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Exercise-Other Nature-Hill Nature-River Nature-Rock formation Nature-View point Nature-Waterfall Settlement-Village
Malham, Skipton BD23 4DB, UK

Malham is a small but popular village in the Yorkshire dales surrounded by limestone dry-stone walls and a stream running through the centre. Its close proximity to the natural sights of Malham Tarn, Gordale Scar & Malham cove makes a great starting point to grab a map for hikes and walks around the varied Yorkshire countryside. From the village, a short 20 minute walk north takes you to the giant limestone formation of Malham Cove, a waterfall dating back to the ice age formed this unique 80 metre cliff face over thousands of years. Ascend the stairs to the top and reach the rugged limestone pavements for one of the best places to view the dales stunning landscape. Walk further north to reach Malham Tarn, England's highest freshwater lake and home to a rare variety of plants and wildlife. If you are lucky, you may spot deer or otters lurking as you walk around the tarn, though be sure to wear sensible footwear as the ground changes from rocky pavements to muddy marshland quickly. Head back south passing the huge cavern and flowing water of Gordale Scar to arrive at the picturesque setting of Janet's Foss, a small but beautiful waterfall and pool nestled in woodland. The secluded and silent space gives a magical and mysterious aura, a nearby tree stump even holds hundreds of pennies left by visitors hoping for some luck. This clockwise loop brings you back to the village, the perfect place to rest your legs and quench your thirst as you sample some of Yorkshire's finest ales in the cosy country pubs. Image Credit Chris Cunliffe

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Nature-Cliffs Nature-River Nature-Rock formation Nature-View point
Malham, Skipton BD23, UK

A short amble from Malham village, along the trickling river of Malham Beck, is a mesmerising amphitheatre of rock, 80 metres high. This feature formed along the Middle Craven Fault and has been eroded by previous ice ages and rainfall over the years. There are multiple walking opportunities from here to explore the surrounding nature area. You can hike to the top of the limestone plateau to get views from the Pennine Way trail. You might also recognise the unusual warped rocks as a setting that featured in Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows. These Clints (the limestone mounds) and Grykes (the gaps) are a rare feature in the UK. They create a specialist habitat and unusual micro-climate for wild flower species including: wood sorrel, Green Spleenwort, Wall Rue, and Herb Robert. Watch out for nesting peregrine falcons in the cliffs as this is an RSPB site of interest. During the spring the birds may be more active than usual when their eggs are hatching. If you want to see more of the surrounding landscape, follow a 7.9km loop to Janet's Foss waterfall and Gordale Scar. Janet's Foss is a small but pretty waterfall set amongst a woodland. Its plunge pool has been used by farmers as a sheep dip and swimmers as a recreational area for many years. It's also supposedly home to Jennet the Queen of the Fairies. She is said to live in one of the caves - if you believe the myth! Gordale Scar is a deep limestone gorge, also carved out from ice and water. Lining the walls is an unusually shaped mineral deposit called tufa. Rainwater dissolved into the limestone then leaked the tufa out of the rock creating the scree you see lining Gordale Scar today. To the north of the cove is Malham Tarn, a National Trust owned glacial lake. It is the highest marlstone lake in the UK. It is also part of an exclusive club of water features and is only one of eight upland alkaline lakes found throughout Europe. A ramble from Malham Cove to the tarn will set you back about 11 km. Image Credits: Dan Blackburn on Unsplash

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