Section 2 – West Vale to Norland

Updated 19/02/24

Length and time
3½ miles (5½km). Should take you 2 hours. 

17th century Clay House, North Dean Wood and great views of Wainhouse Tower on the opposite hillside 

Fairly gentle uphill at the start and then fairly level 

The route is mainly on tracks and good paths

There are a couple of stiles on the route


Bus access to the route
To West Vale 562 from Halifax: (ask to be put off at Clay House Lane on Stainland Road), from Norland: 561/2 to Halifax and Ripponden

1. Walk along Stainland Road towards West Vale (SE097214). Bear right up a tarmac lane beyond a small parking bay.

The inauspicious beginning of this section

2. The road becomes a stone setted track that bends round towards Clay House, a fine yeoman’s house built around 1650.

Clay House

3. Just before you get to the house, you do a hairpin right at a (misaligned) finger post to follow a well-used wide path through the trees.

4. The path bends to the left, passing a wall and a set of steps on the right. When you get to a fork, take the left-hand path going uphill, crossing a wall where you keep ahead.

North Dean Wood supports over 60 species of birds – some resident all year, some summer visitors.

There is a wide range of plant life, from mosses, liverworts and lichens to the mighty trees and some fungi, especially in the autumn. The many flowering plants include Heather, Bilberry, Wood Sorrel and Bluebells.

A section of the path through the moss-covered trees

5. You are joined by path coming in from the left and at a waymark post at a fork, bear left uphill to reach the top of North Dean Wood.

6. Now follow the raised path to the right, keeping walls and fences on your left and North Dean Woods below on your right. You stay on this fairly level path for about 1km – ignore paths heading downhill to the right.

7. The path ends at a stone gap stile onto a narrow tarmac Lane, where you turn right. After 100 metres bear left and follow the path below the wall. Go over a stile and skirt the edge of a pile of stones to re-join the top of a fence line. Follow this for 500 metres.

8. Passing a bungalow on your left the track comes out onto a main road where you turn right. You shortly reach Clough Moor Bridge (SE06922l) which is the end of this section.

Some Elf Cup fungi

9. Cross Clough Bridge and just after, take a waymarked path on the left, which is the beginning of the section across Norland Moor to Ripponden.