New All-Abilities Walks in Dales

Seventeen new very easy walking routes have been created in the Yorkshire Dales National Park, designed to appeal to people with limited mobility, push chair-wheelers and dog walkers.

Electric scooter users in Swaledale, 155 kb
Electric scooter users in Swaledale

Easy underfoot and with no obstacles such as stiles to negotiate, the routes can be walked by people of all ages, those with limited mobility, parents with pushchairs or young children, and owners of less nimble-footed dogs.

From Malham Tarn to the Grinton smelt mill - a scheduled monument - the walks are dotted all over the 680 sq miles of the National Park, and range in length from a 500m linear route to an 11km circuit. 

Rachel Briggs, the Authority's Access Development Officer, explained:

'The routes are designed for people who, for whatever reason, want to go on a short walk and don't want to have to negotiate stiles and kissing gates.'

'They are not just for people with limited mobility – for example, we get a lot of emails from dog owners whose dogs cannot get over stiles or through some of the gates, as well as from parents with push chairs.'

'These routes provide walks on firm surfaces with easy gradients and very few – if any – obstacles. You might come across the odd gate but they will be at least a metre wide.'

'Hopefully these are just the start of a larger number of similar walks.'

Details and maps of each walk, including descriptions of the terrain, have been put together in special 'Miles without Stiles' packs along with information about toilets, information centres and car parks.

The packs, which have been produced by the Yorkshire Dales National Park Authority, are on sale for £2.50 each in National Park Centres at Reeth, Malham, Grassington, Hawes and Aysgarth Falls.


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