Beginning from Castle Hill, this eight and a half mile stroll encounters landscape that is quite unlike what we are used to in Calderdale, writes Caroline Spalding.
It ventures across farmland with views beyond the Holme Valley, and at this time of year, despite the muddy ground, it is relatively easy going.
I undertook this walk having recently become aware of the existence of the Holme Valley Circular Walk [HVCW], a 24-mile hike beginning from Berry Brow, Huddersfield.
Unlikely to complete this in one fell swoop, I intend to complete this throughout the year in segments, by way of circular walks.
This is the first, beginning from the landmark that is Victoria Tower, atop Castle Hill. You’ll need OS Explorer map 288.
Leave the tower across the car park and begin the descending slope that is the exit route for vehicles.
At the second waymarked path, turn left for a short while, then at the first chance descend right down a steep bank to cross the fields beneath.
Continue straight ahead over a farm track and keep descending until meeting Lumb Lane [adhering to the left-hand side of the field].
Turn right along the lane until a way-marked path turns left just before some houses.
This continues towards some woodland, a gentle climb down to cross a stream via a basic footbridge.
Ascend the opposite bank, reaching a path cross-roads and continue ahead following the edge of a field until passing into another, larger woodland.
It’s privately owned, however the clear footpath takes you through, until meeting a stile, which you climb over to then ascend a field towards Farnley Tyas.
Bearing left at a plateau, pass through a gate, turn right along the track to reach the tarmac lane.
Turn right, then right again, pass the pub and cross the road to take the waymarked path immediately before the church yard.
The track gives way to open fields and farmland, a flat, well-trodden route passing through narrow passageways between stone walls.
At a point the pathways split, bear right towards the building, meet another lane, turn left then right along another farm track shortly until a way-marker [left] continues across fields.
Descend to meet Hall Ing Road. Turn right, taking the path [left] next to the property.
Continue along, with the land descending to your right and eventually meeting a collection of houses that is Thurstonland.
Cross the road, spotting a way-marker directing you ahead.
Leaving the houses behind, the gradient to your right steepens.
Continue beneath the wind turbines, beyond which you descend via a fairly clear path to meet a track below leading to another country lane.
Turn right for a short while, taking the first way-marked path on the left.
Follow the walled field edge until it curves, there, continue towards the clearly visible settlement ahead.
Meeting Fulstone Hall Lane, turn left through the hamlet, leaving the HVCW.
The road bends left and shortly afterwards there is a way-marker to follow [left] across farmland to re-ascend towards the farm itself.
Turn right at the track, pass right through the farm yard – beware cows and [friendly] guard dogs - continuing straight ahead.
Another gentle ascent [path unclear] - use the map for orientation to re-join a country lane.
Ascend left along the road until a T-junction [between Black House & Lumb House on map].
Bear left, then take the path [right] which brings you to meet the path by which you left Farnley Tyas earlier.
Retrace your steps back to Farnley Tyas, past the pub to the hilltop above Royd House Wood.
Here, keep heading west; the clear path curves around the woodland below, across several stiles and mirrors the road to the left.
Immediately before Arthur Wood [GR SE 156 132] turn left, over a stile, through a small field to a collection of houses.
Immediately beyond these, turn right, and another very distinct path will lead you to Castle Houses.
Here you can find a clear path bearing north-east towards Lumb Lane, where a gentle climb back up to the car park at Victoria Tower will conclude this very winter-friendly stroll
And if the tower is open, do go up it to appreciate the 360-degree views it has to offer.