70 Easy
Walks

All the walks shown below are considered “easy”. This means they are . . .

less than 12 km in length and less than 700m total ascent

Click on any of the walk titles or images below to see full details

6.3 miles | 10.2 km | 393 m Ascent | 8.3 Naismith miles | Alison Kinder / Colin Stroud
Sometimes our program works out such that we are in the same area for two consecutive walks – and that’s the case this time. This walk is at times no more than 200m from our recent Winster Valley walk, and at first we though that must be why a couple of locations looked familiar – we later realised that it is becase our equally excellent route at Lord’s Lot used a short section of the same paths from Spigot House to Bow Mabble Breast. What does separate this walk from the earlier Lords Lot walk is the weather – we were rather unlucky this time. Despite that, there is much to recommend this walk – easy parking, rivers and tarns, woodland, working farms and some great views. Even in the rain it’s well worth the effort.

7.1 miles | 11.5 km | 371 m Ascent | 9.0 Naismith miles | George Sheridan
Walking is a somewhat weather-dependant hobby, and this route demonstrates that clearly: When we completed our Grisedale and Garsdale walk in this area in June 2022, we enjoyed bright sunshine, walked over dry fields, and asked ourselves why bridges had been provided to cross mere trickles of streams. Fast forward to the wettest start to year that anyone can remember, and we see why the bridges are there – those same streams are now small rivers in full flow. So, does the rain spoil the experience? Not at all, it just gives us a different perspective: Wonderful waterfalls roar into life, mosses and lichens proliferate, and we get extra exercise jumping over streams and fighting to stay upright on muddy descents. Whatever the weather, this walk offers a great deal – we rate it as easy based on the distance and ascent but be aware that there are steep sections and in the event of poor conditions, extra care is needed.

5.7 miles | 9.2 km | 248 m Ascent | 6.9 Naismith miles | Peter Lennard
We start by Church Bridge, and then loop up onto the fell at South Lord’s Land before walking behind the village, with great views across the valley, and then over to Gawthrop, before crossing meadows to get to Barth Bridge. From there we pick up the Dales Highway long distance path and follow it up to Lunds where we walk on an ancient green lane for a while. We soon head right and onto North Lord’s Land looking across the valley with views of where we walked in the morning. Finally, we return to Barth Bridge via High Barth and then take a very quiet road walk on the North of the Dee before one more section through fields back to Church Bridge.

6.4 miles | 10.3 km | 335 m Ascent | 8.1 Naismith miles | Sandra Craggs
Kettlewell is one of the “Honey pot” villages in the Yorkshire Dales, and so during the peak of the tourist season, it gets rather crowded - and justifiably so – it’s a lovely place. However, if you pick a glowering day during February when the weather forecast is gloomy, not only will you have the pick of the parking places, but all the paths will be deserted and if the weather proves to be better than expected you will still get some great views. This walk takes us from Kettlewell up the Top Mere Road to Cam Head and then down Starbotton Cam Road into Starbotton. We then return along a riverside path enjoying typical Upper Wharfedale views. Although we class this walk as easy, based on the distance and total ascent, be aware that the first section is steep, though there are a couple of benches to take a rest.

5.0 miles | 8.1km | 164 m Ascent | 5.9 Naismith miles | Don Cartledge
This is one of our shorter walks – partly because we revised part of the route on the day to avoid flooding, and partly because sometimes it’s just nice to offer an easier route that can be used to fill a Sunday afternoon or a spare couple of hours on a balmy summer evening. Despite being quite compact, this walk packs a lot in – we get to see the dismantled railway line that once linked Ingleton and Sedbergh, via Barbon, we walk on a Roman road, pass a number of Andy Goldsworthy art installations, catch a distant glimpse of a stone circle, visit the beautiful Holy Trinity Church in Casterton, walk on the access road to coal mines that can be traced back to the reign of Charles I, and all still have time left to get some shopping in Kirkby.

7.2 miles | 11.6 km | 271 m Ascent | 8.6Naismith miles | Alison Kinder & Colin Stroud
Kendal styles itself as “The gateway to the Lakes”, and it is indeed a good base for those wishing to explore the southern end of the Lake District. The surrounding countryside also has much to offer in its own right– as we see in this walk. From convenient parking close to Oxenholme station, we start by climbing the Helm, gaining great views of the Lakeland Fells, the Howgills, and Morecambe Bay. From there we descend past an ancient fort, and a curious folly to pick up St Sunday’s Beck which we follow upstream to the delightful Bleasehall Wood. We note a syphon well before taking an isolated green lane to St Sunday’s Bridge and from there we head to Hawkrigg. The return leg involves a brief but quite steep climb up the aptly named Windy Hill, and then it’s a steady descent to the finish. We show this as an easy walk because it is (just) less than 12 km – but the consensus from the group was that it “feels more like a medium”.

6.9 miles | 11.0 km | 249 m Ascent | 8.1 Naismith miles | Mary Taylor
Bentham Footpath Group travel up to an hour or so to get to the start of our walks. This generally works well, but given that we already live in paradise, we sometimes find ourselves thinking – why not just stop here and just walk our own patch? So that’s exactly what we do on this walk. The Norber erratics are well known, and one of the “tick list” attractions in the Yorkshire Dales. The usual starting point would be Austwick – and we have in the past walked from there, but this route extends the day and gives us a chance to take in Clapham and Wharfe, as well as Austwick.

6.0 miles | 9.6 km | 205 m Ascent | 7.0 Naismith miles | Don Cartledge
A quick glance at our website shows that Levens is a firm favourite of the Bentham Footpath Group, and this easy walk demonstrates exactly why – it’s convenient to get to, offers easy walking, is packed with interesting locations, landscaped parks and industrial heritage, as well as offering stunning views back to the Yorkshire Dales, of the Kent estuary, and over to the Lake District fells. The route we present here overlaps in places with a number of our other walks – the great advantage of this is that you can use this as the basis for longer or more challenging days out by adding sections from the connecting routes.

4.1 miles | 6.6 km | 197 m Ascent | 5.1 Naismith miles |Alison Kinder / Colin Stroud
This walk was designed to be brief such that as a group we could meet as usual yet be finished in time to reconvene with friends and family at the Old Sawmill in Clapham for a convivial meal. Don’t go thinking that this walk is any the lesser for being short and sweet though – it goes far enough up Fell Lane (one of the routes up Ingleborough) to give good views of the peak, and we have Ingleton and the Lune Valley to enjoy too. A brief look at the OS map will show that this walk intersects with many other footpaths so there are ample opportunities to extend or modify the route – or simply enjoy it as it is: An easy but enjoyable walk that can be slotted into the day with minimal planning.

6.5 miles | 10.5 km | 155 m Ascent | 7.3 Naismith miles | George Sheridan
We head back to the Forest of Bowland for this great and relatively easy walk from the pretty village of Bolton by Bowland, creating a great opportunity to combine the walk with a visit to the village – which boasts two great pubs and a very interesting church. We start at a free car park next to the road bridge over Skirden Beck and then follow the beck upstream to Oak Trees Nursery. A short section on the road takes us up to Forest Becks, where we pick up Monubent Lane, which we follow as far as Monubent Head. From there we cross Fooden Moor until we get to Raygill Moss where we pick up the Ribble Valley Jubilee Trail. This takes us to Fooden, where we start to see the Ribble over to our left. We then follow the Ribble Valley down to the estate where Bolton Hall once stood and walk back into Bolton by Bowland via the estate grounds. We then stroll through the village, passing the church, the two greens and one of the pubs.

5.4 miles | 8.6 km | 249 m Ascent | 6.6 Naismith miles | Sandra Craggs
In recent walks we have travelled further afield and enjoyed some stunning scenery. Sometimes though, it’s nice to remind ourselves just how beautiful our own area is – and this walk is a perfect way to do that. This easy route is a shortened version of our earlier Giggleswick Scar walk and makes an ideal half day stroll. We start from The Mains in Settle and then head up to Stackhouse via Lord’s Wood. We then take the Pennine Journey path round the back of the scar, as if heading to Feizor, but before we get that far we find a fingerpost which indicates the path returning to the front of Giggleswick Scar. The top edge of the scar gives us great views to the south and lots of interesting limestone features including caves and cairns, before we arrive at the Schoolboy Tower. We then circle round the now disused quarry and then wrap things up by heading back down to Lord’s Wood and our cars. Two added benefits for this walk are that starting from Settle makes it accessible by Public Transport, and adding Elaine’s Tea Rooms would be an easy (2km) extension.

6.4 miles | 10.4km | 344 m Ascent | 8.2 Naismith miles | Mary Taylor
Members of the Bentham Footpath Group tend to consider the Yorkshire Dales, the Forest of Bowland, and the South Lakes as their walking territory. This relatively easy walk is at the North end of the Forest of Bowland and is very local to Bentham – so much so that many of the farms, and other buildings that we passed along the way hold important personal memories for those in the group lucky enough to be born and bred in and around Bentham. For the rest of us, this is still a great walk in a timeless landscape that never gets busy – despite the idyllic autumn weather we enjoyed, we passed no other walkers, and the only people we met all day were residents pottering in their gardens and making the most of the sunshine before winter sets in. Although we consider this walk to be “easy” based on the total distance and elevation change, you should be aware that Tatham Fells are poorly drained, and so the ground can be very wet. This can make the walk feel longer than stated but on the other hand wet weather makes the rivers and becks we cross so much more attractive.

5.3 miles | 8.5 km | 243 m Ascent | 6.5 Naismith miles | Alison Kinder & Colin Stroud
We are lucky enough to live in a location that gives us easy access to some of the most beautiful countryside in the UK, and we immediately think of the Lake District, the Yorkshire Dales, and the Forest of Bowland in this context. To that list we must surely add the Arnside and Silverdale Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB) – a compact but varied area that offers a wide variety of scenery, flora and fauna: One of the smallest AONBs, it covers just 75 km2 between the Kent Estuary, the River Keer and the A6. This easy walk starts from the ever popular seaside village of Arnside, then takes a route along the coastal fringe of the Kent Estuary, looping round to Morecambe Bay at Far Arnside before returning via Heathwaite and onto Arnside Knott with its fantastic viewpoint. We end with a view of the fabulous gnarled trees on the Knott – complete with artworks - before taking a woodland route back to Arnside.

6.3 miles | 10.2 km | 170 m Ascent | 7.2 Naismith miles | Peter Lennard
It’s easy to overlook Gargrave as you drive through on the A65, and it would be a mistake to do so: Gargrave is a great place to start a walk, with the added advantage that there are pubs, cafes, and an interesting variety of shops to enjoy. Parking is free and there are good quality public toilets. Still not convinced, then add a walk that includes the Leeds Liverpool canal, parts of the Pennine Way, Country houses, enchanting wells, great views of Sharp Haw, a peaceful memorial garden, a curiously ornate lime kiln, and weather station. Where else other than the Yorkshire Dales would you find so much interest in just six miles?

6.1 miles | 9.8 km | 261 m Ascent | 7.4 Naismith miles | Kate Rowe
One of the things that differentiates the Lake District from the Yorkshire Dales is the impervious nature of the rock, which means that lakes and tarns can form in valley bottoms – in the Dales water drains though the limestone. This easy walk focusses on tarns rather than lakes: Tarn Hows was originally three separate tarns, which after landscaping by a former landowner became one larger tarn with water levels controlled by an overspill which feeds a spectacular waterfall. Our route takes us up the side of that waterfall, round the tarns, then to the National Trust visitor centre before heading down through Tarn Hows Wood to Low Yewdale, then on to High Yewdale, over Shepherd’s Bridge, and then through Harry Guards Wood to Yew Tree Tarn. A lovely stroll around the tarn and then a short woodland section completes the walk.

6.8 miles | 11.0 km | 164 m Ascent | 7.6 Naismith miles | David & Sheila Longton
Think of Tolkein and Middle Earth, and many people will think of New Zealand – largely because The Lord of the Rings trilogy was filmed there. But where is Middle Earth in reality? We can all agree that Great Britain is the centre of the civilized world – nowhere eats more custard cream biscuits. We also know from our Dunsop Bridge walk that the centre of Great Britain is within the Forest of Bowland. When we find out that Tolkein stayed at Stonyhurst College near Clitheroe whilst writing his masterpiece, it all falls into place: Middle Earth is the route we walk here. We start at Hurst Green, then walk down to the banks of the Ribble, past the confluence with the Calder, upstream to the union with the Hodder, then along the Hodder to pick up a path through the grounds of Stonyhurst College to return to Hurst Green. This excellent easy walk takes less time than watching the films.

7.0 miles | 11.3 km | 140 m Ascent | 7.7 Naismith miles | Graham Cooper
Driving through Caton on the A683 is a frequent occurrence for those of us luck enough to live in or around Bentham, and so it’s easy to forget that Caton is a great place to start a walk. It offers easy access to the river Lune, and the Millenium Park path, or as our Claughton or Annas Ghyll Walks showed, the moors above Brookhouse. For this walk, we again start at Bull Beck and then take riverside paths down the Lune to the Crook O’Lune bridge before returning on the other side of the river using the millennium way. The route is a figure of 8 shape so there’s an obvious opportunity to split it into two shorter walks if time is pressing or you want to explore Halton or kill time lazing by the river.

4.5 miles | 7.2 km | 350 m Ascent | 6.5 Naismith miles | Alison Kinder / Colin Stroud
A good number of Bentham Footpath Groups walks have centred on Silverdale, and on those we always enjoy views over the Kent estuary toward Hampsfell. In this walk we climb Hampsfell and look the other way, using the viewing platform at the Hospice as our highpoint. We have walked in this area before, using Cartmel as our starting point offering a walk with moderate challenge, so this time we offer slight variation – we start from Grange over Sands and make the walk shorter and easier. The aim here is to give the opportunity to spend time in Grange exploring what this delightful town has to offer.

6.8 miles | 11.0 km | 215 m Ascent | 7.9 Naismith miles | Peter Lennard
Of the areas that Bentham Footpath Group walk, the Forest of Bowland is generally the quietest. That’s not to say it doesn’t have its hot spots though, and it’s at one of these – the Beacon Fell Country Park that we start this easy walk. The Country Park has a number of attractions all within a well defined and quite small boundary, so you could easily augment the walk by adding one or more of . . . a sculpture trail, orienteering challenges, waymarked walks around the site, a barbecue site, viewing points, and a visitor centre with café and toilets. The whole site is a Biological Heritage Site, so you may also see interesting and rare flora and fauna. Although we start at the Visitor Centre, we soon leave the site and head down to Brock Bottom, where we pick up the River Brock and head upstream passing Brockmill on the way to Gill Barn Wood. We then enjoy great views of Parlick and Fair Snape Fell before climbing back up to the Beacon Fell site where we wander around the Beacon.

7.1 miles | 11.4 km | 592 m Ascent | 10.0 Naismith miles | Bernie & Sheila Garrett
This excellent route showcases just what great walking country we have right on our doorstep. We start from Langcliffe, less than half an hour away from Bentham, and then fill the day with the kind of walking that you might see on one of those “celebrity buys some walking boots” TV shows. We head out of Langcliffe on the Pennine Journey path, hop over to the Pennine Bridleway, and then take a footpath up to Victoria Cave, which we explore for a while before walking along the base of the wonderful Attermire Scar. We follow that round, passing under the entrance to Horseshoe Cave, before heading over to Stockdale Lane with great views over to Pendle Hill, and Rye Loaf Hill. We then cut back along a footpath between High Hill and Sugar Loaf Hill to arrive at the base of the Warrendale Knotts. From here we retrace our outbound journey – although in this direction the views are surprisingly different -and then as a bonus treat, pop up to the smaller Jubilee Cave. The final part of the walk follows our outward route back to Langcliffe.

6.2 miles | 10.0 km | 321 m Ascent | 7.8 Naismith miles | George Sheridan
The Howgills are a great place to walk – and a firm favourite of the Bentham Footpath Group. The hills here are formed from Ordovician and Silurian rocks, rather than the Carboniferous limestone elsewhere in the Yorkshire Dales, giving them a characteristic rounded appearance and a lovely velvety texture. The Howgills are found in the triangle between Sedbergh, Kirkby Stephen and Tebay, and its to the latter that we go for this walk. We start in Tebay village, and then head up onto the hills following the edge of Tebay Fell to the south with great views over the valley to Borrowdale until we get to the peak of Blease Fell where the vista down the Lune Valley as far as Morecambe Bay makes the climb seem well worthwhile. We then head round the fell, and back over a flattish top via Hare Shaw cairn, Weather Hill, and Waskew Head to cross Tebaygill Beck at a picturesque stone bridge, before returning to Tebay.

4.5 miles | 7.3 km | 117 m Ascent | 5.1 Naismith miles | Kate Rowe
During the summer months, Bentham Footpath Group generally offers a walk in the evening – the aim is to take a short and easy stroll out of the heat of the afternoon sun, ideally with a brilliant sunset as a backdrop. Things don’t always work out as we plan though – so although this is a great walk, the weather was not ideal, and our focus shifted to rainbows, brooding skies, unseasonably early fungi and unexpected streams – all equally beautiful in their own way. Shorter walks mean that it makes sense to start nearer to home, so we set off from Keasden Church just 5 miles from Bentham, and then took a meandering route made up of three intersecting loops – hence the name “Keasden Wander”. Each of those loops offers an opportunity to shorten the route, or indeed to connect with other paths to extend it, so as well as being a good walk in its own right, this route can be the basis for a longer full day of walking.

6.7 miles | 10.8 km | 346 m Ascent | 8.5 Naismith miles | Terri Kwiecinska
In April this year, Bentham Footpath Group enjoyed a great walk at Storth and Arnside - that walk starts with a great view over the Kent estuary toward Whitbarrow Scar. This time we are on the other side of the estuary climbing Whitbarrow Scar and exploring the interesting geology of the area. Whitbarrow Scar is designated as a Site of Special Scientific Interest, a National Nature Reserve, and a Special Area of Conservation, but still manages to offer easily accessible walks without being too crowded. The route we take is loosely based on the Whitbarrow Geotrail – you can purchase a booklet describing that at the starting point. If geology is not your thing don’t worry – there are great views, fossils, birds of prey, abundant wildflowers, monuments, abandoned mines, forest trails, and newts to be seen too.

7.2 miles | 11.6 km | 261 m Ascent | 8.5 Naismith miles | Kate Rowe
In January 2023, Bentham Footpath Group enjoyed a fine walk from Appersett exploring parts of the Hawes 2000 Mosaic project. We saw about half of the 22 mosaics on that day, and we finish the task with this equally fine walk. Starting from Hawes town centre, we head up to Burtersett, take Shaws Lane to Gayle, then head up Sleddale to see Aysgill Force. We return along a Green Lane back toward Gayle, before taking a final detour along Bands Lane and then the Cam Road. A (very) brief section on the B6255 brings us to a path back over fields into Hawes. This is a great walk with fine views, add in the mosaics, a roman road, an impressive waterfall, and all the delights of Hawes, and we have a recipe for a perfect day.