Date - 18th May 2008 Distance - 10 miles
Map - OL2 Start point - Skipton (SD 919515)


Summits Achieved

Name Height (ft) Height (m) Grid Ref
Sharp Haw 1172 357 SD 9594 5527
Rough Haw 1112 339 SD 9633 5583


The Walk

Another walk in the company of Uncle Bob, our start point being the market town of Skipton. To get there Dad had to drive along the A65 road that we had been along frequently to reach the start point of other walks. In the past he had pointed out the hill Sharp Haw as we passed by, saying that this was one we would have to climb. So finally today was the day.

We had never been to Skipton before and Tetley remarked to us what a nice town it is.

It was Sunday morning and the bells at the beautiful Parish Church were ringing out loudly, and indeed when we come back they were still ringing out.

Uncle Bob and Dad were soon ready and we jumped up into his rucksack and settled ourselves in. Initially we did not actually start the walk proper as we went to explore a now disused spur of the Leeds to Liverpool canal that runs below the castle.

Barges used this spur for the transport of limestone. This was brought in from nearby quarries along a tramway that ran high above on a level with the castle, then using chutes it was loaded into the barges. Although the tramway now longer exists we were fascinated to see the remains of the chutes.

After this lesson in history we now set off through the streets of Skipton to a stone step stile that led out into open country. Here Uncle Bob poses by the stile.

Behind you can see that the land rises up to what is known as Park Hill, from the top of which we had a fine view back over Skipton.

After crossing the main road the route went over the golf course. We kept our ears open for shouts of "fore", as we did not want to be hit by flying golf balls. As we walked on over Tarn Moor ahead, we were able to see our objective Sharp Haw and to the right Rough Haw. We think that you will agree that Sharp Haw is quite aptly named with its pointed summit, something that is quite unusual in the Yorkshire Dales, as generally the tops are large flat areas.

They seem a long way off, but after walking along some quiet roads and crossing fields, we reached a gate and the wide track leading to Sharp Haw. However Uncle Bob and Dad are never conventional, so decided to approach via the ridge to the left, which looked inviting. However a rather large wall barred the way, but such obstacles have never been known to deter them and we were soon over. It proved to be an interesting and gentle climb on a good path culminating in a summit at 1070ft (326m). At the large cairn we jumped out to have our photograph taken.

The summit is not named on the map, so we wondered if we could be cheeky and call it Stag Hill! A short descent followed before the final climb to Sharp Haw, once yet another intervening wall had been surmounted. The summit is adorned with a trig point where it was too windy today for us to sit on top for our photograph.

It was now about half a mile or so to Rough Haw. The steepish descent led to a gate, followed by a similar ascent to the summit, adorned with a substantial cairn. This view is looking towards Sharp Haw, the hill on the right in the distance is called Pendle Hill.

We had our photograph taken of course but think we have featured enough already. Retracing our route to the gate we then crossed rough ground to the right of Sharp Haw. It was then a climb up and down beside High Wood, to reach a gate in the wall surrounding the wood. The rough track led on to reach a long tunnel formed by rhododendron bushes. We were all quite amazed by this.

It was fascinating walking through this too. The path then zigzagged down through the woods to reach a good track at a signpost.

Here we turned left in the direction of Stirton. We were now on a good forest track below Sharp Haw and the unnamed summit, that eventually brought us to Tarn House Farm. As we walked on there was a herd of heifers in an adjacent field. As Dad stood to take photographs one became quite inquisitive.

Now all that remained was to reach and cross carefully again the busy A65, then come into the quiet streets of Skipton and walk down to the main street. Skipton is a very popular place and we were not surprised to see that it was crowded now compared to this morning.

It really goes without saying that while we rested and had our picnic in the car, Uncle Bob and Dad went to a nearby café.


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