Where to Walk
A Stroll Around Beck Hole
If you fancy finding out a bit more about Beck Hole this short, circular and mainly flat walk should fit the bill.
Allow 30 mins for a gentle stroll between pints
1 Starting at the Birch Hall Inn, look right and take the road bridge across the Ellerbeck. Walk through the cluster of cottages that make up the hamlet of Beck Hole. As the road turns to climb the steep hill you take the gate on the left and into a narrow lane immediately after the 'Lord Nelson' ( a former pub --- closed in 1940 )
Continue ahead and througha gap in the boundaty fence where the path joins the river bank
. Keep to the right of the river.
Keep to the right of the river.
A short way along here you may notice an old gatepost or two beside the path and stone walls half buried in brambles…During the years of the Industrial Revolution a row of 33 terraced cottages was built along here to house mine-workers and their families. The boom was soon over and as people moved on and they became empty they were eventually demolished and the stone taken away to build Malton Station.
Further up the wooded bank to your right you may be lucky to see or hear a steam train on the North Yorkshire Moors Railway as it runs between Grosmont and Pickering .
2 A short climb up and over stone steps brings you to a wooden footbridge on your left. Cross the river here.
This bridge has only recently been reinstated after being washed away in floods many years ago. On the bankside you will see two iron tipped timbers from the original construction of around 1836..look downstream and you wil see some of the others still embedded in the stream, showing the line of the oroginal railway bridge !.
There is a little- used path to the right as you pass these timbers which drops down to meander a little way along beside the water then stops…good place for dogs to have a splash…and a worthwhile diversion especially in spring when first the wild daffodils then bluebells are in flower.
Your return route follows ahead along the main path after the bridge. This is the track of George Stephenson's original railway through the valley.
3 Soon you will cross the river again over one of the original stone railway-bridges …a good place to pause and look down on the river and across to the wood…you might spot a heron or dipper in the water or if you're lucky deer grazing in the field.
Then continue straight ahead ( signposted Goathland Rail Trail ). The track widens out between hawthorn, blackthorn and dog-roses..interwoven with wild honeysuckle all summer or hung with lovely red haws and purply blue sloes in autumn...
Just after you cross a small bridge
over a ditch look into the fields on the right. It's hard to imagine
that in the 1860's there were two huge furnaces ..just
where the clump of silver birches now stand . They were built to smelt
the iron ore mined from the hillside beyond before
it was loaded up and sent off on the railway.
4 At the end of this open grassy track is another wooden footbridge. Cross the river here, or use the stepping stones. Just here is the site of the Beck Hole Railway Station (..see some photos of it in the big bar when you get back )
5 After crossing the bridge follow the path ahead to the next signpost and take the left turning. As you reach the end of the lane you should be able to see the pub....………time for another pint
Lots more local walks to come..
all starting from The Birch Hall Inn, Beck Hole.
Beck Hole to
For longer hikes have a look at these sites…..
www.innway.co.uk Mark Reids new site featuring his excellent walks ..all with good pubs along the way…
www.nymcam.co.uk A great site with walks around
For more information about the area visit the North York Moors Website