Though just short of 9 miles this walk is very taxing and feels much longer. The tracks on this route disappear in many places and the ground if often incredibly boggy, even during dry spells. However, the views offered along the way and the return to the remote Tan Hill pub make it all worthwhile.
Circular | 14km (8.76 miles) | Difficulty: Medium to Hard
|Please note that the route given is a rough guide and should not be relied upon solely when planning a walk. Remember to plan ahead, get a proper map and ensure you have the right equipment.|
A good sense of direction is certainly required for this route and a pair of boots that won’t let water in. There is plenty of parking outside Tan Hill and along the road near the start of the route.
1: The route starts at the Tan Hill pub. It follows the road, Long Causeway, Eastward over the cattle grid and uphill to a track on the right-hand side which is signposted. Walkers should follow this track till they reach a disused mining operation.
2: From here the route becomes difficult to fathom. The growth of heather most likely contributes to the apparent lack of tracks on this section. The general advice here is to head Eastward towards the hillier part of the moor where a track can be seen heading upwards. There are several small stream valleys before reaching the hill that need to be crossed. If walkers are feeling lost they should head North till they rediscover Long Causeway road, they can then follow the road Eastward to point 6.
3: The route follows the vague track up hill after passing a small pond. At the top of the hill however the track disappears. Walkers may come across vague tracks across this section of the route which they can follow but the general advice is to continue heading Eastward. Eventually walkers should be able to spot a valley with a well defined track at the bottom of it. The route follows this path so walkers should head straight for it. There are several streams on the moors here so walkers are advised to watch their footing. Again, if lost, walkers can head Northwards back to the road.
4: Once in the valley walkers should follow the track North-Eastwards towards the road. The track here is clearly defined and a welcome change to the difficult footing of the preceding moorlands.
5: Once on the road the route turns left and follows it back towards Tan Hill for a short while.
6: The route turns down Sleightholme Moor Road on the North side of the road which heads downhill towards Sleightholme Beck. Walkers who have had enough of walking across moorland may want to consider staying on Long Causeway and following it directly back to Tan Hill.
7: The route turns left at a signpost for the Pennine Way and follows another track which leads downhill and over a bridge.
8: Immediately after the bridge there is a track on the left which follows the edge of Frumming Beck. This path is the Pennine Way, however in some places it is lacking the maintenance that some walkers may expect from this prestigious route. Later in this section the path tends to disappear, however there are posts acting as markers which walkers can aim for when this happens. Despite earlier boggier parts of this section being bridged with brief wooden walkways, later areas of bogs will require navigating through. It is difficult to get lost on this section as the destination, the Tan Hill pub can be seen ahead on the hill. However, the treacherous footing can really slow the pace of walkers and can make this final section of the route feel like a real slog.
The ground along much of the route may be easier to walk over in the snow, though the tracks may become even harder to find. For another route starting from Tan Hill, walkers could follow this route from Keld in reverse.