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Pen-y-Ghent and Plover Hill

Yorkshire Dales National Park

A great way to extend the trip over Pen-y-Ghent and see some rarely-traveled terrain

Hiking Severe

18 km
574 m
575 m
4-5 hrs
Low Point
216 m
High Point
691 m
Pen-y-Ghent and Plover Hill Map

Doable from either Helwith Bridge or Horton in Ribblesdale, this is a wonderful loop over a famous summit. This route is about half the length of the famous Yorkshire 3 Peaks route, so it's a nice option for those who want to sample the area without committing to the full 3 Peaks.


We've drawn the route from Helwith Bridge, which is home to an excellent little pub (the Helwith Bridge Inn). Start by climbing up the wide track known as Long Lane and follow it as it heads directly for the impressive upper part of Pen-y-Ghent. There's a section of easy scrambling on the upper slopes of the peak, followed by a beautiful stone path which leads to the top.

The cairn which marks the summit enjoys some spectacular views, and there's also a small walled shelter which will come in handy on windy days - of which there are many! From the top of Pen-y-Ghent, follow a vague path across the barren hillside which leads to the indistinct summit of Plover Hill.

From here descend north down a steep trail down to meet Foxup Road, a beautiful path which leads you down to Horton Scar Lane - a major track which will likely be much busier than the trail that took you to it. Follow the lane as it winds down into Horton in Ribblesdale and then stroll back through peaceful fields alongside the River Ribble back to Helwith Bridge.

Grab a drink at the Helwith Bridge Inn and enjoy toasting your day from the riverside terrace.



Hiking challenging trails where simple scrambling, with the occasional use of the hands, is a distinct possibility. The trails are often filled with all manner of obstacles both small and large, and the hills are very steep. Obstacles and challenges are often unexpected and can be unpredictable.

High Exposure

3 out of 4

Some trail sections have exposed ledges or steep ascents/descents where falling could cause serious injury.


3 out of 4

Little chance of being seen or helped in case of an accident.

Best time to visit

between April and September


  • Wildlife
  • Picturesque
  • Summit Hike
  • Dog friendly

Similar routes nearby

Guidebooks in this area