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Swinton Estate Trails: Dales View Loop

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Swinton Estate Trails: Dales View Loop
Author: Swinton Estate, Published: 28 Aug 2018 Walk Rating:star0 Swinton Estate Trails: Dales View Loop Walking Guidestar0 Swinton Estate Trails: Dales View Loop Walking Guidestar0 Swinton Estate Trails: Dales View Loop Walking Guidestar0 Swinton Estate Trails: Dales View Loop Walking Guidestar0 Swinton Estate Trails: Dales View Loop Walking Guide
North Yorkshire, Nidderdale
Walk Type: Garden or park
Swinton Estate Trails: Dales View Loop
Length: 2 miles,  Difficulty: boot Swinton Estate Trails: Dales View Loop Walking Guide
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0001_sunny Swinton Estate Trails: Dales View Loop Walking GuideToday's weather
3 °C, Clear/sunny, Wind: 11 mph SE
Next few days: Hover over icon for more info.
0004_black_low_cloud Swinton Estate Trails: Dales View Loop Walking Guide 0002_sunny_intervals Swinton Estate Trails: Dales View Loop Walking Guide 0002_sunny_intervals Swinton Estate Trails: Dales View Loop Walking Guide 0004_black_low_cloud Swinton Estate Trails: Dales View Loop Walking Guide 0017_cloudy_with_light_rain Swinton Estate Trails: Dales View Loop Walking Guide

IMPORTANT NOTE: This parkland walk is open every day from 10am to dusk. Earlier access is available by arrangement.

A circular walk of about 2.9km (1.8 miles), within the gardens and parkland of Swinton Estate in North Yorkshire. The privately-owned estate stretches from the River Ure in Wensleydale up onto the moors. This loop gives you chance to see the walled garden, the deer park, the spring garden, the coffin pond (with its beautiful stone bridge and old boathouse), the lily pond and a picturesque viewpoint with fine views of the rolling Dales. This walk is part of the Swinton Estate Trails collection, published through a collaboration between iFootpath and Swinton Estate to encourage people to discover the 20,000 acre Estate with varying terrain such as woodland, reservoirs, moorland, gardens and parkland.

This route follows the permissive paths within Swinton Park, provided with permission of Swinton Estate. Access is free of charge during 2018 (a small entrance fee will apply from early 2019). The walk has only steady gradients, with nothing too steep or strenuous. It follows a mixture of paved paths, stone paths and unmade woodland paths which can be muddy and uneven in places. You will need to negotiate three simple metal gates and flights of steps, but there are no stiles on route. The walk crosses one sheep pasture but you will not be sharing any of the paths with the deer (the deer park is fenced away from your paths). Swinton Estate welcomes visiting walkers (and canine companions) but please remember the usual countryside code rules; take your litter home with you, keep dogs under close control and be careful to shut any gates behind you. Allow 1 hour.

In terms of facilities, the Terrace Restaurant and Bar within the Swinton Hotel complex is available for refreshments at the start or end of your parkland walk. The bar area is dog-friendly, there is a beautiful courtyard garden and walkers will receive a warm welcome.

If you are a visiting walker, please park in the Swinton Country Club and Spa car park. From Masham, head south on Park Street and then turn right into Swinton Terrace (which becomes Swinton Road). After about a mile, you will see a side road and the impressive stone gates for Swinton Park on your right. Do NOT enter these gates, instead turn right to follow the side road. Ignore two more gateways within the wall on your left (the first is Exit Only and the second is for Deliveries) and take the third gateway which leads you into the parking area for the Country Club and Spa. Approximate post code HG4 4JH.

Walk Sections

Start to Deer Park Junction
Start to Deer Park Junction

Start point: 54.2127 lat, -1.6754 long
End point: 54.2122 lat, -1.679 long

Standing with your back to the road, walk diagonally left to reach the left-hand end of the spa building. Bear right along the tarmac deliveries drive, to reach the green entrance door for The Terrace on your right. Go through this door (open from 10am, walkers and dogs are welcome) and go ahead up the steps and through the doors to enter the Terrace Bar. (In a moment, you will need an access code to unlock the first garden door, so please call at the bar and request the Walled Garden Access Code - walkers will be given the code free during 2018, but a small entrance fee per person will apply from early 2019).

Once you have the access code, exit the rear door of the bar to reach the beautiful courtyard garden. Cross this diagonally left, heading up several flights of steps to reach the garden door in the top left-hand corner. Enter the access code and go through the door to enter the walled garden. The natural walled garden at Swinton covers 4 acres with a wide variety of fruit, vegetables, flowers and herbs, which are used by the on-site restaurants and cookery school.

Go ahead on the gravel path, with the stone wall on your left. A little way along, the path turns right and leads you to a fingerpost. Turn left (signed to the Gardens and Play Area), leaving the main gravel path and going up a step to join the stone path between the vegetable beds. If you glance across to your left here, you will see a lower section of wall that gives a glimpse of the birds of prey aviaries (please do not try to approach the birds).

You will come to a T-junction in the stone path. Turn left, heading to the wall, fork left to pass through the wall gap and then turn immediately right to follow the stone path leading you through the flower section of the natural walled garden. As you reach the top wall ahead, head diagonally right to exit the garden via the door (signed to the Parkland, Lakes and Spring Garden). You will see a play area and picnic site ahead. This picnic site is set within an area of park known as the Spring Garden. This is home to cherry trees, bluebells, azaleas and rhododendrons that produce a riot of colourful flowers and blossom in the spring months.

Turn left and follow the path to reach a small path T-junction. Turn left here to reach the next junction, with a gate on your left, a bench on your right and the fenced deer park directly ahead. Turn right at this junction.

Deer Park Junction to Bird Hide
Deer Park Junction to Bird Hide

Start point: 54.2122 lat, -1.679 long
End point: 54.2134 lat, -1.6833 long

Keep ahead on the main stone path, passing the bench on your right and with the fenced deer park on your left. The deer park supports a herd of approximately 200 fallow deer, including 20 bucks. Some of these are very pale in colour – commonly mistaken for albino.

A little further along you will come to a fork in the stone path (with a fingerpost). Take the right-hand branch and keep ahead to pass the bird hide on your right. This gives an excellent view of the parkland bird feeders, with chance to see plenty of woodland birds.

Bird Hide to Stone Bridge
Bird Hide to Stone Bridge

Start point: 54.2134 lat, -1.6833 long
End point: 54.2144 lat, -1.6848 long

Continue ahead and down to your left you will see the pond known as Coffin Pond. The path leads you past an old tree stump, now carved into an armchair. Stay with the path winding alongside Coffin Pond and look out on your right for two impressive stone coffins which were extracted from a nearby quarry. It is thought that they date from the Saxon period, and that they were coffins for the nuns in the local nunnery.

Soon after passing the coffins, the path leads you past the stone remains of a boathouse on your right and then across the old stone bridge. The earliest record of a garden at Swinton Park is of one laid out in 1699 to a design by George London. The lakes were designed as part of a landscaping programme during the 1760s, when the Danby family were in residence at Swinton. This stone bridge was added in the early 1800s.

Stone Bridge to Dales Viewpoint
Stone Bridge to Dales Viewpoint

Start point: 54.2144 lat, -1.6848 long
End point: 54.2149 lat, -1.6906 long

Beyond the bridge, follow the main stone path as it swings left along the top of the pond and then swings right, leading you away from the pond and steadily uphill. You will emerge to the next path junction (marked with a fingerpost), with views of Lily Pond across to your right. Ignore the two most obvious paths (ahead and sharp right), instead take the subtle narrow path diagonally right (at about 2 o’clock). This path begins immediately after the fingerpost and leads you directly towards Lily Pond.

Follow this narrow path with the banks of Lily Pond immediately on your left. The path swings left and then continues for the length of the pond. At the end of the pond, you will emerge to a T-junction with a stone track (with a fingerpost on your right). Turn left for around 15 paces to reach another fingerpost and turn right to join the next stretch of stone path. Take care underfoot, as this path is uneven with tree roots and rocks. The path leads you to a bench and gate, marking the Dales Viewpoint. It is worth pausing here to enjoy the beautiful views over the Dales, with the villages of Fearby and Healy to your right.

Tap the Listen button below (App only) to hear more about the Dales View from Felicity Cunliffe-Lister, owner of Swinton Estate.

Dales Viewpoint to Hill Top Junction
Dales Viewpoint to Hill Top Junction

Start point: 54.2149 lat, -1.6906 long
End point: 54.2141 lat, -1.6878 long

Go through the gate (remembering to secure it behind you) to enter the grass pasture. With your back to the gate, walk diagonally right (about 1 o’clock) across the pasture to reach the gate in the far corner. Pass through this (securing it behind you) and keep ahead on the woodland path. You will emerge to a T-junction at a fingerpost, with Top Lake directly ahead.

Turn left for about 30 metres to reach the next fingerpost and turn left again to join the path signed to the Hotel. The stone path leads you through the woodland with more glimpses of the Dales views across to your left. Further along you will pass a fingerpost on your left (marking the point where a path merges in from the right). About 50 metres later you will come to a fork in the stone path, marked with a fingerpost, at the brow of a hill.

Hill Top Junction to End
Hill Top Junction to End

Start point: 54.2141 lat, -1.6878 long
End point: 54.2127 lat, -1.6755 long

Take the right-hand branch, signed to the Hotel. The stone path leads you steadily then more steeply downhill, with Coffin Pond on your left. From this vantage point, you will have an excellent view of the stone arched bridge on the far bank, which you crossed earlier. On your right you will have the fenced deer park once again. Beyond the pond you will come to a path junction.

Bear right to re-join the path which you followed for the initial stretch of the walk. From this point we will simply be retracing our steps back to The Terrace. To do this, keep straight ahead on the stone path with the deer park on your right and, as you approach a gate ahead, turn left (signed to the Spring Garden).

Keep right at the path fork (passing the play and picnic area on your left) and pass through the door to re-enter the walled garden. Take the path almost directly ahead. Just before you reach the aviary gates ahead, turn left through the wide wall gap, then turn left, immediately right and right again to reach a fingerpost. Turn right to reach the wall and then turn left to reach a door in the bottom corner of the garden. Go through this door to reach the Terrace courtyard garden. Head diagonally left through the courtyard via several flights of steps, to reach the bar. Head into the bar for some well-earned hospitality.

If you would like to buy a small memento from your adventures in Swinton Estate, why not head over to the Estate Shop (accessed via the Country Club and Spa).

Remember...the best way of following our walking guides is to use the iFootpath App (iOS and Android) where you will have all the information in the palm of your hand and see your exact location on the live map as you travel. You can also add comments, photos, ratings and track your own routes.

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network Swinton Estate Trails: Dales View Loop Walking Guide Original GPX source file

Text and images for this walk are Copyright © 2018 by iFootpath and the author swintonestate and may not be reproduced without permission.


The information in this guide has been provided in good faith and is intended only as a guide, not a statement of fact. You are advised to check the accuracy of the information provided and should not use this guide for navigational directions nor should you rely on the accuracy of the weather forecast. You are advised to take appropriate clothing, footwear, equipment and navigational materials with you according to the current and possible weather and nature of the terrain. Always follow the country code and follow any additional warnings or instructions that may be available. Some walks may be very strenuous and you are advised to seek medical advice if you have any doubts as to your capability to complete the walk.

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8 Gallery Images for: "Swinton Estate Trails: Dales View Loop"

11455_0swintonestate1536132869 Swinton Estate Trails: Dales View Loop Walking Guide Image by: Swinton Estate
Uploaded: 05 Sep 2018
Towards the Terrace Bar

11455_1swintonestate1536132869 Swinton Estate Trails: Dales View Loop Walking Guide Image by: Swinton Estate
Uploaded: 05 Sep 2018
The Walled Garden
11455_2swintonestate1536132869 Swinton Estate Trails: Dales View Loop Walking Guide Image by: Swinton Estate
Uploaded: 05 Sep 2018
The Walled Garden

11455_3swintonestate1536132869 Swinton Estate Trails: Dales View Loop Walking Guide Image by: Swinton Estate
Uploaded: 05 Sep 2018
The Walled Garden

11455_4swintonestate1536132869 Swinton Estate Trails: Dales View Loop Walking Guide Image by: Swinton Estate
Uploaded: 05 Sep 2018
The Saxon coffins that give the pond its name
11455_0swintonestate1536132914 Swinton Estate Trails: Dales View Loop Walking Guide Image by: Swinton Estate
Uploaded: 05 Sep 2018
A bench with a view
11455_0swintonestate1536133014 Swinton Estate Trails: Dales View Loop Walking Guide Image by: Swinton Estate
Uploaded: 05 Sep 2018
The children’s play area
11455_1swintonestate1536133014 Swinton Estate Trails: Dales View Loop Walking Guide Image by: Swinton Estate
Uploaded: 05 Sep 2018
The Terrace Bar

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