Wharfedale is the valley of the upper parts of the River Wharfe and one of the Yorkshire Dales. It is situated within the districts of Craven and Harrogate in North Yorkshire, and the cities of Leeds and Bradford in West Yorkshire. It is the upper valley of the River Wharfe. Towns and villages in Wharfedale (downstream, from west to east) include Buckden, Kettlewell, Conistone, Grassington, Hebden, Bolton Abbey, Addingham, Ilkley, Burley-in-Wharfedale, Otley, Pool-in-Wharfedale, Arthington, Collingham and Wetherby. Beyond Wetherby, the valley opens out and becomes part of the Vale of York.
The section from the river’s source to around Addingham is known as Upper Wharfedale and lies in North Yorkshire and in the Yorkshire Dales National Park. The first 15 miles (24 km) or so is known as Langstrothdale, including the settlements of Beckermonds, Yockenthwaite and Hubberholme, famous for its church, the resting place of the writer J. B. Priestley. As it turns southwards, the Wharfe then runs through a green and lush valley, with limestone outcrops, such as Kilnsey Crag, and woodland, generally quite unusual in the Dales.
Below Addingham, the dale broadens and turns to the east. This section is shared between North Yorkshire and West Yorkshire and includes the towns of Ilkley, Otley and Wetherby. The northern side of Lower Wharfedale, opposite Ilkley, Burley-in-Wharfedale and Otley, is in the Nidderdale Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty.
The Yorkshire Dales Rivers Trust has a remit to conserve the ecological condition of Wharfedale, Wensleydale, Swaledale and Nidderdale catchments from their headwaters to the Humber Estuary.
This year the Club’s “weekend away” will be centred on the picturesque village of Kettlewell in beautiful Wharfedale in the Yorkshire Dales.
The event will run from Friday 13th to Sunday 15th June and will feature organised walks on both the Saturday and the Sunday, as well as social “partying” after each day’s walk in the local hostelry(s). The initial get-together will be at the Bluebell Inn, 7–8 pm on the Friday. Transport is NOT provided so please make your own travel arrangements!
A range of accommodation is available in Kettlewell village, including rooms with comfortable en-suite facilities, chiefly at the Bluebell Inn and the Racehorses Hotel but there are several other GH’s, B&B’s and Self Catering places around the village; there’s also a Youth Hostel plus basic camping at the “turn up & pitch” site nearby the village (only £5 per night). Regarding accommodation, please make your own arrangements! The village website: www.kettlewellvillage.co.uk is quite useful but if further help is needed in finding a place to stay, please feel free to contact Alan on 01325 488225 who’ll be happy to assist.
If the weather behaves (why shouldn’t it?) this promises to be a cracking good weekend in a location famed for its dramatic scenery, with excellent walking in prospect – and in the friendliest of company!
This is a reminder of the next walk and to provide a walk sheet with booking instructions.
2010 November Wharfedale