Wednesday, 20 February 2013

Warrendale Knots Part 3

Hello Again!  Well, we've just had a nice long rest at the summit (the highest point up on the left of the photo above) so it's time to head off via the Citadel as the mist is on its way.

Besides - the rocks on the summit do get a bit bumpy on the bottom after a while.  If you are feeling fitter than me you can head along that grassy ridge in front for a bird's eye view of Settle - my favourite town in Britain.

Our way on is down to the vicinity of that obvious dark gully in front (when you get there you will see it's not a cave).  The outcrop of limestone you can see - the 'Citadel' is well worth a detailed exploration, and if you look very carefully from here you can just see the Citadel Pinnacle - as I call it - down to the right of the gully.

A last farewell to the woolly ones. Baaaaa Bye!

Once you have scrambled down onto the top of the Citadel you are back with this view of the Dome and its companions ...

Heading down the scree reveals the Citadel in all its glory.  See the two isolated limestone men at the top right which guided my way down?  They are the Sentinels of course, guarding the Citadel.  I can carry on down the scree if I wish, but there's an hour of daylight left, so let's head back up to that enticing cave entrance for a few minutes ...

This is Raven's Cave, piecing the face of the Citadel and usually full of animal bones.  To this day, I don't know what that strange black object is in the centre???  It certainly wasn't there when I entered so could these ravens be capable of paranormal goings on????

Anyway - the view out is worth the squeeze inside.

Still more awaits the explorer.  Heading along to the opposite corner of the Citadel and we meet the Pinnacle.  Scramble up behind it towards Skull Gully for the best view.

Citadel Pinnacle - you won't find this in a book.  

This is a tremendous and little known feature of the Settle landscape and a sense of the scale can best be gained by squeezing through the gap to the right, between the Pinnacle and the cliff.  Amazing to think there was once a cave here, but a series of glaciations have put paid to that!

I've now scrambled up to Skull Gully and the Pinnacle comes into view with Sugar Loaf Hill Beyond.  The entrance to the Gully (remember it looked like a cave from the summit) is on the left.  Peering inside, the skull - once recognised, will stay with you.

Now come on - he's grinning down at you just a tiny bit right of centre.  Use your imagination!

Or try this - reverse back on your computer chair - slowly now - bit by bit - and watch him, staring you out.  You'll get used to me being like this.  He's ok with me, but insult him at your peril.  If you love limestone you're safe enough.

'Ba Ba Rock Sheep'

Mind you - he's not as impressive as this Sheep I found earlier, up near the summit.  I hope nobody else sees him as he's mine.

Or try this one!  Look skywards in Skull Gully and there's a guy with a big nose having a conversation with a smaller person on the right.  I call these Gladstone and Victoria.

Back to normality - if it's possible - having scrambled down to the valley from Skull Gully we re-trace our steps towards Sugar Loaf Hill and back towards the car.  The cavern you can see punctuating the clifftop on the top right of the picture is Lookout Cave.  I'll take you there another day as long as you don't mind heights.

Warrendale Knots, top centre and left, from the air.  The isolated circular 'lump' (slightly left at the top) is the Dome, and the plateau of the Great Knott is on the far left.  The distinctive limestone pavement on top of the Citadel can be made out.  Sugar Loaf Hill is the rounded knoll at bottom centre.  The parking spot is just to the left of the 'Google' logo, between the Roman Camp and Scaleber Force.  Attermire Scar, home of famous discoveries, is the white limestone mass in the top right quadrant.

Comments on my Warrendale Knots adventure would be welcome.  If interest generates I will post the full chapter!!



  1. The hill you named Great Knot, or rather the crags on the south-west side were named Beacon Scar on the first Victorian OS map. Sadly none of the other Knots are so-named (unless you include Blue Crags to the west end of the Knots which was named Blua). In fact the area named Warrendale Knots was confined on that map to the area between two walls, one in the east runs between Attermire Scar and the Knots and the other is now just a ruined footing of a wall running between the 'Citadel' and your Great Knot.

  2. A further note - The 'Roman camp' noted between Sugar Loaf Hill and Stockdale Lane end is now not beleived to be an archaeological feature at all but a natural one cut by paths (Archaeological Data Service).
    There is, however, an ancient settlement on the far side of Attermire Scar. If you follow the footpath beneath Attermire Scar heading east you will enter a small field sub-divided by fencing. At the far side of that you enter a second field with two small marshy rills joining together at the foot of it and a tractor/quad track running uphill. Above the rills and to the east of the little grassy track is a large sub-circular depression and other roughly circular earthworks, and at least one sub-rectangular one, between the quad track and the far wall just a few metres uphill of the far gate.
    Coins of the Roman era were found here and the site is believed to be a Romano-British native settlement and probably gave rise to the name Halsteads, which is now given to the marsh below.
    I suspect the marsh below was the original 'Attermire' and the settlement (or its later ruins) named Halsteads from Hallr and stadr, two Old Norse words meaning 'Slope' and 'settlement' !
    There are also the remains of a 19th to 20th century artillary range below Warrendale Knots - those big plates of rusty metal with the shell holes in them!

    1. Thank-you very much for that. I really appreciate the feedback. Beacon Scar makes sense now as there is a ruined beacon like feature at the summit. I have always adored these features and over the years we have had great fun unofficially bestowing names on them. It's a shame they were never named properly. I seem to remember the 'citadel' being mentioned by Wainwright and the old 'Guide to Settle' and it is such an imposing feature, though the cave is Raven's Cave in 'Northern Caves' so I wondered if it might have been another Raven Scar? I must revise my work for the Roman Camp. I must admit, having visited scores of such features, it has never really impressed me, but I had no idea it was now considered natural. I have not visited the Attermire site you mention, but have sort of deciphered its whereabouts from above. Thanks for the instructions. I will check it out! The reference to Halsteads fascinates me. Yes, I know the ranges. Weren't they used to train locals as possible soldiers for
      the french wars in the 19th century? Is Halsteads still marked on 19th century maps? I really appreciate the time you have gone to with this feedback and hope you find something of interest on the blog. Just wondering if you are a member of the local archaeology group? Do you know exactly when and why Attermire was drained? Feel free to email me with any further info at my personal address.
      Many thanks