Penyghent via Dub Cote

Walk Summary

A slight variation on the traditional approach to Penyghent which also includes detours to some outstanding pot holes, shake holes and a limestone pinnacle.

Distance: 9.5 miles
Total ascent: 2000ft
Walk Rating: *****
Parking: Roadside parking in Horton-in-Ribblesdale
Route: Download Route [GPX]

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Walk Summary

This was the fourth in a series of walks I was leading a group of friends I work with as we practice for an attempt at the Yorkshire Three Peaks walk in July. With the A59 once again open at Blubberhouses it was now practical to take the group up each of the three individual peaks.

I wanted to take the group on separate walks up Pen-y-Ghent, Whernside and Ingleborough not only for the physical practice but also so that they could explore some of the more interesting features. This is particularly the case with a fell like Pen-y-Ghent where some very minor detours reveal features such as Hull Pot, Hunt Pot and the Pen-y-Ghent pinnacle which we simply wouldn’t have time to see on the Three Peaks walk itself.

"Despite being especially busy this climb is always a real pleasure and though it looks daunting to first timers I think everyone in the group thoroughly enjoyed the experience."

I also wanted to make the walk longer than the usual routes of ascent and descent so, after leaving Horton, we didn’t take the path leading up via Brackenbottom Scar and instead carried on the lane towards Dub Cote. Passing Dub Cote we took the sometimes faint path climbing gradually up Dub Cote Scar Pasture.

With increasingly fine views of Ribblesdale behind us we eventually reached Long Lane. Turning left we were now walking directly towards Pen-y-ghent, a fine sight indeed. Upon reaching the junction with the Pennine Way I took the group just off the path to view Churn Milk Hole. To demonstrate the scale of this massive shake hole I scrambled down to the bottom.

Returning to the Pennine Way it was finally time to tackle the final approach and climb up the ‘nose’ of Pen-y-Ghent. Despite being especially busy this climb is always a real pleasure and though it looks daunting to first timers I think everyone in the group thoroughly enjoyed the experience.

Having reached the summit we sat in the shelter of the wall to eat our lunch and enjoy the sunshine and the views. Once refreshed we set off on the enjoyable descent north along the Pennine Way with superb views of the expanse of Horton Moor and Birkwith Moor. At the point where the Pennine Way takes a sharp turn west we made another detour, this time to view the wonderful Pen-y-Ghent pinnacle, another feature that is missed by so many.

Most of the rest of the walk consisted of visiting various pot holes. In order these were Hunt Pot, Hull Pot, Jackdaw Hole and Sell Gill Holes. While Hull Pot is the most impressive visually I think the group were unanimous in voting the sinister slit of Hunt Pot as their favourite. The fact that we were fortunate enough to witness a couple of cavers descending into the hole probably helped.

From Sell Gill Holes the final stage of the walk was south back into Horton on the Ribble Way. It was a lovely end to what had been a fabulous walk. I was particularly pleased that for once the weather had been kind and my friends had finally been rewarded with good views.