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|Arrive Edale. Stay Overnight in Edale Area -
|Edale to Torside - 16 miles (25.5 kilometres)
|Torside to Standedge Cutting - 13 miles (21 kilometres)
|Standedge Cutting to Hebden Bridge - 15 1/4 miles (24.5 kilometres)
|Hebden Bridge to Ponden - 11 miles (18 kilometres) Plus extra mile back to the trail
|Ponden to Gargrave - 17 miles (27 kilometres)
|Gargrave to Malham - 6.5 miles (10.5 kilometres)
|Malham to Horton in Ribblesdale - 14.5 miles (23.5 kilometres)
|Departure Day -
NEW FOR 2024! - Pennine Way South Section -Self Guided - 9 Days
The 93 and 1/4 mile (150 km) Southern Pennine Way starts in Edale, in the Peak District and finishes in Horton in Ribblesadale, in North Yorkshire.
The terrain is hilly and often remote, with long stretches over open moorland. Underfoot can be paved or narrow, wet and at times boggy. You will certinly need to be prepared for wet feet!
This section climaxes with the breath-taking Pen-y-Ghent, standing at 694 metres high (2277 feet), it is the lowest of the Yorshire Dales Three Peaks, but by far the most iconic to look at.
A fantastic self-guided holiday covering the South section of the Pennine Way.
What better way to complete this part of the Pennine Way than by walking the trail at your own pace with this self-guided trip.
Day 1 - Arrive Edale. Overnight Stay in Edale.
Day 2 – Edale to Torside – 16 miles (25.5 km)
Day 3 – Torside to Standedge Cutting – 13 miles (21 km)
Day 4 – Standedge Cutting to Hebden Bridge – 15.25 miles (24.5 km)
Day 5 – Hebden Bridge to Stanbury – 11 miles (18 km)
Day 6 – Stanbury to Gargrave – 17 miles (27 km)
Day 7 – Gargrave to Malham – 6.5 miles (10.5 km)
Day 8 – Malham to Horton in Ribblesdale, including Pen-y-Ghent - 14.5 miles (23.5 km)
Day 9 - Departure Day
This is a dog friendly holiday - Please request more details before booking if you would like to bring your dog as suitable accommodation is extremely limited and can not be guaranteed!
Your arrival day into the region, ready for your holiday!
Edale is the start of the Pennine Way South and so your arrival point.
With its excellent train service connections we highly recommend arriving by train. Your accommodation is a short stroll away or we can arrange for you to be collected.
Enjoy a relaxing evening in the Edale area!
You begin your holiday from Edale, considered the gateway to the Pennine Way. From here you will climb Jacobs ladder and onto Kinder Scout, the highest point in the Peak district. It is often referred to as the Peak of Peaks in the Peak district!
Kinder Scout was the site of the infamous 1932 Kinder Mass Trepass that paved the way to the National Parks authority, the Peak District being the first to be recognised in 1951.
You continue on to cross Snake Pass, the moderately challenging Bleaklow moor and then reach Torside, where you will have a transfer to your overnight accommodation.
Relax and reflect, on a long day of climbing but hopefully some breath taking views along the way.
After a short transfer back to Torside you will begin your days walk along the trail. This is very much a day of two halves.
After walking around the edge of Torside reservoir you begin to climb steeply. Follow the paved path heading towards the traingulation point or 'Soldiers lump' at Black Hill.
Black Hill is named after the soot from the chimneys of the local milltowns.
You then cross a series of narrow ravines or 'cloughs'. Dean Clough, the first clough you will cross, can be impassable after heavy rain but there are waterfalls on the stream to the east.
Cross the A635 with care and carry straight on, to a section of the walk through a series of reservoirs.
Wessenden Head Reservoir is the highest in a series of four reservoirs in the Wessenden Valley above the village of Marsden. After Wessenden reservoir you climb sharply again before the ground flattens out as you continue on to Standedge Cutting.
You will have a transfer to your evenings accommodation.
Today is a gentler day, with less hills to climb but no less views to take in. There are many main roads to cross, so please take care.
After your transfer this morning, you will begin your days walk along the trail towards Standedge and then Moss Moor trig points. You carry on towards Windy Hill and the 300 foot tall Windy Hill transmitter
This was formally to be used as a backbone link for communication across the UK in case of global war and considered an important part of the country's defence system. It operated along with other masts built to link communicatiobs together, from about 1963 until 1989. Now, the mast is thought to be used for mobile phone signals.
Next you will cross the M62 motorway over a bridge, across the longest cutting on the M62. Take some time as you enter the bridge to look down and to your left. In the distance, at the side of thecarriageway, you may see the Red Lancashire County boundary stone, placed by Queen Elizabeth in 1971. On the opposite carriageway in another boundary stone, but this time with a white border marker, as you enter Yorkshire.
Continue over the bridge and onto Blackstone Edge, with its rugged and rocky topped trig point. From here, you will have great views of Rochdale and Stoodley Pike in the distance.
Stoodley Pike was completed in 1815 for Napoleon. It was rebuilt in 1856 and if you feel up to it, take some time to climb up the spiral stairs to the top, and take in the wide views of the South Pennines.
Carry on until you come to a wooded section were you will begin to descend into Hebden Bridge. You will spend your evening in this area.
As you have spent the night in Hebden Bridge you will follow an alternative loop path back to the Pennine Way path itself.
You will begin the ascent to the official path by following an old packhorse track to the village of Heptonsall. With its pretty cobbled high street, you can image weavers hard at work, as you peer through the windows.
You continue on along open tracks, until you reach Graining Water, where the runoff from Widdop reservoir merges. It feeds into the Yorkshire river Calder at Hebden Bridge below. You pass the reservoir itself, split into 3 sections, and then onto the most iconic building of this section of the trail - Top Withins. This is said to be the building which inspired Emily Bronte to write Wuthering Heights.
From here you continue on to Lower Heights, where the moorlands are replaced by a track and you reach Ponden Reservoir.
You will stay in the vicinity of Ponden this evening.
Ponden is the home of the grade II listed Ponden Hall, thought to have been the inspiration to Emily Bronte for the Linton family home in her book Wuthering Heights. Until recently Ponden Hall was run as a bed and breakfast but is now closed.
You will walk passed Ponden Hall and the reservoir as you continue on the Pennine Way today. Walk through fields and tracks, navigating cloughs or ravines as you go. Eventually, you will arrive at Cowling. Take care crossing the main A6068 and continue on along tarmac road until you re join fields again. The path eventually brings you to the village of Lothersdale, where welcome refreshments can be sort before continuing on.
You will eventually reach Pinhaw Beacon and trig point. From here you will be able to take in the views of nearby Pendle Hill, The Yorkshire Dales and Ilkley Moor. You will also find a marker stone for where Robert Wilson’s, the Beacon keeper, was found. His body was found there in 1805, after failing to reach the beacon is terrible weather conditions.
Continue on along track, which can be wet in section, but slabs and duckboards have been put down in places. Eventually you will reach the village of Thornton in Craven, continue on and reach the towpath of the Leeds Liverpool Canal. You turn away from the towpath and carry on until you reach Gargrave.
You will spend your evening in the vicinity of Gargrave.
Today, you have a shorter day's walking so you can have a more relaxed start to your day.
As you leave Gargrave, follow the road out of the village heading towards Malham. After crossing fields, you will follow the River Aire. You eventually break away from the river but continue to follow the Malham Beck, which will led you all the way to Malham.
Malham is a beautiful small village, that is a busy tourist destination spot. With nearby Gordale Scar, Janet's Foss and the infamous Malham Cove, which you will climb tomorrow, it makes for a walkers paradise!
You will stay in the vicinity of Malham this evening.
Today, is your final walking day on this south section of the Pennine Way.
You depart Malham and head for the magnificent Malham Cove, climbing the 400 stone steps to the top of the limestone pavement. The limestone pavement has featured in many Hollywood movies including Harry Potter & the Deathly Hallows Pt 1 and Wuthering Heights (1992).
Continue on towards Malham Tarn, where an ice cream awaits (if you are lucky!). Walk around the tarn, heading onto Malham Moor , onto Tennants Gill and continue to climb up to Fountains Fell. From hear can see the Three Peaks of the Yorkshire Dales, including Pen-y-Ghent.
Your approach to Pen-y-Ghent, the lowest of the three peaks, is along a limestone paved path, leading to a shelf system as you begin your ascent. The way up the mountain is via a steep rock face, so your hands will be needed. The trig point from the top is reached at a height if 694 metres (2277 feet).
Keep to the path as you descend from the mountain and follow the track until you reach Horton in Ribblesdale, your destination for this evening.
You will make your way home today via the Settle Carlisle train line from Horton in Ribblesdale train station.
(A) Bed and Breakfast accommodation (twin or double share basis).
(B) Cicerone guidebook with map and instructions specific to your trip, including emergency telephone numbers.
(C) Luggage transfers between accommodation.
(D) Transfer to accommodation on Day 2 & 3 (return).
(E) Emergency back-up service from Shepherds Walks Holidays mobile telephone number.
(A) Any additional transfers not mentioned in the dossiers
(B) Cost of parking your car for the duration of your trip
(C) Personal clothing and equipment.
(E) Lunch and Evening meals.
(F) Single room option (if required, see single supplement).
(G) Pick up and drop off at airports.
(H) Other entrance fees into attractions and public transport costs not mentioned above.
The Shepherds Walks Representative will:
A) Be available should you have any problems during your trip
B) Arrange the transportation of your luggage.
C) Provide transfers as necessary to your car / station if specified in your booking or itinerary.
We are here to offer you the best holiday you could ever imagine and we aim to do this through the personal service that we offer.
Make your holiday run smoothly – We are here for you. Our sole objective is for us to help you. We are here at any stage of your holiday and even in the planning stages. We tailor things to your requirements, not those of the masses.
We don’t cut corners - We want to see you again and want you to speak highly of Shepherds Walks Holidays. This is why we are literally willing to go that extra mile. The information you receive at every stage will be clear and leave you asking no questions.
We have personally walked all the trips we offer - We know exactly what you are going to embark on and can advise you on any aspects of your holiday over and well above what many of our competitors can.
Press choose to walk with us – Shepherds Walks Holidays are asked to deliver a very high percentage of the trips for journalists in the region. When the Tourist Boards are approached by a journalist wanting to visit the area who do they ask to provide their holiday or take them out walking? Shepherds Walks.
We have had press trips on all our routes and the articles speak for themselves.
Protected Holiday - All our holidays are protected through the operation of a Trust Account.
We are close at hand if you need us – We are a local business and if you need us at any time during your holiday just ask. If you are on a self guided trip we often will catch up with you, even over a drink one evening, just to make sure everything is going well. It’s better to iron out any little problems during your holiday, rather than hearing about them when you are back at home.
We enjoy great relationships with your accommodation providers and they will help us to help you
As we are literally on the doorstep we know the best places to stay. Often we will have block booked the best accommodation the previous year. We want our customers to stay in the best possible accommodation. As we know the proprietors personally and we liaise with them regularly they will go that extra mile to help us to help you whilst out on your route.
That is why Shepherds Walks has won awards and has helped people relax and totally enjoy their visit to this wonderful part of the country. We are willing to go that extra mile!
You will receive all your final walk info by email approximately four weeks prior to departure, giving you plenty of time to go through all of the information before your departure.
A hard copy of your holiday pack, including your map and luggage labels, will be posted to you a week or so later, so no need to print anything out.
We don't release any information earlier than this just in case there are last minute changes to accommodation reservations or transfer arrangements.
Once we receive your full payment and 4 weeks prior to your holiday departure date, we will e-mail you all of your holiday details in your holiday pack. This has details of where you will be staying and your transfer details.
Anything you are not sure about, we are only a phone call or email away!
Yes, we move your bags for you everyday. You just leave your main bag at your accommodation and we will move it for you, so it will be at your next nights accommodation waiting for you.
You just carry your day pack.
Your baggage allowance for the trip is one main piece of luggage which should be preferably either a backpack/rucksack or sports bag, and one small daypack. Try to travel as light as possible. It is best to avoid large solid hardtop suitcases as these cause difficulties on transfer vehicles etc.
The larger piece of luggage will travel on the vehicle between accommodations and the daypack should be suitable for carrying any additional outer-layer clothing and items you will need on your walk during the day. As a general rule, we would recommend that your main piece of luggage shouldn't weigh more than 18 kilos.
Sadly now all costs are based on 2 people sharing and so the solo walker has to burden this cost for both transfers and room rates. As this cost can be quite expensive, it may be worth looking to see if we offer a guided holiday, you could then opt for a single room, just paying the single supplement, making it a much cheaper option.
So, the rule is:
If you are travelling with other people and require your own bedroom, then select the single room supplement.
If you are booking your holiday on your own, then select the solo supplement.
Double – One double bed for two people.
Twin – Two single beds each for one person.
Single – A room with a single bed for sole occupancy. We do our best to reserve a double bedded room for sole occupancy where possible but if this is not available, then your room may have a single bed in it.
Our holiday season runs from 1st April until the last day of September. You can book your holiday to start anytime during those dates.
Holidays outside of those times are not possible as most accommodation providers will close during the winter months and the luggage transfer companies do not operate out of season.
Certain holidays, we may be able to accommodate out of season. Please contact us if you require an out of season holiday and we can help you with your request - 01669 621 044.
The accommodation on the tours are in Inns, family-run hotels, and Bed and Breakfasts. We endeavour to provide en-suite accommodation.
If you are coming to the UK from overseas it is a condition of our tours that you are covered by medical and personal travel insurance that includes repatriation to your home country.
If you are a UK resident medical and personal travel insurance is also highly recommended, especially with cover to include Covid 19.
If you have not organised appropriate insurance yet, please do so before you travel.
If you have to cancel your holiday due to ill health we can issue you with a receipt for any monies paid so you can make a claim.
For our recent holiday on the northerly Pennine Way stages, Shepherds Walks organised Elizabeth and me a great trip.
The weather was even kind to us so perhaps they arranged that too!
Armed with the supplied routes on our Garmin GPS, self-guided we enjoyed the upland walking in some of the most remote areas of England if not the whole UK.
The daily distances and ascent were not too bad but combined with the terrain underfoot, in England's sometimes boggy high fells, this combination explains why the Pennine Way has a reputation for being tough.
The small number of Shepherds Walks' arranged transfers worked like clock-work, including our luggage every day, and each night we had an overnight stay arranged for us in truly unusual and high quality accommodation.
These overnight venues can only be so reliably picked, day after day, by someone with real local knowledge.
An evening meal, along of course with breakfast, was provided at each venue, and all but next door at Kirk Yetholm, and to a meal these were all excellent and used local ingredients sourced by our friendly local hosts.
The dinners, extra cost items over the included b&b, were very reasonable value for the terrific quality offered.
One overnight stay was in a luxury wooden cabin near Hadrian's Wall, with extensive views of the surrounding hills, and to which our meals were brought and served - better service and food quality than in most hotels.
So with 15m average daily mileages and what in bad weather could be quite difficult terrain, this was a very memorable trip: UK-unbeatable scenery, great places to stay and high quality food and drink, all under-pinned with faultless organisation and logistics. And from a family run outfit too.
Why go anywhere else for a northern England walking holiday?