Hole of Horcum - Levisham Moor - Levisham

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The Hole of Horcum is a huge natural amphitheatre lying in the heart of the North York Moors national park, to the north of Pickering. Legend has it that it was formed when a giant (called Horcum) scooped up a handful of earth to throw at his wife during an argument. He missed and the handful of earth now forms Blakey Topping (a distinctively shaped hill to the east). Here, you'll find ample free parking. Our walk starts by skirting around the top edge of the Hole, giving you a good feel of its sheer size. We then head away from the Hole over the nature reserve of Levisham Moor. Keep an eye out for curlew, lapwing, merlin and golden plover.

Our next stop-off is at the very pretty village of Levisham and potentially an early break at the Horseshoe Inn, before heading into the broad-leaved woodland above Levisham Beck. Soon we descend to the beck and follow it through pastureland right into the Hole of Horcum.

Dog-walkers please note the presence of sheep, cows and many dog-unfriendly stiles. Please also control your dog on Levisham Moor to protect ground-nesting birds.

For a longer version of this walk, see Walk 3765. For a shorter version, see Walk 3767.

England - North England - Yorkshire - North York Moors


Birds, Great Views, Moor, Pub, Wildlife, Woodland
2/18/2022 - Meera Lawrence

I did this walk today, the day between two storms! The southern loop, after Levisham was treacherous with very slippery mud. I walked the whole thing with my head down to avoid plunging down the slope to the right. The stream at way marker 8 was swelled and crossing it was impossible at the usual site so I walked upstream a bit and scrambled down the bank at the narrowest point. The whole Northern part at the start was lovely. For that reason, I wondered whether it would have been better to do the walk in reverse, so I wasn't tired at the dangerous point. All that being said, the route was very nice. The written instructions are accurate and unambiguous. On a hot sunny day, trainers might be fine, but I'd personally recommend good walking boots in all but the best conditions.

11/3/2010 - matthew lax

Did this walk today, my first walk. May I add that I enjoyed it very much. It took me a little longer than stated - about 3hrs 45 mins. The scenery was fantastic. A nice walk over the moors, then a bit more challenging through woodland. Then the steep hill at the end. Enjoyed very much. Matt

5/27/2009 - Bill Baldry

Great walk - the weather was brilliant as well (24/5/09). Many thanks for directing us to this very varied walk through moor and woodland with a challenge thrown in at the end (especially for us Flatlanders from Suffolk). Bill and Daphne Baldry

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