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Have you spotted Dalby Forest on the latest series of the Channel 5 programme 'Secret Life of the Forest'? This documentary series showcases the beautiful Great Yorkshire Forest that is just a stone throw away from High Oaks Grange. 

Dalby Forest is in the heart of the North York Moors and it is a fantastic place to visit with over 8,000 acres of forest and moorlands to explore. It offers some of the best walking and cycling trails in Yorkshire which range from a short walk perfect for families, to the more advanced cycling routes. Some walking trails take in the forest views, others like Bridestones are a bit more steep in places where you can get up close to the towering sandstone sculptures. There is a walk to suit every person and every mood. 

Recently, we decided that we wanted a quiet walk, where Bailey the dog could run and explore with little chance of bumping into anyone else so we chose the short Pexton Moor trail. This circular route is 1.6 miles and we managed it within 45 minutes at a child and dog friendly pace. 

You'll find the starting point on the right after the entrance to Dalby Forest. Look out for the signpost for the Haygate car park which is the starting point.



Once you have parked the car, head left towards the gate and follow the blue arrows. Just before the gate you will find the one and only bin on the route. The track is a combination of stone, earth and forest floor so suitable footwear is advised. This first part of the trail is open and you can take in fabulous views of Dalby Dale. There is a picnic table at one viewpoint so the perfect place to enjoy a quick stop whilst enjoying the open views.



The trail then takes you through the forest. This is the perfect place to explore and perhaps even some den building with the children.



The trail then becomes open again and this is a good point to pop your dog on the lead if they are off lead as it comes out at the road of the entrance gate. Carefully cross the road (you'll spy the blue arrows) and continue the trail with views across fields on your left. Take the right when you come to the crossroad which takes you through forest paths. Eventually you'll come back to the road which leads to Haygate car park. Straight ahead you'll see a sculpture of the World War Two lumberjills by Ray Lonsdale. There is a great viewpoint across the forest here and a bench where you can sit and admire the beauty of Dalby Forest. It doesn't matter what season you visit Dalby Forest, it is always beautiful with plenty of wildlife to spot along the way.



You can download the Pexton Moor Trail and many other walking routes via pdf. at Dalby Forest.  If you are looking for a longer walk in the North York Moors then we would recommend Hole of Horcum


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