Suma Walking Group – On Ilkley Moor………..
Start point: Where Moor Lane meets Moor Road at Burley Woodhead
Our latest walk was in a very well known area – Ilkley Moor.
The moorland between Ilkley and Keighley is called Rombalds Moor and Ilkley Moor is part of that.
Most folk have heard the Yorkshire song “On Ilkla Moor Baht ‘at” but there is far more to the area than just the song.
Ilkley itself grew as part of the 19th C spa town enthusiasm.
Rock was quarried from the moor changing its appearance in places and next to one of these quarries are the “Cow and Calf” rocks or “Hangingstone Rocks” as they are sometimes known. These are a rocky outcrop and large boulder on the ridge overlooking Ilkley Town.
(A great place for a picnic – see picture)
Rombald was allegedly a giant who broke the calf rock away from the outcrop when he stamped his foot running away from his wife !! Another rock formation called “The Skirtful of Stones” is reputed to be connected to the same event. All good stuff for the tourists….
Other interestingly named stones easily visible to those tramping the moor are the “Swastika Stone” and the “Badger Stone”, both named after the strange patterns on them and also “St Margaret’s Stone”.
We visited a Bronze Age stone circle on the moor known locally as “The Twelve Apostles”. This must be a contempory name as it is believed that there were originally 20 stones.
Ilkley Moor provides a good vantage point and throughout our walk we were treated to good views of the surrounding countryside.
I would grade the terrain as “easy walking” with short hilly sections so it is suitable for families and ramblers as well as the more serious walkers.
The paths are well marked, and circuit around as well as criss-cross the moor allowing easy access to all it has to offer including a picturesque tarn and “Rocky Valley” which is well known in rock climbing circles.
This was another excellent Suma walk destination (thanks Matthew) – and this time we were really pleased to be joined be three previous Suma members.
And no – we didn’t sing the ruddy song !!