Nateby Common

Nateby Common

Nateby Common, also known as Tailbridge Hill, is a grassy fell situated just north of the summit of the B6270, the high road from Nateby in the Eden valley to Keld in upper Swaledale.

Height (m): 547
Height (ft): 1795
Prominence (m): 41
Classification: Dewey
Hill No: 3591
Grid Ref: NY803053
OS Map OL19
No. of Visits 2

Nateby Common protrudes to the north-west of the broad boggy saddle separating High Seat from Nine Standards Rigg. Whilst neighbouring Nine Standards Rigg is a notoriously boggy fell Nateby Common is quite different due to its underlying limestone. As a result Nateby Common is a largely grassy fell with none of the bogs, reeds and tussocks kist a short distance to the east.

Nateby Common from the other side of Dukerdale
Nateby Common from the other side of Dukerdale

Nateby Common is partly separated from Nine Standards Rigg by the deep cleft of Dukerdale. A bridleway heading for Nine Standards Rigg crosses Rigg Beck at the head of Dukerdale allowing for a fine view down into the little valley.

Dukerdale
Dukerdale

On the gentle south-east slopes of Nateby Common, before it merges into Lady Bog, there is also a nice area of heavily weathered limestone pavement on Lamps Moss. On my last visit I noticed a series of new fences and gates that had been erected across the limestone. What their purpose is I don’t know but they do somewhat spoil the natural beauty of the limestone.

Limestone pavement on Lamps Moss
Limestone pavement on Lamps Moss

Nateby Common is quite possibly the easiest 500m+ fell in the Yorkshire Dales to bag. Cars can be parked just off the roadside at Tailbridge Neck where the B6270 levels out after a steep climb up from Nateby. From the parking area the summit can be reached by an easy five minute walk on a broad grassy path. The 37m in height needed to gain the summit is at a very gentle gradient and from the path there are some tremendous views of the Eden valley.

The B6270 with the summit of Nateby Common on the right
The B6270 with the summit of Nateby Common on the right

The summit is an obvious grassy mound that is topped by a prominent cairn. My first visit to Nateby Common was in awful weather and for a long time the only picture I had of the fell was my friend stood near the cairn in the rain and hill fog.

My friend Matt on our first visit to Nateby Common
My friend Matt on our first visit to Nateby Common

A long-delayed return visit in July 2017 revealed a superb panorama from the summit with views including the Howgill Fells, a long Lakeland skyline and the high fells of the North Pennines.

The view towards Wild Boar Fell and the Howgills on a much clearer day
The view towards Wild Boar Fell and the Howgills on a much clearer day

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