Walk from Grosmont to Beck Hole and Goathland

This walk of about 6 miles takes you on a circular route between two North Yorkshire Moors villages, Goathland and Grosmont. Along the way, you also visit the picturesque hamlet of Beck Hole. Grosmont and Goathland sit on the route of the North Yorkshire Moors Railway. So, you could combine a walk one way with a ride back behind a steam train. Trains run nearly all year round.

The circular walk described here takes two different routes between the villages. It passes through mixed woodland for the most part with some open countryside, farmland and a little bit of road walking. There are some gates and stiles to negotiate. The rail-trail which links Grosmont, Beck Hole and Goathland, follows the route of the Murk Esk river so running water is never very far away.

For the most part, the walk is easy going and a lot of it is on gravel or tarmac surfaces. Parts of the woodland paths may be a little muddy after rainfall. I have described the walk starting at Grosmont, however, it can equally well be started at Goathland, simply swap the two sections around.

The first half of the walk takes a northerly route through Doctor’s Wood and Craig Cliff Wood before joining the Road into Beck Hole. If you are walking in April or May these woods are full of Bluebells. The second half of the walk follows the “Rail Trail” back to Grosmont.

Rail Trail

The railway line between Whitby and Pickering was opened in 1835, first as a horse-drawn line and later by steam engines. In the 1860’s the section between Grosmont and Goathland was rerouted to follow what is now the line of the North Yorkshire Moors Railway. The line in use today is not far away and you’re sure to hear steam trains passing by. You might not see them though as the woodland which surrounds the Rail Trail is quite dense.

Getting to Grosmont and Goathland

The Ordnance Survey map OL27, the North Yorkshire Moors – Eastern area covers this part of the moors. With this map you also get a code for use on your tablet, iOS or Android smartphone. Landranger maps are available in both the standard paper version and weatherproof ‘Active’ version.

Both villages have car parking (pay and display) available and are well signed from the A169 Whitby to Pickering road. They are also both on the North Yorkshire Moors Railway accessible from Pickering and Whitby. Grosmont is also on the Esk Valley railway line, owned by Network Rail, which runs between Middlesborough and Whitby. You could also travel on the Coastliner bus service from Leeds, York, Malton and Pickering which runs to Goathland (not Grosmont). This was voted Britain’s most scenic bus journey. You can get to Grosmont by bus from Whitby. Catch the 95 bus service which is operated by Arriva.

Walk from Grosmont to Beck Hole and Goathland

Grosmont to Beck Hole

Start at Grosmont station, turn left to go over the crossing and follow the road uphill through the village. Turn right opposite Park Villa, the large red brick house. Go through the gate that takes you into Doctor’s Wood. Follow the path as it meanders through the wood and crosses over Lythe Beck on a footbridge.

The path leaves the wood onto a minor road, turn left onto the road for a short while. Just before a metal gate look to the right for a Public Footpath which will take you into Craig Cliff Wood. Enter the wood and follow the Stone trod. When you come to a footbridge, continue across two fields (with stiles) with the wood close to your right-hand side.

Cross the stile at the end of the field, cross a second stile and continue ahead. Cross the stream and head uphill. At the top where you leave the wood, go through the gate and turn left onto a wide farm track. Follow the track to some buildings (Green End) and continue on the track towards the public road. Turn left and in about 100m turn right onto a Public Footpath which runs through Liberty Hall Farm.

Walk through the farmyard and where the track bends sharp right, continue ahead towards the farm at Hollin Garth. Once you reach the farm turn right onto Beck Hole Road. Follow this over the railway bridge and down into Beck Hole.

Beck Hole to Goathland

Just before the “White House” in Beck Hole turn right down a path marked “Murk Esk and Rail Trail”. Then turn left to follow the path to Incline Cottage and uphill to Goathland. If you want to shorten your walk you can return to Grosmont on the Rail Trail, turn right instead of left.

As you arrive in Goathland, turn right towards the main street and car park and then turn left onto the main street to reach the railway station.

Goathland to Grosmont via Rail Trail

From Goathland station, the return walk to Grosmont is via the “Rail Trail”. This is a well-marked route. The first mile reverses the walk down Incline Slope to Beck Hole. This time though it’s all downhill! Once you’ve reached Incline Cottage and Beck Hole continue on the well-signed path to Grosmont. The path is pretty much level all the way now except for a short uphill section just before Grosmont. Once you’ve passed the old mining cottages, follow the track along the side of the railway. If you’re lucky a steam train might pass by.

At the kissing gate turn left and follow the path uphill. Go through the gate and turn right, there is a great view over Grosmont from here. Turn left through the gate, walk down past the church, cross the footbridge and, at the
road, turn left for the station.

Holiday Cottages

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