Sunday, 24 April 2016

Malham Cove - Waterfalls, limestone and Harry Potter

I recently visited Malham Cove in North Yorkshire on a VERY rainy day. Despite the downpours, the walk we did was beautiful and in fact, the extra water meant that we saw some pretty spectacular sights. 
Malham Cove Limestone Pavement

"We'll go to Malham Cove," Mr T said. Images of cocktails and sandy beaches flashed before my eyes... "It's only a 5 mile walk and the rain isn't THAT bad..." he added. Nevertheless, I was game and off we went. Boy am I glad we did!

Malham Cove (despite the cocktail and sandy beach images) is nowhere near the sea. In fact, it's a natural limestone curved cliff. On top, the limestone pavement is created from massively eroded limestone, leaving behind fissures and cracks that you leap over and marvel at. To get there, you can do a short 1 mile walk from the village of Malham or a longer circular walk taking in Janet's Foss and Gordale Scar. Do the longer's WELL worth it. 

Janet's Foss

Malham Cove Limestone Pavement Janets Foss

Janet's Foss is a small waterfall thought to be the place where a fairy queen lived in a cave at the back of the waterfall. It was really full of water the day that we went, one bonus to walking in the rain.

The walk over to Janet's Foss is surrounded by wild garlic which created a distinctive smell en route but as you turn to see this waterfall, it's all been worth it. 

Gordale Scar

Malham Cove Limestone Pavement Gordale Scar

Gordale Scar is a little further along and is a limestone ravine containing two waterfalls. The stream is the same stream that flows over Janet's Foss. You can climb up the gorge but we returned to the path and carried on to the limestone pavement. 

Malham Cove - limestone pavement

Malham Cove Limestone Pavement view

I chose to walk above the limestone pavement - the rain had made it SO slippy. However, those two intrepid explorers are Mr T and his pops looking out over the rolling hills from the edge of the limestone pavement. It's like a jigsaw puzzle!! 

Malham Cove Limestone Pavement Once  we'd climbed down the steps at the side of the limestone pavement, we explored the bottom of the cliff. The stream seems to spring up out of the ground - Mr T informs me that it soaks down through the limestone and bubbles up out of the ground. I had to do a bit of paddling to get to this point but standing at the bottom of the cliff and looking up was breathtaking.

Malham Cove Limestone Pavement money tree
I love these money trees - I know not everyone does but I think they're really striking.

Malham Cove Limestone Pavement  I can't even describe to you how close I got to this cow. The herd were on the path back into Malham and I took this from the other side of the wall. I could have reached out and stroked it. 
Malham Cove Limestone Pavement
The view back to Malham Cove on the way down the steps.

And some fun Malham Cove facts - Malham Cove has featured in many films and TV shows - Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 1 (although apparently it was digitally inserted...!), Wuthering Heights as well as The Trip and Julia Bradbury's Best Walk with a View. 

Where are your favourite places to visit? 

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