Ingleton Waterfalls Trail

When I was nine years old it was deemed my teeth needed the attention of an orthodontist. For my first appointment my mother accompanied me from our home in North West London to the practice on Baker Street. This involved a ½ mile walk to the bus route on the Hyde where we picked up the 183 to Kingsbury tube station. Here we caught the Bakerloo line to Wembley Park to transfer to fast service to Baker Street. Once there it was a short walk to a very swish apartment building (fountain in the foyer) taking an old fashioned lift to the third floor for the consultation which resulted in me having to wear a brace. 

When we returned home to Colindale my mother asked me if I thought I could do the journey on my own. I thought I could and so for the next five years of my life I went to Baker Street by myself for a five minute consultation to adjust my brace. I relate this story not to illustrate a precocious talent for route-finding but to demonstrate how much attitudes have changed about children going out of doors without the supervision of their parents.
These days it seems to be a parental duty to take children to school by car and not just primary school age children. Back in the 1950s to be taken to school by a parent would have caused deep feelings of embarrassment and if spotted would not escape unfavourable comment by one’s chums.
“The School Run” has now been an accepted almost institutionalised aspect of modern life. Yet in so many ways it is a self-defeating activity carrying many negative consequences not least to the children themselves. They are being deprived of healthy exercise, the pleasures of social interaction with their school friends, the opportunity to act independently and the benefits of being in touch with the elements and seasonal change. For young minds and bodies these are losses not easily made up. Add to the deficit column of the balance sheet wider societal losses – increase traffic pollution, increase traffic congestion not to mention stress levels on drivers (often passed onto the children) – and the conclusion must be that the School Run is a bad thing.
For some parents especially those living in rural areas there is no alternative but for the vast majority the School Run is unnecessary – the children could walk or cycle to school by themselves – especially secondary age children. Walking to school or using public transport should be celebrated. Walking and cycling should be promoted within families as enjoyable activities.
Since we are now in the school summer holidays here is an ideal walk that has been enjoyed by families for generations.

Start/Finish: Broadwood Entrance Ingleton LA6 3ET

Distance: 4 ½ miles 9k

Time: 2½ - 4 hours

Grade: Moderate (unsuitable for wheelchairs and push chairs)

Map: OS OL 2 The Yorkshire Dales though not really required - the trail is well signed.


Map by kind permission of Johnston Press 

Note: I would normally stress that one of walking's greatest assets is that it is free but to gain access to the trail there is an entrance fee - £15.00 for a family ticket of two adults and three children which is still a lot cheaper than going to a theme park or the cinema.

1. From the car park a well-defined path leads besides the River Twiss into Swilla Glen. After crossing Manor Bridge the trail approaches the cascade of Pecca Falls a series of five waterfalls dropping 90 feet over sandstone and late.


Switching to the left bank at Pecca Bridge the path climbs steeply to open moorland beyond Hollybush Spout.


This more open aspect enhances the spectacle of the next waterfall - Thornton Force. Here the river plunges over 40feet over a limestone cliff.


The trail climbs above the waterfall and then crosses the river for the final time at Raven Ray Bridge.


There follows a stiff climb to reach the lane below Twisleton Scar.

2. If it is not obvious by the hordes of people turn right. Pass by Twisleton Farm


cross Oddie's Lane


to enter the farm yard at Beezleys. Following the waymarks


enter woodland above the River Doe. You quickly arrive at Beezley Falls.


Further along a descent can be made to a viewing bridge looking back into Baxenghyll Gorge. Returning to the main path cross the River Doe just after Snow Falls


and then enjoy the walk out as the trail clears the woods and passes through the old quarry workings


to reach Thacking Lane.


This leads onto the village. Turn right for your starting point.