Gunnerside 10 Mile Circular Walk (with pubs)

This walk was supposed to be done from Gunnerside, to Reeth taking in the lower path that we decided not to take on our Coast to Coast walk, however we decided we didn’t want to wait for the bus to from Reeth to Gunnerside so drove straight to Gunnerside and thought we would do a circular walk.

We nipped into the Kings Head for a pint (the delicious Askrigg Ale) and what turned out to be the biggest sarnie (swaledale cheese and chutney) and most tasty chips we’ve had in a long time…all for a fiver too.

PLEASE NOTE THE KINGS HEAD IS NOW CLOSED (12/06/13) so it’s worth detouring to the farmers arms at Muker for refreshment

Memorial Sword on our walk from gunnerside

Memorial sword

The walk starts directly opposite the pub, by taking the public footpath on the right hand side of the bridge, follow the stream keeping it on your left hand side, The path winds it’s way easily up Gunnerside Gill, passing lots of lovely waterfalls and old mine buildings. Before gently climbing to some more workings and a memorial cairn, which unusually had an Excalibur like sword poking out of the top.

From here head up to the signpost just up the hill which marks a cross road, this bit we had done in the opposite direction on the Coast to Coast a few weeks back so we knew what to expect. Go straight past this until you reach a small cairn on your left, follow the path down to the buildings below, one of which used to be a peat store for the mines.

Waterfall on our walk from gunnerside

One of the many waterfalls

Cross the stone slab bridge over the river then cross the next bit of river, It was a lot lower than last time we crossed it was easy to step across, if the river is in spate you may need to head further upstream where it’s a bit narrower in order to cross.

Once over the water continue along the track until the path branches off to the left and one bends up the hill to the right, take this path up the hill  through lownathnwaite mea and follow it until you reach a broad stony track. Turn right along this track.

This is the track that will lead you to Swinner Gill, along the way you will pass a Coast to Coast sign on your right, a shooting box and some grouse butts on your left, you will also need to cross a style in a fence just before Swinner Gill.

As the track descends  down winner Gill take the path to the right,that runs across a small stream it’s a little boggy so watch your step, follow the posts until you get to the less boggy path. At this point you can either scramble down path next to the waterfalls or take the slightly higher path which runs parallel to them, descending down to some more old lead mine buildings.

You will soon cross a lovely stone mining bridge, just after the bridge there is a signpost, one path is signposted Keld, the other Muker, take the one to Muker that follows the left track down  through the Gill.

View up the valley on our walk from gunnerside

View up the valley

After a few minutes walk and a bit of descent you will come to a point where you can choose which way you’d like to go, either cross over the stream and follow the path up, over a stile and around the edge of the hill or take the path up right, through a gap in the fence and then follow the path as it descends to by the river Swale.

We chose to cross the stream and go over the stile, following the path round before descending to the river Swale.

Follow the footpath along the river, keeping it on your right, Here we were really lucky to see a kingfisher and a herron along with a whole load of rabbits. The path goes through Ivelet then continues along the river back into Gunnerside. There are lots of styles during this section of the walk, some will be unsuitable for big dogs, there were also a lot of cows in the fields, which didn’t seem to happy to see us. This could have been because they had calves and as luck would have it they were in the way of the gate on more than one occasion.

It’s a really lovely walk with some dramatic scenery, lots of waterfalls and some lovely old mine buildings, well worth checking out if you are in the area.

After the walk we headed to the Bridge Inn at Grinton, which we had visited during our Coast to Coast, their food is fabulous and they always have 4 handpulled ales on, again well worth a visit if you are in the area, although be prepared for a wait at busy times.

If you would like to download the GPX file of this walk please click here (zipped).

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