THE LYKE WAKE WALK GUIDE
For people considering completing the Lyke Wake Walk, essential reading is The Lyke Wake Walk Guide by Brian Smailes, now in its fourth edition (2013) and available direct from Challenge Publications or via this website. This contains helpful hints on the equipment needed and the best preparation for attempting the Walk. The route is described in detail, with full colour maps and photos, and also the rendezvous points are indicated, where a support team can meet walkers. However, the moors are a living landscape, and any guide book, even this one, will go out of date almost as soon as it is published. We have therefore prepared an extra web page describing the latest route changes, designed to be printed out as a single-sheet supplement the Guide.
The North York Moor is a fragile environment and in hot weather there is the additional risk of devastating fire. Do NOT light fires or barbecues in or near the moorland and you MUST ensure that all smoking materials are extinguished carefully and that all litter, especially glass containers, is taken home. It is possible that the moors could be closed due to extreme fire risk (this happened twice in Summer 2006). The New Lyke Wake Club suggests that walk organisers check the current position via this website or the latest news on the North York Moors National Park Authority website.
The Met Office Fire Severity Index is an assessment of the current day's fire severity and a forecast of the fire severity over the coming five days. The index values are from 1 to 5, which represents an increasing degree of fire severity. You can see a map showing the fire severity index of the North York Moors for any one of the next five days, by following this link to the Natural England website (in the drop-down list pick National Parks: North York Moors).
The weather can be extremely varied on the moors and can change quickly. A pleasant day in Osmotherley can turn nasty up on the moors. The Met Office website has weather forecasts for Osmotherley (at the western end of the walk), Round Hill, Low Mill, Wheeldale, Fylingdales and near Ravenscar at the eastern end. Bear in mind that some of these places are on relatively low ground and the weather on top may be more severe. There is also a weather station right on the walk at Fylingdales where you can see the latest weather observations, updated every hour.
While we tend to hear about walks once they have happened, occasionally we learn of planned crossings where the organisers are happy to accomodate extra walkers. Please ensure that groups are kept small, ideally of no more than 10 people – this is to prevent the route ‘widening’ and it returning to the eroded state of yesteryear.
If you are making an unsupported crossing, either solo or as a small party, make sure somebody is aware of your plans so that they can raise the alarm if you fail to turn up at the other end. The Ramblers website has a useful page on mountain and hill walking.
Coverage of the Lyke Wake Walk is provided by Cleveland Search and Rescue from Osmotherley to The Lion Inn and by Scarborough & Ryedale Mountain Rescue Team onwards to Ravenscar. In 2009 the Club made donations to both teams to support their work.
We cannot recommend too highly that you should use an appropriate map of the entire area. The New Club sells the Harvey Map of the area which has the entire Lyke Wake walk route marked and / or the 1:25,000 Ordnance Survey Explorer maps of the North York Moors covered by two sheets, OL26 (West) and OL27 (East) which is printed on both sides. The OS Maps are widely available from bookshops and online retailers.
Please consult the facilities page for a list of places to stay or camp, refreshment stops, etc.
THE COUNTRYSIDE CODE
The New Lyke Wake Club encourages people attempting the Lyke Wake Walk to follow the Countryside Code. The latest version was issued in 2021.
- Respect other people
- • Consider the local community and other people enjoying the outdoors
- • Leave gates and property as you find them and follow paths unless wider access is available
- Protect the natural environment
- • Leave no trace of your visit and take your litter home
- • Keep dogs under effective control
- Enjoy the outdoors
- • Plan ahead and be prepared
- • Follow advice and local signs