Drover’s roads were used for herding livestock to market or new grazing. This route was travelled between Scotland and England.
The walk starts at Salter’s Gate. Looking north the remains of Quickburn Quarry lie on the right hand side. This was a sandstone quarry and was closed during the 1980s.
Walk north-west onto Saltersgate Lane then turn right into the lane heading north towards Saltersgate Plantation.
This lane is part of the old drove route. On the right is the site of a Shake Hole (where the ground has caved in over a subterranean cavern).
Burnhill on the left was an ammunition depot during the Second World War and is also the site of a derelict railway station which was on the old Crook to Consett line.
Continue north to the junction with Waskerley Way and turn left towards Round Hill then, leaving the Waskerley Way, take footpath opposite Red House. Rejoining the Waskerley Way, cross and continue south-west with High Allotment on left hand side.
Nanny Mayer’s Incline can be seen to the north-west. It was named after a landlady whose farm was crossed by the railway. The ‘self-acting’ incline is three-quarters of a mile in length at a gradient of one in fourteen. The carriages travelling down were attached to a cable which pulled those on the opposite rail up. There are also views to Waskerley, a railway village built in 1834 for the Stanhope – Tyne railway. Many of the buildings were demolished when the railway was decommissioned.
Waskerley Park was part of a deer park in the fifteenth century and belonged to the Bishops of Durham. A stone wall and a large ditch, to keep the deer in, once surrounded it.
Turn sharp left towards Drypry Hill. Drypry was the site of a lead ore vein but the buildings have now been reduced to a heap of stones. From this part of the route there are views south to Tunstall Reservoir which was completed in 1879 for Weardale and
Shildon District Waterworks.
Significant remains from medieval iron working were found near the man-made lake. This is also an area of ancient woodland and was likely to have been part of coppice woods in the Bishop of Durham’s Park. Coppicing supplied wood for lead and iron smelting.
Continue along footpath and turn left towards Salter’s Gate. At footpath crossroad turn left towards Salter’s Gate.
- Distance: 5-10 Miles
- Grade: Moderate
- Route Surface: Off Road
- Route Surface: On Road
- Theme: Breathtaking Views
- Theme: Heritage
- In countryside
- Walk Distance - 7.5 miles