Time: 45 – 60 minutes.
Easy walking, a short uphill section, pleasant and varied views, good birdlife.
Not suitable for prams, buggies or wheelchairs.

Starting from Sedbergh Information & Book Centre turn left along Main Street.

72 Main Street

At the end of the street, head right and cross over Back Lane into Vicarage Lane.

Vicarage Lane

Follow the lane as it bends left. On your right here you will see the recently planted Community Orchard.

Community Orchard

Pass the entrance to the Old Vicarage, then go through a narrow gap in the stone wall and past the back of two schools, first Sedbergh Primary School and then Settlebeck School, one of the smallest and best secondary schools in the country. You will also pass school playing fields and tennis courts on your right.

Old Vicarage

At the school car park bear right around the edge on a tarmac path, following the signs to the River Rawthey and a picnic area. Where the path ends, go right, down a slope onto a track that takes you around the playing field.

Picnic area

Go through the gate into the picnic area, turn right on a footpath beside the river, cross a small stream on a wooden bridge and shortly you will arrive at the weir. This is a good spot to stop and look out for birds such as heron or dipper. In late autumn you may see salmon leaping.

The weir

Continue along the path for a short distance – you will notice it is now on a levee which protects the fields from flooding – and shortly the path drops down to the right. Go through a gate, along a narrow path beside a stream, originally the mill race for Millthrop Mill, through a second gate and into a field where you will see Winder House, one of Sedbergh School’s boarding houses, up on the hill ahead.

Winder House

Head up to the top of the hill, keeping Winder House on your right. You will see a single tree in a gap between two stone walls and, near the top of the slope, another path coming in through a narrow gap in the wall on the left. Keeping the wall of the school house on your right, go over the brow of the hill, and down the other side and through the kissing gate. There are good views of Sedbergh and the Howgills from here.

Sedbergh from Winder House

Now either go straight ahead down the hill to re-join Vicarage Lane; or turn left onto a tarmac track which takes you to the Dent Road. To the left in front of you is the Sedbergh School Chapel and, to the right, an entrance to the school.

Sedbergh School chapel

Turn into the school grounds, passing school buildings on your left and playing fields on your right. As the path begins to rise turn right onto a path which continues around the playing field. At the end of this path, you can either turn right and return straight to the town or you can turn left for a short distance, past the modern science block on your left, to a kissing gate on the right. Go through this and over March Hill down to the main road and turn right back into Sedbergh.

March Hill

Words by Hilary Dixon, photos by Chris Wood