Header Image


Welcome to the Wild Yorkshire Way website, the culmination of a 4 year outdoor project.

The Wild Yorkshire Way is a "hop on, hop off" circular long distance hike of about 526 miles, taking in some of Yorkshire's finest and wildest scenery, including parts of the Pennine Way, Yorkshire Three Peaks, Coast to Coast Walk, Cleveland Way, Yorkshire Wolds Way and Trans Pennine Trail. Use the interactive map on the right to explore the route, and choose a section to tackle. Very few people will attempt the entire route in one go, but you can enjoy sections of the route, or even single day walks, and slowly complete the walk by filling in the missing sections.

The route prefers high and wild terrain wherever possible, although the wildest and hardest sections usually have easier alternatives. You will notice that several day walks start and end at pubs, which is of course entirely intentional. This site is now just about complete, as I have completed the project, but I want to tackle the entire route in one go in May/June 2019, so watch this space...

If you want to know how your data is used on this site, along with other legal information, please refer to the Legal section of the site.

Fellow Walkers

It seems several fellow walkers enjoy combining their love of the countryside, especially Yorkshire, with web design. Here's some links to some other websites you will surely find interesting: -
v-g Backpacking in Britain - A good account of backpacking trips in Britain, with some useful info on wild camping.
Yorkshire Walks - A great collection of Yorkshire routes to try.
The Walking Englishman - A site covering the whole of the UK but with great coverage of Yorkshire.
Please use my Feedback Form if you want a link to your site on here. If you're a pub, you'll have to promise me a free pint first.

Thank You

I've had a lot of help with this project, both technically and out in the field on the route. Many thanks and acknowledgements to the following: -

ABI Electronics Ltd of Dodworth, Barnsley for providing free web hosting and expert help and advice, especially from Gareth and Shaun. Thanks to all at ABI.

Ordnance Survey for their wonderful OpenSpace API mapping system, allowing me to include their 1:50000 maps on my site with my route overlaid.

Streetmap.co.uk for allowing links to the detailed 1:25000 maps on their site free of charge.

Alistair, for his expert help on web design and software for many projects over the years, culminating in this one.

Sarah (and Rebel) for help on researching the initial stages of the walk in my home territory, particularly the pubs on the route, and also for carrying my rucksack (with hers inside it) when my plastic knee ligament got a bit fed up.

Lindsay, for help in internet research, for being my emergency contact when I'm out on my own, for booking hotels and taxis, checking pub menus and opening times, and dishing out strict dietary advice while I'm on the Way.

Lastly, and of course most importantly, my German wife Susi, for her help in researching the Yorkshire Wolds Way section, again paying particular attention to the pubs on the route! Ta luv x

Zuletzt, aber natürlich auch am wichtigsten, meine deutsche Frau Susi, für ihre Hilfe beim Forschen auf dem Yorkshire Wolds Way, schon wieder mit besonderer Aufmerksamkeit bei den Pubs auf dem Weg! Danke Schatzi x

Legal Stuff

All information on this website is given in good faith, and I can't accept any responsibility for any errors or omissions, nor can I accept responsibility for accidents or injuries sustained while following my route.

Wild Yorkshire Way, Copyright © 2016 - 2019 Ian Fletcher unless otherwise stated. All photos on this site are my own taken on the route, Copyright © 2013 - 2019 Ian Fletcher. If you wish to use any photo(s), please send me a high resolution photograph of a tenner. It used to be a fiver, but inflation takes its toll everywhere.

Wild Yorkshire Way Route Map

Latest News

09/07/2018 - Filling In The Gaps

Even though I've completed the entire walk on the main route, there still remain a few of the alternatives that I've got to tackle. One of these was the easy 21 mile stretch from West Burton to Masham, via the racehorse training capital of Yorkshire - Middleham. This is a pleasant climb out of West Burton on the flank of the last remaining Dales hills, then we leave the Dales and head across Middleham gallops where the horses are in training. After a pleasant stay in the lovely village of Middleham the walk takes you along the banks of the Rive Cover, then the Ure, to the beer lovers paradise town of Masham. A lovely walk which a strong walker could complete in a day, with many opportunities for liquid rewards n Masham.

10/12/2017 - That's it, finished!

526 miles, 4 years in planning and execution, feet up and beer time. Finally finished the walk, and loved every minute of it!

01/12/2017 - Just Over 1 Mile To Go!

Right, I'm almost there now! In freezing cold weather, I completed a 3 day 46 mile plod along the Trans Pennine Trail from Barmby on the Marsh to Denaby Ings in late November 2017. I had intended to camp, and indeed I did camp at Barmby Barrage on the first night, courtesy of the lock keeper Mr Taylor who allowed me to pitch for the night. However, a full bladder (the after effects of a few pints in the lovely Kings Head at Barmby) meant I need to get up out of my tent a couple of times in the night, in temperatures below zero. So I wasn't looking forward to a second night in my tent, and succumbed to temptation at the George Inn in Selby, where I stayed for two pleasant nights. So I've now completed 525 out of 526 miles of the route. Thank you to Sarah for giving me a lift to Barmby, to Mr Taylor for allowing me to camp at Barmby Barrage, to the lady in The Kitchen in Snaith for a free mince pie, and to Angels Taxi in Barnby Dun for ferrying me around and looking after my unused camping equipment while I was staying at the George Inn. Just over a mile to go, the short climb from Kilburn to the famous White Horse, then it's finally over and the walk is complete!

28/11/2017 - Nearly There!

Despite setting myself the target of finishing the walk this summer, I've still got 3 days and a bit left to do. Poor performance, I know, but that's what happens when you choose the same summer to move house and spend some time overseas with one's German wife! Anyway, I still want to finish it this year, even though I end up walking in snow (I love snow, did you know that?). I've got 3 easy flat sections to do, starting at the Kings Head in Barmby on the Marsh, heading through Selby to Hirst Courtney, then on through pleasant countryside to Thorpe in Balne, then the last of the 3 days to Denaby Ings. And that's it....or is it? Well no it isn't. Not quite. Despite all my advice here about wearing in new boots, I suffered badly with blisters on my 4 day trek in June from West Burton to the White Horse at Kilburn. I decided against posting pictures on here, but trust me they hurt. The official end point of my walk was the White Horse, above Kilburn village, but it didn't work out that way. On arriving at the Forresters Arms in Kilburn on a hot and sunny Friday afternoon, tired, sweaty, pain-ridden and exhausted after battling through farmland on non-existent paths, the multiple attractions of the pub soon took their toll. I could remove my boots, get a nice cold pint, have a shower, eat a nice meal and enjoy probably the best pub on the entire walk. It was no contest, and I had a most delightful evening chatting in the bar with one of the nicest people out of the hundreds I've met on the Wild Yorkshire Way. So in short, I missed out a bit of the walk. So after I've made it to Denaby Ings, it's back to the Forresters Arms for a couple of nights to enjoy more superb hospitality and a short climb of about 150m in 1.5 miles (yes I know, mixed units!) to the famous White Horse. I've challenged Ellie from the pub to a race to the top, but with a handicap. I just have to walk up. She has to run up, run back down, and run back up again. She's about 40 years younger than me, so she'll win easily. Unless I cheat.......

02/08/2017 - Walking in Flatland

Another 2 days on the Way completed, this time from Welton to Barmby on the Marsh, along the banks of the Humber and Ouse. With no contours to contend with, the walking is easy, but sometimes dreary as the lack of long distance views gives you a feeling of not getting anywhere. Another issue which is new to me is the lack of definite objectives on a walk - on most walks you have a fixed aim, like a summit, where you can have a rest, eat a sandwich, admire the view (or the fog) and generally feel a sense of achievement. This just doesn't happen in flatland, as every step is the same. The best I can manage is to regard a pub as a major objective, but it's a poor second to a high isolated peak. Nope, once I've finished I doubt if I'll be walking here again, if you're not a purist I'd take the bus/train from Welton to Barnsley and call it a day. Fortunately, I'm a purist.

20/06/2017 - Let's Get Going!

After several skiing trips in the winter, one curtailed by a broken wrist after a failed attempt to fly on some steps in Innsbruck railway station, it was finally time to get back to the serious business of completing the Wild Yorkshire Way. I've got 125 miles to go, so I set off on Tuesday 20th June to tackle the 62 mile section from West Burton to Kilburn with its famous White Horse. This walk includes the low level crossing from the Dales to the North York Moors - a high, wild and boggy traverse over Buckden Pike and Great Whernside, where I camped wild for the night, then a tough featureless moorland crossing to Healey, just about the toughest section of the entire Way. A low level ramble followed until Kilburn, lovely to start with but with some unavoidable road walking and paths blocked by farmers later, before a well earned pint, delicious food and good conversation in the Foresters Arms in Kilburn.

18/06/2017 - Navigation Exercise

As a warm up for the summer season, I recently headed out with Sarah and Rebel from Holme Moss to join the original Pennine Way on Black Hill, as part of navigation and map reading training for Sarah who is doing the Pennine Way this summer. I last did this walk in 1982, and it's tough, some of the hardest walking there is. Deep peat bogs, critical direction finding problems in bad weather, and endless detours to avoid water and black oozing liquid goo that looks like it just came out of the oil sump on a 50 year old tractor having its first service. Fortunately, the weather was kind to us, but my advice is to use the current Pennine Way from Black Hill to Black Moss Reservoir if the weather, or your navigation ability, is dodgy. After the Saddleworth Road A635 there's a paved path which greatly improves this section, so don't give up while trudging along the flanks of Dean Head Hill.

16/10/2016 - Winter Shutdown

I didn't manage to complete my walk in 2016, which was my aim, and I've still got 125 miles to go. This was mainly due to mechanical problems, especially with my knees and ankles, but after my winter shutdown I'll be back in the spring of 2017 to finish off the Wild Yorkshire Way. I'll be visiting my second home this winter, the high Austrian Alps, where I'll be doing my winter training to get fit and raring to go next spring to finish off my walk. Of course, much of the training will take place in après ski bars and mountain huts, but it still counts, obviously.

09/09/2016 - Mapping and Tracking

When you're out walking, do you sometimes send texts or messages to friends and family, to let them know where you are and that you're safe? I know I do, especially when I'm walking alone. On the Mapping page you can continuously record your position on a walk, so your friends can see where you are and track your progress on a map on their phone, tablet or laptop. Of course, you need an internet connection for it to work, and you need to enable JavaScript. It won't work on Google Chrome™ as they have decided that your location is private, without asking you what you think. Why not try it out and let me have some feedback?

19/07/2016 - Elevation Profile

New on the Route page is a complete elevation profile for the entire route, showing the summits, valleys, end points and other landmarks on the walk. You can click or tap tags on the profile to see where you are.

07/07/2016 - GPX Data

Several walkers have asked about GPX files for the route, so they can use their sat nav devices. I've done some work on this, and GPX files are now available for download for each stage on the main route. These are as accurate as possible, but I can't accept any responsibility for any mistakes - in particular the elevation data can be suspect, especially on coastal routes where the path follows the cliff top with a sheer drop only feet away. Any feedback on the files and their usability will be most welcome.

20/06/2016 - The northern Dales

Starting on Monday 21st June, I completed a 6 day section of the Wild Yorkshire Way from Horton-in-Ribblesdale to West Burton, in great weather and with fantastic views as I hope my photos will show. I met some lovely people along the way and had a great time researching the route. As a result, there will be some changes coming up. One annoying issue is that while many paths are well marked on maps, they are not always obvious on the ground. This is particularly true away from the well-known sections of the Coast to Coast and Three Peaks walks, as for example on Mallerstang Edge, and climbing up from Reeth on the crossing to Wensleydale. Also, the 2 day 25 mile section from Walden Head to Healey, via Buckden Pike, Great Whernside and Little Whernside, is extremely tough and boggy, so I've decided to find an easier alternative for this section. As ever, work is in progress......

29/05/2016 - Wembley Play-Off Final

Congratulations to Barnsley FC on a convincing victory over Millwall in the League One Play-Off Final at Wembley. Goals early on from Fletcher and a worldy from Hammill gave Barnsley a 2-0 lead, before another Barnsley lad Beevers pulled one back. A towering header from Isgrove, the smallest player on the field, made the last few minutes safe. With the victory, Barnsley return to the Championship at the second attempt, to join Sheffield Wednesday who secured their Championship place the day before against Hull City. Congratulations to Barnsley FC!

30/04/2016 - New Routes from Back Tor

After considerable research, I've now suggested new routes from Back Tor to Holme Moss. The main route is wild, at times pathless and boggy, and should not be attempted in bad weather. The first alternative drops down to easy walking in the Derwent Valley, but does require a climb back up to Shepherds Meeting Stones to rejoin the main route. The second alternative is a pub route, visiting the Old Mustard Pot in Midhopestones, the Waggon and Horses in Langsett and the Dog and Partridge on the Woodhead Pass. It's a long day, so I would advise you split it into 2 so you can enjoy the pubs, and since it's near my home I may even join you for a pint!

22/04/2016 - Ringinglow to Holme Moss

Having completed a 2 day walk from Ringinglow, it has become apparent that day 4 needs a bit of a re-think. Day 3 is a magnificent edge walk, ending with a wild camp at Back Tor, but the route from Back Tor is a hard slog over wild moorland, initially with no path, waist deep peat bogs and tussocks of ankle-breaking grass. It's not suitable for many walkers and could be dangerous in bad visibility. Not only that - it doesn't end at a pub. Because of this I'm going to re-design this bit of the walk, probably via Langsett, and I'll update the route on here when finished.

14/04/2016 - Photo Uploads

Following many requests you can now upload photos up to 10M in size by using the Contact page on the website. Thanks to Gareth at ABI for help with this. Please can you resize any large images below 10M before attempting to upload.

03/04/2016 - Barnsley 3 Oxford United 2

Barnsley came out on top against an impressive Oxford side in a thrilling match at Wembley in the 2016 Johnstone's Paint Trophy Final, which is like the FA Cup Final only for more tinpot clubs. Congratulations to all connected with Barnsley Football Club and commiserations to Oxford, who despite playing in the league below scared the life out of Barnsley in the first half. Well done lads!

27/02/2016 - Route Mapping

I've now added 1:50000 and 1:25000 scale maps to the route description for each stage, courtesy of the excellent Ordnance Survey OpenSpace API service and Streetmap.co.uk. To access the maps, go to the Route page and select a stage by clicking on the picture, then click the map buttons on either the start or end places to display the map around this point. The 1:50000 summary maps show the route, and the 1:25000 detail maps are ideal for navigation. You can zoom and pan to any point in the UK, but of course you'll not want to pan away from Yorkshire!

14/02/2016 - Feedback and Photos

You can now send feedback and upload photos via the Contact page on the website. I'll try and use your photos if any are suitable, but please let me know where they are on the route, so I know where to put them.

10/02/2016 - Route Summary Complete

I've now completed the entire route in summary form, with start/stop points each day and distances, so you can get an idea of the complete journey. Full descriptions, transport connections, pubs and photographs will be slowly filled in as work progresses. All information subject to change as I research more of the proposed route.

14/12/2015 - Website Launch

The Wild Yorkshire Way long distance circular walk is a personal project. This site is under development, and in time I hope to get contributions, photos, route and accommodation tips and comments from fellow walkers. If any of the links don't work, it's my fault, do not adjust your browser.

Going the Whole Hog!

Full Route Map My 526 mile marathon on the Wild Yorkshire Way is now complete, but there's something missing.....after much planning, 526 miles of walking, the long journey to complete my circular Wild Yorkshire Way walk, and document the route on this website, is complete. Or is it??? The journey started in June 2013, with the Pennine Way section between Black Hill in Derbyshire and Horton in Ribblesdale. In 2014 it was the entire Cleveland Way section from the White Horse to Filey, then in 2015 the Wolds Way from Filey to North Ferriby. Following closely on from that in 2015 was the section on the Coast to Coast walk from Nine Standards Rigg to Reeth, then finally I filled in all the missing bits in various treks in 2016 and 2017. If you're interested (and you must be, otherwise you wouldn't have got this far) you can see a summary here. The White Horse of Kilburn was a fitting end to the walk, and the Forresters Arms in Kilburn a fitting venue to celebrate in the magical pre-Christmas atmosphere by a log fire in December 2018.

So what's missing? Well, in 2019 I'm going to tackle the entire route again, in 1 go. Yep, in one complete stretch, I'm going to go the whole hog, do the Full Monty! It may be the last chance I get to do such a long walk, at my age, with dodgy knees and flagging energy. I'm going to do it "against the clock", heading out east towards Hull from the start at Stainborough Cricket Club, as there's 6 days of easy flat walking to get toned up, before the first hill on the Wolds Way section near Welton. I'll probably do it for charity, but don't worry, it will only be a penny a mile. I may give up, I may keel over, but I'll give it a go. I hope to do this in May/June 2019, so there's plenty of time to get fit in the Alps this winter. Please be prepared to donate £5.26 to my chosen charity, when I finish the walk.

I've loved doing the walk. I've met some fabulous people, and I've gained some new social media friends of all ages. I've built up a fantastic library of over 1500 photos for my gallery - and they're a unique and personal record of my trip. I've seen all weathers, camped out in summer and winter, and of course I've been to some magnificent country pubs. I've slept in mountain huts, ruined farm buildings, summit shelters, out in the open, and of course in my tent. I've travelled on buses, trains and taxis to get around, and I've cadged lifts from complete strangers. I've seen some of the best sides of human nature when I've been injured or ill at times on the Way. I've loved it! That's why I want to do it again.

Any negative thoughts? Well, a couple. On most long-distance walks, the route in places is "contrived", so that good walking stretches can be linked up into a continuous route. You'll notice this on the Pennine Way, and the well known 20 mile lowland stretch on the Coast to Coast Walk from Richmond to Ingleby Cross. The Cleveland Way and the Wolds Way are notable exceptions to this, as they're in beautiful countryside for their entire lengths. On the Wild Yorkshire Way, the geography of Yorkshire dictates 2 low-level sections - a 2 day walk from Healey to Kilburn to cross from the Dales to the Moors, and a long 6 day slog along the Trans Pennine Trail from Welton to Stainborough to complete the circular route. On these sections, there are no notable "targets" such as summits, where we all like to stop and take in the views. Some paths can be described by "slog", "trudge" and "plod". I'm not keen, but I've still enjoyed the experience. Another negative is the habit of a tiny minority of landowners, who believe they can flout the law by blocking paths and discouraging walkers. As I write here, it won't work.

Always end on a positive. It's been the experience of a lifetime for me, and I'm looking to walking the entire route in reverse in 2019. Your feedback is always welcome. Happy walking to you all in 2019!