I went camping!!! only for 2 nights and it rained practically the whole time, but…I went camping.
I should have planned it better as I drove straight passed Middleham where I had previously visited, but heyho it was a lovely drive. As I couldn’t check into the campsite until the afternoon I decided to stop a few places along the way. The first being Aysgarth Falls, this camping trip turned into a waterfall homage as you will see. There was a great car park there, with a toilet/cafe block. Thankfully the toilets were open, but the cafe was not. It was a short, easy walk from there to the upper falls. I didn’t visit the lower ones as I wanted to leave something to return to in the future.
This was the location for the fight scene in Robin Hood Prince of Thieves, with Kevin Costner. This was mentioned in the craft shop, along with the fact that Mr Costner did not like the cold water. He wore a wetsuit under his costume, which you can see peeking out. He also had lots of warm water pumped into the river…not sure if that is true, I can’t imagine it being good for the ecosystem. Either way, here is a clip of the scene I found on YouTube.
After that, I headed to the campsite and noticed Ribblehead Viaduct on my right. You can’t miss it really. It was my plan to go there the next day and maybe walk in the area, but it was right there. So I stopped for an ice-cream from one of the two vans and went for a short wander right then and there.
This is not the viaduct featured in Harry Potter, that is the Glenfinnan one in Scotland. A steam train does go over this one every now and then as you can see in this video.
Well, as my plan for the next day was scuppered I had to research what to do the next day. After I got my tent up I used the weak wifi signal to have a ponder. Actually, it took ages to put up the tent as one of the poles was a bit faulty. Plus, why does it always have to rain when I go camping. I have only been 3 times now and it has rained every time. Next time I am going to pick a sunny day and chose somewhere you don’t have to pre-book. Though it was nice to know you had a guaranteed place on a nice site.
Back to the research, I decided on the Ingleton Waterfall Trail. The trip advisor reviews were a bit hit and miss. Most people complaining about the price or suggesting to do it in reverse to avoid the cost. As a single person, I didn’t mind the cost of £7 per person. As I would be there for some time, and it included the car park fees, they can be the same amount at times. I would rather pay for car parking than try and find a free space on the street, there aren’t many and that causes havoc for the locals. Plus doing the route in reverse during covid times or at any time really, just causes hassle for everyone as you are going against the flow on narrow, sometimes steep, paths. BUT, if I was in a group of 4 or 5 that is a lot to pay for car parking and a walk when there are many other, free places in the dales. I would think charging £5 for parking and having an entry fee of £2 or £3 would stop many people avoiding the cost and causing issues along the route. Then again some people will always try to avoid fees.
The day I went was rainy, camping in the area meant I could get there early so it wasn’t very busy. This place can get incredibly busy so plan your trip carefully. Also, as I said the route is supposed to be a one-way system and once you are in, you really need to complete the whole thing. That means a 4.5mile walk along some narrow and steep paths, wear the right clothes and shoes. I also took a walking stick due to my dodgy knee, I was glad I did.
The walk was wonderful, even in the rain. I loved every minute of it. I didn’t find it difficult, but I go walking a lot. I would say you need to be reasonably fit and use to walking to attempt it. There are of things to see along the way, including a few money trees. The scenery was glorious and the waterfalls were in full flow due to the rain.
When you finish the circular walk you are at the other end of the village and you have to walk a little way back to the car park. At other times this would mean a bit of shopping or eating, but not right now. I headed back to my car and then my tent.
The next day I went home via the Singing Tree.