WITHIN the eight mile circuit is a walk of great variety and interest.

Exploring Bolton Abbey half way through the walk is without doubt the highlight, and the remainder has a variety of hills, riverside walking, woodland and even a golf course.

Addingham is a former textile mill village (I would suggest more of a small town) which has a busy history and offers a popular alternative to visit rather than nearby Ilkley.

Most walkers simply see it as the first tick point on the 95-mile Dales Way. Park near the school to the east of the village and head west over the old railway to a lane heading north west and climbing steadily onto the moors. After nearly a mile the lane peters out but the path carries on north west onto a golf course. Initially there is a small lake to the left and it is a good point to look behind you on to Ilkley Moor.

Keep heading north west after the golf course, still climbing but less steeply, past the buildings of Highfield House on the left and on to the farm of the same name.

Walk through the farmyard and continue north west on a signed but not very clear path. Where a path is not clear I look for stiles in the walls, a sure sign of the route of the path. On your left is Chelker Reservoir, famed for having the first decommissioned wind turbines in the country but not actually accessible on the existing path network. Head along a wall 200 metres to the north of the reservoir until arriving at a meeting of paths at Berwick East.

Initially take the path heading north east from the farm and where it divides take the right fork. I did at this point make the slight detour to the trig point of Haw Pike, a fine viewpoint over Beamsley Beacon, the southern Dales and the Bolton Abbey estate to the north before joining a lane heading steeply down from Hawpike Farm to the A59.

Cross the road with care and arrive at the Devonshire Arms, an imposing building and fine hotel. Head north along the road to the remains of Bolton Abbey (three quarters of a mile away), a 12th century Augustine Abbey set beautifully on the banks of the River Wharfe.

Return to the A59 along the River Wharfe. From the abbey to Addingham the route follows the Dales Way, well signed and straightforward. The first section is on open countryside with great views but after crossing under the A59 the land closes in and some of the walking is in trees. The path sticks mainly to the river bank. Follow it for one-and-a-half miles from the A59 until a caravan park marks the outskirts of Addingham. From here head back west to the car.

Fact File:

Distance: Roughly eight miles

Height to Climb: 280m (920 feet)

Start: SE 078500. Park roadside near the school.

Difficulty: Medium. The walk starts steeply and the paths near Chelker Reservoir may be difficult to follow. The walking is best around Bolton Abbey.

Refreshments: There is a café and selection of pubs in Addingham. There is also a café at Bolton Abbey to break up the walk.

Be Prepared:

The route description and sketch map only provide a guide to the walk. You must take out and be able to read a map (O/S Explorer 297) and in cloudy/misty conditions a compass (essential on this walk). You must also wear the correct clothing and footwear for the outdoors.

Whilst every effort is made to provide accurate information, walkers head out at their own risk.

Please observe the Countryside Code and park sensibly.

* The original version of this walk description contained a mistake, which we have now corrected.