Actually the title is misleading, but kept as it sounded good; the walk goes round the “moor” north of the Tarn and only back along its north bank, and includes the wonderful boardwalk near the Tarn for a floral treat. It has 7.6 miles of limestone scenery, completely avoiding the crowds around the Cove and village. I’ve started at the track pull-off at Street Gate, but you could use the car park south of the Tarn. Go east through the gate and carry on the track to the Roman camp, marked by a plaque on a stone. Otherwise you might not know, as there’s not much to see: it was a “marching” camp, so temporary anyway. Walk across the grass to the north-east corner of the camp, past shake holes and a pond, to find the obvious path, and take that northwards. As you approach Gordale Beck (underground here) an ATV track veers leftwards, but keep on a level as the wall stile is ahead and not down in the valley. Keep on towards Middle House Farm, through a gate out of the Open Access and follow the signs. Look out for the FP sign over to the left by the farm track and head for that. A Bridleway takes you up the hill, and splits after the next wall, you take the left split, wending its way across limestone upland. Before the next wall you can see the remains of a “settlement”, possibly Romano-British, the sunken circular house sites and a low wall higher up. Some internet posts seems to put the house sites south of here, but they are wrong! Return to the track and carry on, at present over a wall in the middle of a depression, with broken wire on top. This would cause a problem if mended. Another example of a marked path on the map in Open Access land but with restricted movement. The “path” then leads to a defile which might be easier to avoid by climbing its left side and descending more easily, to aim for the Pennine Way path at the obvious wall corner. Follow this pleasantly to the Malham Tarn circular track. Here turn right, then left at the next turn, to find the one-way track left, taking you round the boardwalk on boggy ground, full of flowers in spring and summer. Back at the Pennine Way, go right on it and round the NT Tarn House, to see some Slipper orchids in a cage on the right just past the house, early June being the best time. When Great Close Scar is seen on the left you can either branch left on a track under it and right at the next track to your car, or carry straight on then left.
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