Throstle Nest and Coldstones Cut-a huge artisitic construction which visitors can freely walk through and explore. The sculpture overlooks the working Coldstones Quarry and offers fabulous views of the scenery of Nidderdale in the Yorkshire Dales.
Brimham Rocks3 miles (4.5 km)Brimham Rocks is a National Trust owned site with a collection of fascinating rock formations. You can explore the labyrinth of paths while enjoying fabulous views over Nidderdale.
The site is located near Pately Bridge and on the Nidderdale Way walking route so there is scope for continuing your walk through the Nidderdale AONB.
Fewston Reservoir3 miles (5.5 km)Enjoy an easy circular walk around the lovely Fewston Reservoir in the Yorkshire Dales. The path around the reservoir is well surfaced and largely flat so this is a good walk for abilities. The reservoir is surrounded by woodland and beautiful widlflowers including common vetch, betony, milkwork golden rod and common cow-wheat. Also look out for birds on the water including Moorhens, Geese and Ducks.
This walk starts at Blubberhouses at the northern end of the reservoir and follows the waterside footpaths around the reservoir.
It's easy to extend your walk by heading to the adjacent Thruscross Reservoir. A lovely footpath along the River Washburn will take you there. Swinsty Reservoir is also just to the south and also has an easy circular footpath.
Fewston Reservoir is located near to Leeds and Harrogate.
Gouthwaite Reservoir5 miles (8 km)This walk takes you around this delightful reservoir, near Pateley Bridge and Ramsgill. The route makes use of the Nidderdale Way footpath which runs around the reservoir. It's a super place for birdwatching with three viewing areas on the edge of the reservoir. Look out forgreat spotted woodpeckerandnuthatch in the trees around the water.On the reservoir you can spot goosanders, goldeney,mallard,tufted duckandpochard. Other visitors include buzzard,red kite,hen harriers,merlinsandkestrels.
This walk starts at the car park on the western end of the reservoir but you could also start at Pately Bridge and follow the River Nidd to the reservoir.
To extend your walk you could follow the Nidderdale Way to the spectacular limestone gorge at How Stean Gorge.
How Stean Gorge3 miles (5 km)Visit this spectacular limestone gorge and enjoy a walk through the beautiful Nidderdale countryside. You can park in the village of Middlesmoor and then follow footpaths to the gorge about half a mile south. It's great for walkers with lots of public footpaths along the rushing river and through the surrounding woodland. The area also has an activity centre where you can try caving, rock climbing, abseiling and canoeing.
After exploring the gorge you could extend your walk by picking up the Nidderdale Way and following it to the nearby Gouthwaite Reservoir.
Knaresborough Round20 miles (32 km)This 20 mile circular walk takes you on a tour of the countryside, lakes, rivers, woodland and villages surrounding the historic Yorkshire town of Knaresborough. It's a great way to explore this beautiful part of North Yorkshire.
The walk starts by the River Nidd near Knaresborough Castle in the town centre. You then follow the river east towards the village of Goldsborough, home to the Grade II* listedJacobeanmansion of Goldsborough Hall. Woodland sections through Great Wood and Parsonage Wood take you to Flaxby and Coneythorpe.
The route continues through several small villages around Farnham including Ferrensby, Occaney, Brearton and Scotton where you will enter the wonderful Nidd Gorge. The beautiful river gorge is a real highlight on the walk with lots of interesting flora and fauna to look out for.
The final section takes you towards Starbeck and Gallow Hill before returning to the town.
This walk joins with the Harrogate Ringway so you can pick up this trail to further explore the area.
Lindley Wood Reservoir2 miles (3 km)Enjoy an easy walk along this pretty reservoir and wood in the Washburn valley. You can start the walk from the nearby village of Leathley and follow a footpath along the River Washburn to the reservoir. The path takes you along the eastern side of the water with some peaceful woodland trails to enjoy in the adjacent Lindley Wood. Here you will find pretty bluebells in the spring and the rushing waters of Greystone Beck. It's a lovely area with the reservoir surrounded by attractive woodland and the option of continuing your walk along the Washburn to Norwood Bottom.
If you enjoy this walk then you could visit Swinsty Reservoir and Fewston Reservoir. These are located a couple of miles north of Lindley Wood in the Nidderdale AONB.
Just to the south is the splendid Otley Chevin Country Park where you will find woodland, heathland, meadowland and rocky outcrops with marvellous views.
Lindley Wood is located close to Otley and not far from Leeds.
Nidderdale Way53 miles (85 km)Explore beautiful Nidderdale in the Yorkshire Dales on this circular walk. The walk includes splendid riverside sections along the River Nidd and waterside sections alongside Scar House Reservoir and Gouthwaite Reservoir. The delightful town of Pateley Bridge is a good access point and just a short walk along the River Nidd leads you to the main attraction on the route - Gouthwaite Reservoir.
Also of interest is the 15th century castle at Ripley. The castle, and the landscaped grounds are open to the public.
The walk is waymarked with named signposts.
Pateley Bridge Circular Walk11 miles (18 km)This circular walk around the Yorkshire town of Pateley Bridge makes use of the Nidderdale Way to take you on a tour the countryside, reservoirs, rivers and woodland surrounding the town. It's just over 12 miles in length so it's one you can complete in a day. The town is an excellent base for walks in the Nidderdale area. It is also home to the oldest sweet shop in England and the fascinating Nidderdale Museum.
The route starts in the centre of the town and follows the River Nidd north to Gouthwaite Reservoir, passing the village of Wath-in-Nidderdale on the way. The path then heads along the water to Ramsgill with great views across the reservoir. Gouthwaite is very popular with birdwatchers with goosanders, goldeney,mallard,tufted duckandpochard to look out for on the water. At Ramsgill you will find the Yorke Arms, a Michelin-starred restaurant on the village green. Here you turn south along the western side of the reservoir to Heathfield. The walk then heads along the pretty Ashfold Sidebeck towards Pinnacle Hill. On this section of the walk you reach a height of almost 1000ft so there are some really wonderful views over the Yorkshire Dales to enjoy.
The final section descends past Pincher Hill with a short woodland section here also. Shortly after you return to the finish point back in Pateley.
There are many other great walks around Pateley Bridge to try. You can pick up the Six Dales Trail and explore Wharfedale, Washburndale, Colsterdale, Coverdale, and Wensleydale.
The Bewerley Industrial Heritage Trail also passes through Pateley. The fascinating trail explores nearly a thousand years of lead mining history.
Scar House Reservoir4 miles (6 km)This circular walk takes you around Scar House Reservoir to Angram Reservoir in Nidderdale. The reservoir has a well surfaced footpath running around the perimeter and a car park at the eastern end. The surrounding countryside is beautiful with views of the Yorkshire Hills and the River Nidd.
You can easily extend your walk by picking up the Nidderdale Way and heading along the river.
Studley Park and Fountains Abbey4 miles (7 km)This marvellous attraction boasts 800 acres of beautiful parkland set in the Yorkshire countryside. Explore the beautiful landscaped Georgian water garden of Studley Royal, before heading to the fascinating 12th-century Fountains Abbey. Look out for beautiful statues, follies and the many resident deer in the deer park. The ancient corn mill, the 17th century Fountains Hall and the Victorian Gothic church are also well worth a look.
The park is located just to the west of the North Yorkshire city of Ripon on the edge of the Nidderdale AONB. The Ripon Rowel long distance footpath passes the park so you can pick this up to extend your walking in the area. Heading south will take you through the countryside to Ingerthorpe and Markington.
Just to the east you can pick up the towpath of the Ripon Canal and enjoy an easy walk to Newby Hall. The 18th century house is well worth a visit, with its splendid gardens and views over the River Ure.
Swinsty Reservoir3 miles (5 km)This is a nice, easy circular walk around Swinsty Reservoir in the Yorkshire Dales. The path is well surfaced and largely flat making the walk suitable for all abilities.
The walk starts at the car park on the eastern side of the reservoir and follows the footpath through woodland to the Fewston Embankment, passing Fewston on the way. You head along the Fewston Embankment with splendid views of both Swinsty Reservoir and the adjacent Fewston Reservoir. A woodland section through the Swinsty Moor plantation then takes you to Swinsty Hall, before coming to the Swinsty Embankmentwith great views of the River Washburn Valley to the south. A short waterside section past more woodland then returns you to the car park.
It's easy to extend your walking in this lovely area by heading to the nearby Fewston Reservoir, Thruscross Reservoir and Lindley Wood Reservoir for more waterside walks.
Thruscross Reservoir5 miles (8 km)This is a delightful waterside walk around Thruscross Reservoir in the Yorkshire Dales. It's a beautiful area with the tranquil waters of the reservoir surrounded by peaceful woodland and beautiful countryside.
The walk begins at the car park at the southern end of the reservoir and takes you along a good footpath to Whit Moor, Far Comb Hill and past the hugely impressive dam. It is a fairly easy walk with woodland sections, waterside sections and some moderate climbs.
Thruscross is located near to Leeds and Harrogate.
You can easily extend your walk by heading to the adjacent Fewston Reservoir. A riverside footpath along the River Washburn will take you there. Swinsty Reservoir is also just a little further south and offers a shorter walk.
Whernside8 miles (13 km)Climb to the highest point in North Yorkshire on this challenging walk in the Yorkshire Dales. Whernside is one of the Yorkshire Three Peaks, with the others being Ingleborough and Pen y ghent.
This circular walk begins at Ribblehead and heads to the Blue Clay Ridge via the magnificent Ribblehead Viaduct. You continue your ascent passing the pretty Little Dale Beck and Force Gill where you can see a series of waterfalls. The route then passes Knoutberry Hull and a small tarn before arriving at the 736m (2,415ft) Whernside summit. From here there are fantastic views over the Yorkshire Dales, theLake DistrictandMorecambe Bay.
From the summit you descend to Broadrake before crossing the lovely Winterscales Beck. You then follow the beck to Gunnerfleet Farm, and on to the finish point at Ribblehead.
To extend your walking in the area you could try our easy circular walk around the magnificent Ribblehead Viaduct. The Grade II* listedstructure is one of the England's greatest monuments to Victorian engineering.
The long distance Dales Way and Ribble Way both pass near to the mountain so you could pick up these splendid trails to further explore the area.

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