Walking Group Report – Nidderdale

“After negotiating the vagaries of the coin machine in Pateley’s Showground car park the seven members proceeded to leave Pateley, just after 10am, by climbing steeply westwards past the old brewery via alleys, woodland and pastures. Meeting the Nidderdale Way at the top of the climb we continued westward on tarmac passing banks of roadside wildflowers with extensive views to Bewerley Moor upwards to the left and the Foster Beck valley to the right.
The weather was cloudy and cool but thankfully dry and it was pleasant walking with lambs in the fields and a slight breeze in our faces. After crossing Brandstone Beck at Dub Bridge the party climbed gradually for one half of a kilometre before arriving at the information board looking down onto Prosperous and Providence disused lead mines.  We continued down left to inspect the capped main shaft of the Prosperous mine before descending clockwise to the ruined smelt mill and other workings.  A pleasant picnic lunch was taken here amongst the ruined buildings and works on the banks of Ashfold Side Beck.
Mountain Pansy
Mountain Pansy (Viola lutea)
After lunch we crossed the beck and climbed steeply up the other bank as we turned east back towards the Nidd.  We followed the course of this delightful stream with extensive deciduous woodland to the right on the other side of the beck with views opening up of the Nidd valley ahead. The descent continued through an extensive caravan park before meeting Low Wath Road near to the old wooden water wheel at Corn Close.  Crossing the road we continued southward following firstly Foster Beck and latterly the River Nidd through pasture, another caravan park and finally Pateley’s municipal park and town centre.
So concluded the first UWFS walk following the Covid 19 lockdown.  A pleasant round of about 7 miles. Special mention to Christine and Colin for botanical identifications and to Peter Ward on his maiden outing with the UWFS group. Walk Group Leader: David Wolstenhulme
Spring Sandwort or Leadwort
Spring Sandwort or Leadwort (Minuartia verna)