The Westmorland Dales is the area of the Yorkshire Dales National Park, within Cumbria, that lies to the north of the Howgill Fells with the Orton and Asby fells at its heart. It is also the focus of a Heritage Lottery funded landscape partnership scheme which seeks to engage people in revealing, conserving and enjoying the hidden heritage of this unique area. One of the projects, Revealing the Foundations, is focussing on the area’s geology.
This walk will look at how the landscape has been shaped by it its underlying geology, principally carboniferous limestone, then sculpted by ice, rain and people over thousands of years into the landscape we see today. The area boasts classic karst scenery, with some of the best limestone pavements in the country, fantastic fossils and evidence of the glaciers that once scoured the landscape.
Activity grade: Moderate with one or two areas of steeply sloping ground.
Meeting point: Meet outside the market hall in the centre of Orton.
Time: 10am – 3pm
The walk will be led by Dr Elizabeth Pickett, an independent geologist who has worked in the North Pennines and the Yorkshire Dales, and recently produced an excellent report on the area’s geology. It will also look at the link between geology, biodiversity and the built heritage of the area, not least its dry stone walls and other man-made landscape features.
David Evans - Westmorland Dales Landscape Partnership Development Officer
Dr Elizabeth Pickett - Independent Geologist