Head for the country

The Grainary, set in picturesque rolling countryside
The Grainary, set in picturesque rolling countryside

Written by Maureen Robinson

Hopefully, with spring just ahead, the ground will be drying out once more and cross-country walking more pleasurable.

Meanwhile, even when cold winds blow, enjoy this country walk along delightful lanes with remarkable views in all directions.

Cyclists, and motorists who prefer home comforts, will also take pleasure in this route – especially mid-way refreshment at The Grainary.

The starting point is Reasty Bank car park. Access is by taking the A171 Scalby road from Scarborough, only as far as Newby’s Rosette Inn. Here, turn left and follow the signs to Hackness until the village of Suffield is reached.

Turn right at Suffield to follow the road all the way to the brow of the hill to the Forestry Commission’s ‘Broxa Forest and Reasty Bank’. Park your vehicle in the spacious car park.

From Reasty Hill Top, descend Reasty Road, which gently winds its way into the lovely valley. At a fork in the road, turn right and the lane leads over Gatela Bridge and swings right to a road junction. Turn right at the junction into Harwood Dale, shortly passing Hardwick Farm to your right, before zig-zagging through the village.

Rising out of the village, prominently sited near the bend is The Grainary Hotel. What a fabulous setting for refreshment, either indoors or out, depending on the weather.

You couldn’t wish for finer views and you’ll welcome a break for a cuppa or a meal.

Just north of The Grainary is Brooklands Farm. Then the road elbows right at the brow of the hill, and as you stride along Moor End Road, the vistas are superb.

After about a mile, leave the road and turn off down Waite Lane, with views to distant forestry reaching to the horizon, eg Surgate Brow and several noddles.

Beyond Thirley Cote Farm and Thirley Banks Cottage, the lane bends sharply and makes a gradual descent, only to re-ascend and pass Surgate Brow Farm and the steep dramatic woodland of Surgate Brow.

Meeting the Reasty Road at Thieves’ Dyke near Turkey Carpet, turn right and follow this direct route through what is mainly larch plantation bordered with pine trees.

Walkers will discover a prettier alternative. Just enter the forest to the right, where you’ll find a track keeping close company with the road. It will return you more peacefully and safely, directly into Reasty Bank car park.

Distance: 5.5 miles approximately.

Refreshment: The Grainary in Harwood Dale.

Footnote. Harwood Dale is in the parish of Hackness, seven or eight miles north-west of Scarborough. In this picturesque dale flows one of the sources of the River Derwent.

Lord Derwent is the owner of almost all the land – the greater part of which is the bleak and barren moorland. The remainder consists of arable, and pasture land.

Querns and stone instruments have been dug up in this neighbourhood.

The Grainary provides not only a great variety of refreshment, but beautiful walks in the area. Children will love to meet and greet the farm animals too. A great day out for all the family.