After a good fuelling breakfast in camp, we set off, walking south through the broad green dale, criss-crossed with dry-stone walls. Ingleborough’s stepped shape - due to its alternating layers of limestone, sandstone and shale – rises before us. Whernside, our second peak, dominates the landscapes behind us. We pass through the village of Chapel-le-Dale and soon reach the base of Ingleborough (723m), where a stepped path zig-zags fairly steadily to the summit of our first peak. We soak up the views over the surrounding dramatic landscapes, an area of rocky outcrops and limestone scars, and the impressive sight of the famous 400m-long Ribblehead Viaduct, built in the 1870s.
We then descend along a ridge to the valley below, where we walk parallel to the Settle – Carlisle Railway, enjoying a flattish section! We pass through Ribblehead, at the head of Chapel-le-Dale, and can admire the Viaduct from close quarters.
From here we can also see the distinctive whale-back shape of Whernside (736m). We pass numerous limestone escarpments and outcrops; this amazing scenery provides wonderful motivation to keep our legs moving! We gradually begin our ascent, following a slabbed path all the way to the summit. The last section is particularly steep but our efforts are rewarded with the views – on a good day you can see across to Morecambe Bay on the west coast – and the knowledge that it’s not far back to camp! After a short break we come down steeply off the mountain and trek the relatively short and flat distance to camp, where we enjoy a great evening meal in camp with our fellow trekkers. Night camp.
Trek approx. 12 miles (6-8 hours)