Westgate - Rookhope - Westgate

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From Westgate the walk climbs gradually up through Slit Wood in the steep-sided Middlehope Valley, alongside the burn of the same name. This is a glorious, densely wooded riverside walk on wide, stony and grassy tracks alongside a river that boasts a multitude of small and medium-sized picturesque waterfalls. The valley is also noted for its industrial past, when at least two prominent lead-mines operated here during the 18th and 19th Centuries, extensive evidence of which still remain today.

At the top of the valley the terrain opens out onto lush meadows leading onto wild moorland. A stiff ascent across rough, marshy terrain leads you up the western slopes of Northgate Fell to the highest point of the walk near to Windy Hill. A stretch of downhill road-walking then follows on roads with little traffic before the route gradually descends on moorland tracks the northern slopes of the fell, to intersect the valley of the Rookhope Burn in the area called Lintzgarth. Easy, flat, field-walking alongside the burn delivers you to the former lead-mining village of Rookhope.

The return leg follows a disused mineral railway line along the route of the Weardale Way. The railway path rises gradually and descends just as sedately around the eastern and southern flanks of Northgate Fell, to intersect a minor road for a short, steep descent back to Westgate.

England - North England - Durham - Weardale

Features

Birds, Butterflies, Flowers, Great Views, Hills or Fells, Industrial Archaeology, Moor, Pub, Public Transport, River, Toilets, Waterfall, Wildlife, Woodland
09/01/2012 - mark pallister

Great walk, very varied landscape. A touch boggy in places, decent boots are needed The post code in the directions is actually 11 miles from the start point.

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