Rowlands Gill - Derwent Walk - Pontop Pike - Rowlands Gill

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The walk starts from the car park in Stirling Road - you will see the footpath leading to the converted Derwent Valley rail line. Almost immediately you will find yourself crossing the first of several well-preserved viaducts. Warning signs are posted at intervals about the dangers to horse-riders and cyclists getting too close to the edges on the viaducts, also warning against anyone practising the art of mountain climbing. These structures are very impressive as they cross some deep ravines running down the steep hillside on the left. On this stretch keep an eye out for horse-riders, cyclists and dogs; you will meet them all on this first 3km of the walk. As you walk along this footpath you should spy our objective on the skyline up on the top of the hillside to the left; a cluster of masts topped by the giant TV transmitter mast which is known as the Pontop Mast.
   
We leave the Derwent Valley footpath to start our climb up to Pontop Pike. This stretch will take you past two very old houses; one is Hamsterly Hall and the other is Pontop Hall. The walk up the hillside is gradual to start with but it does become quite strenuous as you walk on. The total uphill section is about 4km in distance. At the trig point on the top, fine views can be observed in every direction. To the north, Newcastle, to the east, the coastline. To the south and west, County Durham and the Pennines are laid out before you.

The rest of the walk is a gradual descent returning to our starting point, with some spectacular views across the Derwent Valley and a chance to identify some of the landmarks in the Tyne Valley.

England - North England - Tyne and Wear - Coast

Features

Birds, Flowers, Great Views, Pub, River, Wildlife
30/03/2016 - Shaun Doyle

Did this walk today and a good day but a couple of pointers. (18) Black Bull now a Scout/Guides hut (23) Do go through gate (28) Marker post no longer there and path not clear and difficult to find route to road. Ended up climbing over barbed wire fence

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