Lesley Tate lovelywalks by the side of Lindley Wood Reservoir, Norwood, and into the woods, crossing historic Dob Park packhorse bridge

I VENTURED over into my old stomping ground in Lower Wharfedale for this walk taking in yet another of Yorkshire Water's reservoirs. Unlike some of the other, more popular sites, Lindley Wood reservoir is far less busy with walkers - very likely because of the limited parking in the area. For those - and I admit I am one - who don't like to see hoards of other people out walking, it is a relatively quiet walk, but with plenty to see.

It is a linear walk, so you will at the end, turn around and come back the way you came - its not something I usually like to do, but the route I had planned seemed to have more cattle about than I was comfortable with, particularly with two dogs along. However, it is a very nice walk and has the added bonus of the ancient, grade two listed, 400 year old Dob Park packhorse bridge, and picks up the Six Dales Trail - more of which I intend to investigate in future weeks. Parking for this walk is limited to on road, and there are plenty of cattle about - so beware if you are taking a dog along. There is also a goodly amount of boggy ground to negotiate - so sturdy footwear is wise. Finally, if parking means you have to walk over the bridge to the start of the walk, be very careful about the traffic, the road on the bridge is fairly narrow.

1 From the Farnley side of the reservoir bridge, take the footpath next to the reservoir, so the water is on your right. Continue along the obvious path as it follows alongside the reservoir and opens out.

2 Continue on footpath as it crosses over the River Washburn and over a stile into a field. Keep to the right of the field, keeping a wary eye out for cattle, and pass through a gate and continue along path, now with Washburn on your left. At the end of the obvious track, go over the stile on the left and head towards Dobpark packhorse bridge.

3 Go over bridge, or splash through the ford, and then right , almost straight away, to join the Six Dales Trail, with the river back on your right. Continue along track and into another field, and at top left hand corner, go through a metal gate, with a walker's gate in it. In the field, stick closely to the right hand side and follow boundary to woodland. Go over stile, and drop down, over beck.

4 Take the path to the right - leaving the Six Dales Trail, which temptingly heads off through the woods. The path drops down and goes through a gate into a very boggy area. There are way markers, but you want to bear right and get yourself through the boggy woodland as best as possible. You will come to a field, cross over it, with river on your right. Continue to the footbridge on your right , pause, and turn round, retracing your steps back to your car.


Location: Washburn Valley

Start/finish: Road bridge at Lindley Wood reservoir

Distance: About six or seven miles

Difficulty level: Easy, apart from some serious muddy patches.

Terrain: All off road, tracks and fields

Livestock: Lots of cattle about, with young calves, so be extra vigilant, and also sheep.

Gates/stiles: Easy

Parking: Layby close to reservoir bridge, off B6451 - road from Farnley to A59.