FROM THE station turn right onto Park Road, and then right again as it bridges the dual carriageway.

After crossing the parallel Leeds-Liverpool Canal take a path left down onto its bank, and head away past the Damart factory to the Three Rise Locks.

Cross by a swing bridge at the top and resume on the towpath, quickly revealing the Five Rise Locks ahead. Ascend alongside the locks to the top, with its cafe and lock-keeper’s house.

The Five Rise Locks are a major landmark of the canal, where five interlinking locks have lifted boats up this watery staircase, a fascinating piece of engineering. This year marks the bicentenary of the completion of the canal.

Advance on the towpath past colourful boats to reach Micklethwaite Wharf. Cross Micklethwaite Lane and continue along the towpath above Crossflatts to a swing bridge on Morton Lane, where you abandon the canal, for now.

Cross the bridge and almost at once take a gap on the right, from where a path heads away to enter a few trees. Here take a right fork over a footbridge on Morton Beck, and resume upstream.

A stile into a field takes you outside the beck up to a stile onto a level path. Go left, rejoining the beck to soon reach a tree-fringed millpond.

Resuming, the mill-cut is bridged and the beck leads to a stile alongside a bridge on it.

Don't cross, instead turn right on the enclosed ascending way which merges into an access road to enter a corner of Micklethwaite.

Remain on this road as it winds left through housing. Turning right at the end it rises onto the road through this lovely village alongside a chapel opposite High Fold.

Go left a few strides to a steep, sloping green, and leave by the hairpin bend on the right. Here a level path heads away from a gate/stile to another gate/stile across the field. Through this a drive is joined to lead on above Fair Lady Farm to a stile at the end.

A good path heads away, soon becoming enclosed by walls to run a delightful, largely level course with views right to the Druid's Altar across the valley.

At the end your path emerges onto steeply climbing Greenhill Lane. Turn left up to a junction with Lady Lane at the top.

On the very junction take a gate on the right, and a firm path winds down through a sliver of woodland.

This course is maintained for some time, remarkably so amid much encroaching suburbia. Ultimately it drops onto a street.

Cross to Pinedale and descend to find a corner snicket to the left sending you off again. Through further greenery this drops to an access road: look right to see the late 16th century Gawthorpe Hall.

From a stile opposite descend to a kissing-gate onto a driveway leading down onto a road. Turn right above allotments, and at the end go left down Beck Lane to return to the Five Rose Locks.

Across the bridge rejoin the towpath to retrace your opening steps.

* This walk is found in Paul’s book Short Scenic Walks – Aire Valley (£3.99 -