After a difficult previous leg, the trail settles down to a long and gentle descent northwards across the moors. After four miles it joins Battersby Bank Road, which is followed across Warren Moor. Eventually the valley floor is reached, and the trail continues on along roads to reach the hamlet of Kildale, which features the first railway station of the trail so far.
2 hours 44 minutes
Map of the leg
Maps courtesy of Google Maps. Route for indicative purposes only, and may have been plotted after the walk. Please let me have comments on what you think of this new format.
This leg starts off at Bloworth Crossing at NZ615014, high on the North Yorkshire Moors.
Here turn left to take a track that heads north-northwestwards. This climbs slightly to reach a little summit before falling and climbing once more to pass the summit of Tidy Brown Hill. Shortly after this at NZ601049 turn right to go past a field gate and join a smaller track. Follow this track as it heads northwards. The track slowly falls and curving slightly to the right to take a more north-northeasterly course. 1.4 miles after the track junction the track climbs slightly to reach a pedestrian gate before a field gate, and then a few yards later a field gate guards a road at NZ610069.
Head straight on along this road; initially it climbs northeastwards before curving to the left and falling steeply. 1.4 miles after joining the road the gradient slackens; go through a clapper gate beside a cattle grid and continue along the road northwards. After a sixth of a mile it curves to the left to head north-northwestwards for another quarter of a mile until it ends at a T-junction with another road. Turn right along this road and follow it east-northeastwards as it enters the hamlet of Kildale. This leg ends at a road junction on the left at NZ607093.
Places of interest
Bloworth Crossing and the Ironstone Railways
The high North Yorkshire Moors can seem like an utterly natural environment, untouched by human hand since time immemorial. It is therefore somewhat of a surprise to discover that a railway once ran over the high tops.
The Rosedale Railway ran for eleven miles from ironstone mines in Rosedale to the Stockton to Whitby line at Battersby Junction. A 1-in-5 incline was needed at Ingleby to pull the wagons up hundreds of metres onto the moors, the weight of loaded wagons pulling empty ones up. The railway opened in two phases: a narrow-gauge line to above Ingleby opened in 1858, which the NER rebuilt to standard gauge and extended to Rosedale three years later. The mines closed in 1925, and the line four years later.
It is odd to think of steam trains chugging across the top of the Moors, and the heart attacks that locals, the park authority, and visitors might have at any attempt to reintroduce such a line nowadays. Yet the old line has becomes a useful footpath across the moors, and has mostly merged into nature. Manâ€™s effect on nature is not necessarily long-lived.
The Cleveland Way crosses the course of the old railway at Bloworth Crossing.
location UID #338
Kildale, its station and the railway line
Kildale is a small hamlet nestling on the northern flanks of the North York Moors. It has a church, a tearooms, and a railway station on the Esk Valley line.
The Esk Valley railway runs from Middlesbrough to Whitby; it is all that remains of a network of railway lines across North Yorkshire, including the preserved North Yorkshire Moors Railway. The stretch of line between Battersby (a little way west of Kildale) and Grosmont was built by the North Yorkshire and Cleveland Railway, a short-lived affair that opened in 1858, but which was soon taken over by the North Eastern Railway. It seems slightly odd that this lengthy, remote line, whose only large settlement is Whitby, survived the Beeching Cuts. But locals must be glad that it was.
location UID #339
There is no public transport access at Bloworth Crossing.
The opposite is the case at Kildale, which has a station on the Esk Valley Line which runs between Middlesborough and Whitby. See the National Rail website for more information.
Kildale is also served by a couple of buses to Stokesley every day.