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Situated a few miles to the south west of Whitby the Pickering to Grosmont line covers about 18 miles through some spectacular scenery of the North Yorkshire Moors national park. "The line is owned by the North York Moors Historical Railway Trust who have run the line as a living museum since 1974" There are many different types of locomotive hauled passenger working both steam and diesel. With the occasional photographic freight charter or permanent way train.
Railway type and traffic
The trains are mostly steam hauled, with occasional diesel turns and failure stand ins. There are numerous events and galas.
For more details see the North Yorkshire Moors Railway
Esk Valley is a rural location with steep hills on either side - there are no problems with crime etc. and the locals are used to railway photographers. The weather can vary between extremes (and sometimes seasons!) in very short periods of time, so warm / waterproof clothing is advisable.
Esk Valley can be reached by road from near Grosmont - from the A171 Guisborough to Whitby road, take the signs to the NYMR and Grosmont through Egton. On the outskirts of Grosmont and before the river bridge, take a ford to the right, pass through Lease Rigg, and Esk Valley is down a road to the left in half a mile. Alternatively, Esk Valley can be reached from Grosmont via the 'Rail Trail' footpath.Click here to set up your location for directions to this location NYMR, Esk Valley map co-ordinates
Parking on the roadside along the road to and at Esk Valley. Grosmont has two car parks, run by the NYMR and the National Park.
From the north, take the Middlesbrough - Whitby 'Esk Valley Line' service to Grosmont, then the 'Rail Trail' footpath.
From the south, Pickering can be reached by buses from Malton / York, then take the NYMR to Grosmont.Click here to set up your location for directions to this location
The nearest amenities are at Grosmont (pub, public toilets etc.)
Bed and Breakfasts / rented accommodation are readily available in Pickering (several advertise in the Classified Ads in the railway press).
Sun Compass using Suncalc by brought to you by Vladimir Agafonkin
It might be necessary to adjust the time to suit your visit, this link should open with the current day.
NYMR, Esk Valley
NYMR, Esk Valley general view map
NYMR, Esk Valley close up map
Windows Local Live Link
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NYMR, Esk Valley
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Although trains can be photographed in both directions with the side-on nature of the location, the position at the foot of the climb to Goathland means that the southbound trains to Pickering are the best bet (not only are the locos working hard but steam locos normally face southwards on the line). With the normal photo view looking eastwards, mid / late afternoon is the best time of day for taking shots.
The standard shots at this location are either half way up the hill on the road down to Esk Valley (as shown here), at the top of the hill (there are some telegraph wires in the scene which need to be carefully positioned), or down in the village itself (next to the near end of the row of white houses in this picture). With the southbound trains climbing hard and the lack of obstructions in the view, videographers are regularly found here.
The road along the row of cottages is private, the residents will complain if you walk down it, so respect their privacy and keep off.
General views - All photographs © Nick Wise unless otherwise stated
Fig 1 - Looking east
Fig 2 - Looking south east - Image © Albert Dawson
With the train leaving the view of the Green End location the train rolls down the bank towards Grosmont.
Fig 3 - Looking east - Image © Albert Dawson
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