Yorkshire Dales

The Yorkshire Dales is a region in the northern English county of North Yorkshire, West Yorkshire and Cumbria. The Yorkshire Dales in the narrower sense are the valleys north of the River Wharfe.


The Dales have their name from the Danish word dale ( = valley).

Most Dales are named after the river flowing through it ( → Swale Swaledale ) or vice versa ( Deepdale Deepdale Beck → ). The best-known exception is Wensleydale, which is named after the village of Wensley and is drained by the River Ure.


The Dales ' U ' and ' V - shaped valleys that were formed by glaciers, especially the most recent ice age. The mountain consists mainly of limestones and exhibits pronounced karst formations such as caves, canyons, Flussversinkungen ( the best known is Gaping Gill) and vast, rugged limestone surfaces.

The area of ​​the Dales is intersected by the main watershed of England: Most Dales drain to the North Sea, some of the Irish Sea.

The landscape of the Dales is characterized by separated by dry-stone walls sheep and cattle pastures. They provide nutritious grass and are located mainly in the valleys, while the moorland designated vegetation form predominates in the higher elevations: barren, overgrown by fern, hard grasses and heather land, such as red grouse find habitat in which numerous wildlife.


Finds in numerous caves indicate prehistoric settlement in the area of the Yorkshire Dales. Also, agriculture was already operating in the Bronze Age. The Romans used some lead mines, and laid level paths through the Pennines to.

In the 17th and 18th centuries, the region experienced a brief upswing by Bleierzgewinnung in Swaledale, Arkengarthdale and Pately Bridge. Then there was a textile boom. Many huts facing an own looms, and the whole family was involved in the production of textiles. As modern industrial plants suppressed the traditional mode of production, migrated many families, so that today in the whole area, only about 18,000 people live.


The Yorkshire Dales are several long-distance paths crossed: Pennine Way, Coast to Coast Walk, Dales Way and Pennine Bridleway. Numerous local hiking and biking trails are available for short things available. The Three Peaks Walk is a particular challenge for hikers dar.

In 1954 was established on an area of 1,765 km ², the Yorkshire Dales National Park. The largest part of this national park is located in North Yorkshire. Living in the area of ​​the park and work 20,000 people.

The number of visitors per year is more than eight million.


In the Yorkshire Dales, the stories of the veterinarian and author James Herriot are located, which also served as a template for the BBC TV series All Creatures Great and Small.

The American travel writer Bill Bryson lived for a time in the Yorkshire Dales and described it in his book Notes from a Small Iceland.

The TV series Shaun the Sheep plays characteristically Yorkshire countryside.

List of Dales

East side, draining to the North Sea, from North to South

West side, the Irish Sea draining, from north to south


  • Aysgarth Falls
  • Bolton Castle
  • Clapham, Yorkshire
  • Cautley Spout waterfall
  • Gaping Gill
  • Grassington
  • Hardraw Force
  • Hawes
  • Horton in Ribblesdale
  • Kisdon Force Waterfall in the Swaledale
  • Malham
  • Reeth
  • Sedbergh
  • Settle
  • Yorkshire Three Peaks