Forge Valley

Forge Valley

Route: Forge Valley to Hackness

Area: North Yorkshire

Date of walk: 4th May 2019

Walkers: Andrew and Gilly

Distance: 5.6 miles

Weather: Mixed sun and showers, a hailstorm, strong winds

Our son James was staying with us at Derwent View in Hackness and gave us a lift to the village of West Ayton, as our route was a linear one. We started our walk from the road bridge over the River Derwent and walked out of the village along Castle Rise. The road is a dead end, and we left it via a gate to follow a grassy path past the ruins of Ayton Castle, built in 1410

After passing the castle we walked downhill to join another path on the bank of the River Derwent – the river would our constant companion until the end of the walk

Before long we entered into Forge Valley Woods, a National Nature Reserve. A wooden boardwalk follows the riverside, and along it are various viewing platforms and seats. It’s a delightful place, a haven for a variety of woodland birds. The path was lined with wild garlic, bluebells, anemone, marsh marigold and other wildflowers

At the end of the woods there’s a choice of paths along the valley, one higher and the other lower and closer to the Derwent. Whichever one is chosen there is some boggy ground to negotiate and walking boots are bound to become clogged with thick mud at most times of year. The higher path is the drier of the two and we opted for this today. There are lovely views across the valley from the elevated path, though at one point a violent hailstorm hit us, borne on very cold and strong winds

We eventually arrived at the quiet village of Wrench Green and after walking through it we crossed the wooden footbridge over the Derwent. From here we followed the lane back to Derwent View in Hackness. Anyone not staying at the cottage could park in the village hall car park

Click here or on the Map Page icon for the route map

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