Yorkshire Dales Walks
Date: 18th May 2004
Distance: 8.3 miles
Ascent: 1627 feet
Time: Too long ago to remember!
Start Grid Ref: SE077551
A there and back walk to the top of Simon's Seat via the Valley of Desolation.
Route Summary: Cavendish Pavilion - Valley of Desolation - Simon's Seat - Lord's Seat - Valley of Desolation - Cavendish Pavillion
1. The view down into Wharfedale from Simon's Seat
2. Matt by the trig point on Simon's Seat
3. The heathery slopes of Barden Fell from Simon's Seat
4. On Lord's Seat with Simon's Seat behind me
5. One of the hidden waterfalls of the Valley of Desolation
Walk Detail: I was a bit dubious about this walk when Matt suggested it mainly because it was not really a circular walk and I didn’t like the idea of retracing my steps to such a large extent.
I needn’t of worried as this was a really pleasant walk; the Valley of Desolation contains two delightful waterfalls that can be discovered making short detours off the main path.
The moors themselves were our first real experience on walking on upland moors with lots of heather and foamy peat soil underfoot. There was also the strange phenomena of hundreds of millipedes crossing the path, something I have only ever seen in this area.
Simon’s Seat is really the name of the rocky outcrop at the highest point of Barden Fell. While it is by no means the highest fell in the Dales it commands some superlative views. The drop down to Appletreewick and Wharfedale is quite dramatic and a number of the local reservoirs can also be seen.
I remember being particularly annoyed on getting home to discover that a number of the pictures I had taken did not come out properly because the camera had slipped into macro mode without me realising it. This happened a few times with the Fuji that first year of walking.