For the printable PDF of this walk please click HERE
The route is highlighted on the map below. Measured using the tool at https://wtp2.appspot.com/wheresthepath.htm, this route is approximately 8.3 km (5.2 miles) with 105 m elevation (the cumulative height climbed). None of it is particularly steep.
1. Go down to the end of Beck Row. Follow the narrow path between the trees and the back of the sheds to a kissing gate, go through the gate and follow the worn path across the field to another small gate. Go through the gate and over the bridge. Go through another small gate at the top of the bank.
2. Turn right (east) and follow the hedge running parallel to the stream, going through a field gateway which can be muddy, and continuing straight on. At the end of the second field there is a recently installed kissing gate. Go through this gate.
3. Continue up the hill (north) along the field edge. At the top of the field, turn right along the track until the hedge ends by a big tree stump and a footpath marker sign.
4. Here, turn north again following the marker, and continue with another hedge immediately on your right (east) and the buildings at Thoralby visible some distance away to your left. Follow the field edge in a zig zag until you reach a T-junction of paths.
I enjoy the colour that fruits bring to the hedgerows in autumn, and the flocks of birds they attract.
5. At the T-junction, turn right through the hedge. Continue through five fields. Along here the path is clearly worn in the field margin, and at times the grass is even cut. There are some points where the ground can be waterlogged after heavy rain, and the gaps between the hedges are sometimes quite muddy.
Just before you turn north at point 6, it is easy to find fossils if the fields have been recently ploughed.
After wet weather, you may want boots in places.
6. At the sixth field, the hedge bends north (to your left). Follow the hedge north, through a small gate, and continue straight along the hedge for the length of a long field. [This is shown as two fields on the sketch map but by Oct 2022 it was managed as one so the text has been updated]. Along this stretch there are nice views up to the edge of the Wolds and across the Vale of York, weather-permitting.
Looking up to the edge of the Wolds.
Without too much effort, Bugthorpe seems far below.
7. When you get to the corner of the field, there's a metal farm gate on your left and a gap in the hedge ahead. Go through the gap and immediately turn right. Walk down hill along the edge of the field towards Lower Sleights Farm. After going through a small gate, the path then runs between the field fence and the garden hedge, and then follows the driveway north.
8. A footpath is signed to the right (east) when you get to a pen that looks like it is constructed from dual carriageway barriers. Follow that sign and go through the gate. There are fences running along the stream to your left and right, a fence running roughly straight ahead between two grass fields, and one running up to a wood on your left. Follow the fence running roughly straight ahead (bearing slightly right), keeping to the left (north) of it. This will take you down to a bridge crossing the stream at the bottom of the field.
9. Cross the bridge and head towards the gap in the hedges to your left. The ground here can be quite wet. The path continues up the edge of the field, roughly perpendicular to the stream. The path is not very clear at this point, but if you are going the right way you will reach a small gate and a stile into the next field.
10. Climb over the stile. The footpath runs around the upper edge of the field but the gate you are aiming for is across the diagonal of the field.
After climbing the stile (10), aim for the gate on the other side of the field
11. Go through the gate. The path turns to your left and around the edge of the field, but the next gate is directly opposite the gate you have just come through.
12. Go through this gate, by a large oak tree, and after just a few metres, there is a small gate through the hedge to your right (west). Go through here and follow the hedge down the hill to the farm track, going through another small gate on your way.
13. Follow the track over the cattle grid and join the road.
14. Turn right (west) and follow the road back to Bugthorpe. If you prefer to minimise walking on the road, you can pick up another footpath at the driveway of Primrose Farm.This will extend the route but replace some of the walk along this road with a shorter walk along Barf Lane.
Route 1 Map
For a printable pdf of a higher resolution map, click here.