Explore the hidden dry valleys around Fridaythorpe

  • Thixendale valley, Yorkshire Wolds Way, Fridaythorpe
Fridaythorpe is the best place to explore the characteristic dry valleys of the Yorkshire Wolds. The network of dry valleys, known locally as ‘dales’ or ‘slacks’, which dissect the Yorkshire Wolds plateau, offer fantastic opportunities to experience peace and tranquility.

From higher ground the Yorkshire Wolds appears to be a gently rolling landscape with expansive open views. Up close it looks quite different, with numerous steep-sided valleys criss-crossing the landscape and giving the area a unique character all of its own.

The dry valleys were created at the end of the last ice age, around 18,000 years ago, when the action of fast-running streams flowing over frozen ground carved out the valleys. The chalk on which the Yorkshire Wolds landscape has formed allows water to drain so efficiently that the valleys run dry. Discover these steep sided dry valleys on the Fridaythorpe circuit: a circular walk which follows the Yorkshire Wolds Way for some of the route.

The walk starts and ends in the village of Fridaythorpe, the mid-way point of the Yorkshire Wolds Way. Whilst in Fridaythorpe be sure to seek out the WANDER artwork, disguised as a bus shelter, which provides a great place for walkers to have a rest and enjoy a picnic. The route also allows you to discover artwork by Chris Drury, called ‘Waves and Time, again created as part of the WANDER project. This amazing artwork was inspired by the ice and water that shaped the landscape. It incorporates a dewpond and gentle grassy mounds representing lines of ancient waterways.

Location map

© Crown copyright and database rights 2013. Ordnance Survey 100021930.
Wayrham Picnic Area or Road Parking in Fridaythorpe
11 km (7 miles)
4½ hours
OS Map: 
OS 294