Outdoor Adventures


With Mark Reid FRGS – author of ‘The Inn Way’ & Mountain Leader

Lovely Seat – Great Shunner Fell – Hugh Seat – Little Fell – Sails
33 km (21 miles) – 950 metres of ascent – 11 hours

The Lovely Great Hike traces a high-level route around the high moors, hills and fells on the watershed between Wensleydale, Swaledale and Mallerstang, as the upper reaches of the Eden Valley are known. This long distance challenge walk starts and finishes in the lovely town of Hawes in Upper Wensleydale.

We also visit the source of the River Eden, which flows westwards into the Irish Sea, and the River Ure, which flows eastwards into the North Sea – truly the watershed of England!

lovely great hike Yorkshire Dales


The Lovely Great Hike is a 21 mile route with 950m of climbing that will take around 11 hours to complete. Essentially, the route follows the moors, hills and fells on the high moorland watershed between Wensleydale, Swaledale and the Upper Eden Valley (Mallerstang), including…

1. Lovely Seat – 675m
2. Great Shunner Fell – 716m
3. Hugh Seat (source of the River Eden) – 689m
4. Little Fell (source of the River Ure) – 667m
5. Sails – 666m

lovely great hike Yorkshire Dales

From Hawes, we head northwards to the village of Sedbusk, from where there is a climb up onto Stags Fell before we go ‘off piste’ across open heather moorland (passing beautiful gritstone crags and a mosaic of moorland colour) to reach the summit of Lovely Seat, where there is a seat made out of stone! We then drop down to the Buttertubs Pass, before climbing up across open moorland again to the summit of Great Shunner Fell, the 3rd highest fell top in the Yorkshire Dales. We then head westwards across more open moorland via the mysteriously named Market Place, which is just a rise of remote moorland, before reaching Hugh Seat and the source of the River Eden.  We then turn south along the moorland watershed of England to reach Little Fell and Sails and the source of the River Ure, before dropping down into beautiful Cotterdale and back to Hawes.

It is a demanding walk that requires a good level of fitness and so must be approached with preparation and training, but it is also a rewarding walk that will be remembered for many years for its variety of incredible views, amazing landscapes and diverse terrain. Much of this walk follows indistinct paths across exposed, open moorland and fells; some sections are pathless across rough, open and boggy ground.

This is a wild and remote challenge walk, away from the crowds.

Mark Reid knows the Yorkshire Dales like the back of his hand and will guide you around this route (whilst also sharing his knowledge of the area), so that you can forget about navigating and concentrate on enjoying the walk instead!

This guided walk is designed for solo or small groups of walkers who want to take on the Lovely Great Hike, but don’t want to worry about route finding.

  • Fully guided walk with Mark Reid (Mountain Leader)
  • Experience the comaraderie of walking a challenge route with other like-minded walkers
  • Discover the history, heritage, flora and fauna of the Yorkshire Dales
  • Share your sense of achievement with your fellow walkers
  • Small group sizes – maximum 8 people per walk
  • You are GUARANTEED not to get lost on our guided walk!

7:30am: Meet at Hawes. Weather forecast, gear check & briefing.
7:45am – 7pm: Fully guided walk around the Lovely Great Hike challenge walk
7pm: Debrief back at Hawes, then head home

NB: Distances, heights and finish time are approximate. The route may vary on the day, given weather, terrain and group needs.

lovely great hike Yorkshire Dales




This includes:

  • Full details of what to wear, bring and expect along the walk
  • Fully guided walk around the Lovely Great Hike challenge walk, with Mark Reid (Mountain Leader)
  • Use of our waterproof clothing & boots if required.
  • Completers' Certificate
  • TeamWalking Loyalty Reward scheme
NB: Please provide a packed lunch, lots of snack food and plenty of water for this walk, as well as a good pair of walking boots. Please see the Walk Overview for full details of what to wear, bring and general advice.