The starting point for this walk is Castle Hill, in the car park at the side of Victoria Tower. The beautiful rosy glow belies the freezing temperature at 6:30 am as the sun rises.
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This is a circular walk of 11 miles, and regardless of which way round you tackle it, you will start going downhill, and finish with a rise. (This is what happens when you start on the top of a hill). On the positive side, you can see the tower from most places on this walk, making it hard to get lost. Expect to take 4-5 hours on this walk.
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Today I had company for the walk, my daughters boyfriend is just finishing basic training with the army, and volunteered to come along. As we set off heading North-East from Victoria tower, Huddersfield is veiled in low cloud.
The mercury is hovering around zero degrees, but the clear sky is a good indication of a pleasant day to come.
The footpath leads downhill, veering slightly more towards east, until we meet the road at Wheat Royd. Your start point is still clearly visible.
Turn off the main road at Sharp Lane, and there is a footpath on the left, this takes you down a meandering path to Rushfield Dike
Up a rise to Birks Wood, where you join Woodsome road.
Starting to feel warm, we take a break for a brew by Woodsome Hall Golf Course, its still quiet on this road, but I suspect it will be noisier when we get to the A629, which is just around the corner. This corner of the road is treacherous, please be really cautious. The A629, although not really busy yet seems to be manic after the quiet of the walk so far, stay safe as you cross this main road. You are only alongside for 50 yards before turning Right (signposted “Lepton”)
If you have driven some of these roads, you will know how steep they are, so you can imagine that approaching on foot is disheartening, but actually they don’t seem too bad, and there are lots of spots where you can stop and chat with the locals.
A little way up the hill, turn Right along the footpath, which is well marked and a nice stretch along to the bridleway at Burton Royd lane, a good place to pause and take in the view.
If the weather is good, it is possible to see the start from here
It is actually about 5 miles as the crow flies.
The route circles around Kirkburton on a small road, joining a footpath again at Cinder Hill
This is as close as we get to Emley Moor mast, which is just 1km from us.
The footpath is reasonably well marked, but a little “tyred” in places
At Shelley, you are back on tarmac, drop down the steep hill into the lower village, then turn right along the A629. There is a turn to the left which takes you to Thunder Bridge, which is a very pretty little village, well worth a visit.
Take a breather before the steep uphill sectionup to Jenkinson wood and along wood lane. Right on Farnley lane and you are well on your way to Farnley Tyas.
Thunder Bridge was always a popular destination it seems
Emley mast is looking a little smaller now On the opposite side of the road, there is a strange looking little building, which is the well head that supplied Storthes Hall in Victorian times
Nearly back, Victoria Tower stands guard, waiting to welcome weary travelers back but before you get there, there is the pleasure of Lumb Dike. Please be careful, it can be very muddy here then start your assault on
the South Face of the Hill