Length: 4.0 miles (you could make it slightly longer by making a detour up to Castle Hill).
Duration: 1 – 1½ hours. Although it’s not that long, it’s quite hilly in places, with a total climb of 650 ft!
Difficulty: Moderate. Although it’s a fairly short distance covered, it did take quite a while because it was hilly and very muddy in parts – you definitely need waterproof walking boots or wellies at this time of year!
Terrain: Beautiful Yorkshire Countryside! Farmers’ fields and woodland tracks. The walk follows public footpaths through Farnley Estate and through farmers fields, taking in the views of Castle Hill.
Dog Friendly: This all depends on where livestock are. There are a few fields with horses and some that have sheep in. We didn’t actually walk through any fields that had sheep on this occasion. You do walk through a small amount of nature reserve where dogs have to be ‘under close control’ and there are a few roads to cross. The dogs didn’t mind but make sure the gates are closed behind you!
Start Point: You can park in The Golden Cock car park provided it’s not too busy (or icy – I’ve had my car stuck in that car park before!). The postcode is HD4 6UD.
I did this walk with Leo, Max and my mum on a blustery Wednesday morning in December. It was super windy (partly because the majority of the walk was on high ground) but unusually warm for this time of year. It had been 2 ºC the previous day, so I was well wrapped up, but eventually had to take off my hat and scarf and open the vents on my jacket!
Go past the primary school on the right; the day we actually did this walk was the day of their school nativity. We saw the kids all walking towards the church in pairs in their outfits ready for the play, who let out squeals of delight as they saw the dogs, ‘The big one is my favourite’, referring to Leo the leggy giant. I would have taken a photo as it was cute but it’s generally frowned upon to take photos of kids that aren’t your own…
Anyway so after the school you go through a little gate to the right through the woods. There are small signposts on the trees which have been put there by Farnley Estates, and they’re pretty easy to follow for this short section of the walk.
The woodland in this area is really beautiful, and I think the photo above pretty much summarises the walk in terms of terrain. The dogs love sticks being thrown in the woods; they won’t rest until they found the exact stick that you threw, and it’s always a race between Leo and Max, although Leo is a sore loser and will fight Max for it if he gets there first! Cheeky thing!
Follow the Farnley Estate signs, staying high to the left, but still in the woods, until you get to a road with a stable and livery opposite. Turn left and follow it around until you turn right at a small farm track at Ludhill Lane. If your pooches are well behaved, it’s ok to let them off here, provided you can call them to you if there’s farm traffic approaching.
Coming to the end of this track, Castle Hill and the Victoria Tower come into view straight ahead in the distance and on a clear day there are fantastic views across Honley, Netherton and other surrounding villages. This is where I noticed it was super windy, and the track as you drop down hill towards Honley is very muddy, be careful!
I haven’t included a photo of Castle Hill and the Victoria tower just here because we do get much closer to the 19th Century monument further along the walk.
Keep following the path down hill and eventually you end up at a road (Hall Ings Road) in Honley, you’re actually quite close to Honley Train Station at this point, so if you’re stuck for car transport, you could get the train to Honley and walk up to The Golden Cock and back from there.
Follow the road along past a couple of houses (see awesome country door bell above!) and turn left at the public footpath sign. The path winds through fern, brambles and holly. As it’s nearly Christmas, I thought a photo of some holly, complete with berries (!) was appropriate.
Keep going downhill and follow the path through a series of wooded areas and fields. In the bottom of the woods is a stream with some breeze block stepping stones across. Max and Leo were straight in the water at this point. Max dives in and then looks up at you as if he’s done something really good. The two of them are filthy anyway at this point, so a little plodge in the stream is quite welcome.
Following the path along, it gently turns uphill through a field next to some amazing houses with stunning views. Go through the small cluster of houses and you’re heading for the main road from Honley to Farnley Tyas (Northgate).
Theres a small area when you cross the road and enter the next section of the walk that is marked as Upper Park Wood Nature Reserve, managed by the Yorkshire Wildlife Trust. Your dog needs to be on a lead for this short section, but as you climb up towards Castle Hill, passing the Hey Lane Cemetery on your left, you can let them off the lead again. This point of the walk was quite exposed. Even though it was warm, the wind was biting at the top!
Cross the road at the top and follow the path towards Lumb Head Farm. Again, there can be livestock in these fields, so be careful with your dogs. Make sure you close the gates and it’s also quite muddy around this area. There are fantastic views out towards Castle Hill and the Victoria Tower at this point, but you can get closer if you wish!
As you go through the farm (you definitely need dogs on leads), there are a few signposts marking public footpaths. There’s one that goes up to the left which can take you on a (fairly steep!) detour up towards Castle Hill and Victoria Tower. You can actually go into the tower, but it’s not something I’ve ever done myself so I couldn’t tell you what’s there, other than spectacular views over Huddersfield from the top of the hill!
When you walk out of the farm, follow the road down to the right. There’s a public footpath that takes you down through the fields to the right, then through to some woods with a stream in the bottom and a little bridge over.
As you follow the path around to a clearing in the woods, you want to take the path straight ahead that cuts across the fields and into another wood. You’re heading back towards Farnley Tyas now, so it’s all uphill from here!
It can get very slippery underfoot on the steep hill that runs up through the woods, so please take care not to fall (something I’ve done before at this point – I was covered in mud!). The final stretch is through a field where there are often (but not always) sheep. By this point though you will be glad of a pull up the hill from your dog on the lead!
And finally you will arrive back at the village in Farnley Tyas. The Golden Cock is on your right, where you can get good food and the dogs are allowed in the bar area.
Unfortunately, I was unlucky in the sense that I hadn’t booked a table so they were full – with a 40 minute wait in the bar area! This is a pub that I have been to before however, so although there isn’t a full review on this site (yet!), I will review it in future.
Today, however, I chucked the dogs in the back of the car and headed to Thurstonland, where there is a lovely pub called the Rose & Crown. You can also walk to this pub from Farnley Tyas, so perhaps that’s a walk for another day!
Thank you for reading this post. If you get chance to do this walk, I’d love to see your photos and hear your comments. Please feel free to contact me with any feedback!