Cow Close Crag is one of three rarely visited gritstone crags on the moors above the eastern shore of Gouthwaite Reservoir in Nidderdale.
The three crags are, from north to south, Sigsworth Crags, Cow Close Crag and Yeadon Crag. Barely known to walkers they are not even that well known to climbers. They even fail to merit a mention in the Yorkshire Mountaineering Club’s otherwise definitive guidebook Yorkshire Gritstone Vol.1. Cow Close Crag is so little known it hasn’t even made it on to the Unknown Stones website.
The fact that all three are difficult to access and lie a fair distance from a public right of way probably has much to do with this state of affairs. Of the three Cow Close Crag is probably the hardest to access as it is the central of the three and thus the furthest from access points to the north and south.
I visited Cow Close Crag, along with Sigsworth Crags and Yeadon Crag as part of a fairly rough 11 mile walk from Wath. Having dropped and broken my camera on Sigsworth Crags my mood improved somewhat upon reaching Cow Close Crag, which includes at least one strikingly shaped rock. Fortunately I had my phone with me to take some pictures so at least I had something to show for the effort I’d exerted in visiting these crags.