Monday, 2 November 2009

A-Walking: Richmond Rustler

The Catterick area is probably most well known for horse racing and its close-by army barracks. However, for walkers and outdoor enthusiasts it is also a useful starting point for walks along the River Swale - and the access it provides into Swaledale. Today's expedition took us from Catterick Bridge to the town of Richmond via Brompton-on-Swale, Skeeby, Gilling West, Willance's Leap and East Applegarth.

We set off from our drop-off point (near the junction of the A6136 and B6271 roads) {SE 225 999} at about 10.14 am. There were 6 people in the group: PB, KF, CH, LM, JY and PY. PB led the walk.

Following the A6136 in a southerly direction we made our way to the road bridge over the River Swale (see picture below) where we turned right onto a footpath at {SE 227 994}. From here we headed in a westerly direction along the river bank. After passing under the old railway bridge (see here) and then under Agricola Bridge (see here),we skirted around the south-western edge of Brompton-on-Swale in order to reach the B6271 road at {SE 215 997}. Turning left, we walked along the road for about 490 yards in order to find a footpath on our right at Brompton Bridge {SE 212 999}. This path took us in a north-westerly direction to Union House {NZ 202 016} and then on to the village of Skeeby {NZ 198 025}.

Catterick Bridge
We left Skeeby on a north-westerly path that took us to Gascoigne Farm {NZ 196 033}. Staying on our north-westerly bearing, we went along the western side of Gilling Beck in order to reach the small village of Gilling West {NZ 183 052}. As the weather conditions were so bad, we had our lunch stop here - in a bus-shelter near the church {NZ 182 051}. Just as we were finishing our lunch, the B-group arrived so we hastily vacated our shelter so that they could make use of it.

From the church we made a south-westerly trek across the fields and along Old Hall Lane to {NZ 174 045}. Now changing to a north-westerly bearing we passed through The Ashes and then entered Gilling Wood at {NZ 160 050} on a south-westerly bearing. We had a good climb through the wood along a well-defined track. While we were in the wood, the trees provided some good cover - both from the wind and the rain.

We emerged from Gilling Wood onto a minor road at {NE 155 046} and turned left along it. After about 65 yards we turned right onto a south-westerly going path along the northern edge of Black Plantation. Maintaining our south-westerly bearing, we arrived at a path junction at {NZ 141 034}. At this point we entered a wood (Beacon Plantation) on Richmond Out Moor. We made a southerly trek through the wood so as to reach a minor road near the aerial masts at {NZ 139 024} (see here). From here we went across the fields to reach the monument at Willance's Leap {NZ 136 021} - see the picture below. We had some good views of the River Swale and the surrounding landscape from here.

Willance's Leap
Leaving the monument on a westerly bearing, we followed the high ground around to {NZ 129 024}. We were exposed to some very strong winds during this section of the walk - so much so, it was, on occasions, difficult to maintain an upright position. When we reached the road (see here), we swung onto a southerly bearing and descended into the valley in the direction of Low Applegarth. At {NZ 129 017} we turned left onto a path that took us in an easterly direction to East Applegarth (see here) and Whitecliffe Wood. While in the wood, we decided to take advantage of the shelter it offered and had a short tea stop at {NZ 144 015}.

We emerged from the wood at {NZ 146 014} and made our way to High Leases and Whitcliffe Farm. There were some good views of Richmond Castle (see the picture below) as we made our way along the lane. Just after the farm, at {NZ 154 015}, we turned right into Green Lane and descended to the A6108 road at {NZ 155 008}. From here we made our way through the caravan park and re-joined the A6108 road at {NZ 161 011}. We followed this in an easterly direction into the centre of Richmond where our expedition ended in the car park at {NZ 168 011}.

Richmond Castle
When we set off today the weather conditions were pretty bad - and the numbers on the coach reflected this. We were exposed to very strong winds and incessant heavy rain. However, by late afternoon (as we approached Willance's Leap) the rain stopped, the sun appeared and we had some lovely light-blue sky. Nevertheless, despite these improvements in the weather, the strong winds stayed with us for the rest of the walk. Even though the conditions were not what we might have chosen, we had a really great day.

Use the buttons below to see where we went, how we did and a few of the sights that we saw.




Post a Comment

Subscribe to Post Comments [Atom]

<< Home