Events & Activities
We at Bivouac want you to get the most out of your stay. Situated on the edge of the Yorkshire Dales there is an abundance of places to explore and an array of activities for you to get stuck in to.
Festive Woodland Trail at Bivouac
Christmas has come to Bivouac! Come and join in the Festive Twelve Days of Christmas trail in the woodland at Bivouac.
Due to its success last year we are bringing back our Twelve Days of Christmas Festive Trail. It will be open in the Bivouac woodland for you to come and join in the fun, making sure you bring your wellies! Open every day from Saturday 13th December 2014 until 4th January 2015. Our cosy cafe is open so that you can get a lovely hot chocolate to warm yourselves up afterwards. If you would like to book a table please ring 01765 535033. Please note we are not open Christmas Day.
Father Christmas’ Grotto at Bivouac
Father Christmas’ Elves have made a reservation at Bivouac for him to revisit his Bivouac Grotto on Saturday 20th and Sunday 21st December 2014.
Father Christmas will be in his grotto just off the Cafe from 10am until 4pm on both days. Book your slot or just turn up. There is also the Twelve Days of Christmas Festive Trail in the Woodland so why not make a day of it. To see Santa, receive a gift and do the Festive Trail is £7.50 per child. We will be serving festive food in the cafe all day too. To book call 01765 535033.
New Year’s Eve Celebrations
We’re having a party to celebrate the New Year!
There will be food and live music from Alligator Gumbo. Tickets are £30 per person. Further details closer to the time.
Would you like to stay in our cosy Woodland Shacks or 12 bed Bunk Barn? Call us on 01765 535 020 for more information.
Photography with Birds of Prey
We offer a range of photography opportunities with birds of prey.
Aiming to get the birds in the most natural settings and demonstrating as much natural abilities as possible. Professional photographer, Jed Wee, (www.essence-of-light.com) will guide any photography days in order to ensure you get the best out of the time you spend with us providing hints and tips if desired, as well as answering any questions that you may have.
The day also includes lunch at the Bivouac including a half sandwich, soup, chips and a tea or coffee on the day. Suitable for both amateur and professional photographers. £40 per person, for a minimum of 10 people attending.
Take to two wheels and explore the Yorkshire countryside
With Team GB’s success at the 2012 London Olympics, cycling has never been more popular in England. With the recent 2014 Grand Départ for the Tour de France in Yorkshire, now is the perfect time to come cycling in the Dales and try out the route of the professionals. The Tour de France route ran through the Swinton Estate, on the first section between Hawes and Ripon. With 20,000 acres of farmland and moorland, the Swinton Estate provides a wonderful base for a cycling trip, whether for a day, weekend or a short break. It offers a variety of inclines and terrain, from steep moorland tracks to winding country lanes, all with incredible views across rolling countryside into the Dales.
Swinton Park is at the heart of the Swinton Estate, so an ideal base for both gentle afternoons of exploration or more testing cycling challenges. The route from Bivouac to Swinton Park and return is a modest 6 mile ride and you can stop for a reviving cup of tea at Swinton Park before you head back to the hills!
Other suggested routes are:
Tour de France 2014 Grand Départ stages. See full details here
Parkland routes in Swinton Park
Bivouac to Masham to Pateley Bridge to Masham return to Bivouac (approx. 36 miles)
Bivouac to Masham to Akebar to Masham to Bivouac (approx. 26 miles)
Falconry Taster Experience
This 30 minute experience is aimed at those who want to try their hand at falconry.
Guests get the chance to hold a bird of prey and also experience another being flown to their hand and learn more about the birds’ hunting and flying skills.
£25 per person, spectators are charged at £5 each.
Experience the amazing opportunity of flying Harris hawks around the beautiful countryside surrounding Bivouac and Druid Temple.
This is a unique experience lasting approximately an hour, involving a short instruction on safely handling your hawk, before taking it out under supervision into the woodland where the hawk will follow you through the trees and return regularly to your gloved fist in spectacular style.
£45 per person (one hawk, one guest), with £40 for each additional guest who wish to participate, spectators are charged at £5 each.
The cost of a Hawk Walk for two guests with two hawks is £100.00 per couple.
For public footpath routes within the Swinton Estate please see The OS Explorer 298 and OS Landranger 99 maps.
Walkers can also pick up on existing trails which run through the Estate which are:
• From The Bivouac you can pick up the 50 mile Ripon Rowel walk, which is a loop walk that runs along the River Ure between Ripon and Masham, and then heads up onto the Dales through the Estate and returns to Ripon. Near the Bivouac you can make a short detour and visit the Druid’s Temple.
• The 3 mile Masham Leaves walk, which is a gentle amble beside the Rivers Ure and Burn following a sculpture trail with works by Alan Ayres.
• The 38 mile Six Dales Trail, running from Otley (to the south) to Middleham (a few miles north of Masham). It crosses through the Estate on the Nidderdale to Colsterdale to Coverdale section.
• The 104 mile circular Abbeys Amble which links three abbeys – Fountains, Jervaulx and Bolton with three castles – Ripley, Bolton and Middleham. The section that passes through the Estate is the Mickley to Masham to Jervaulx route.
Just south of Masham, and over the boundary of the Estate is Hackfall Woods a beautiful woodland area beside the River Ure with extensive walking tracks.
Fly Fishing on Leighton Reservoir
Leighton Reservoir is a 105 acre, 90ft deep fly-only bank fished reservoir, stocked with rainbow trout from the nearby trout farm on the Swinton Estate. It is a few miles from Masham and a short drive/lovely walk from Bivouac.The reservoir is surrounded by the moorland Dales and enjoys fabulous views.
Facilities include a lodge, toilets, parking and disabled facilities. Leighton is included in the Trout Fisherman Magazine’s “Troutmaster’s Water” competition. 80 of the fish caught in 2011 were 10lb or over, with 11,865 caught in total at a rod average of 2.97.
The reservoir is open for fishing mid March – mid November. Day rates are £25 (4 fish limit), with concessions of £20 (senior citizens/disabled – 3 fish limit); £15 (evening & junior – 2 fish limit). 10 day pass tickets are available at £210 (full day) and £180 (concession). You can also save 5 tickets and get £5 off your next visit (not applicable to block tickets).
For more information please contact Andrew Goodacre on 01765 68920 or click here.
Riding & Trekking
The Swinton Estate offers pony trekking and lessons at the Trekking Centre adjacent to the Swinton Park hotel 2 miles from Bivouac.
The Masham Riding and Treking Centre is adjacent to Swinton Park Hotel. The centre provides trekking and basic riding lessons in an outdoor arena. There are 18 horses and ponies of which most are pure bred highlands, but they also have Welsh mountain ponies and a Shire horse, all of which have a friendly disposition. The riding centre deals with all levels of riding skill and all ages of rider.
Pony rides, lessons and treks are available for children (with or without lead reins) and adults. Prices vary depending on what you want to do so it’s best to contact the Masham Riding & Trekking Centre directly.
Tel: 01765 689636
Full details of your height, weight and experience are required. Please book this activity in advance, prior to your stay. We are happy to book this for you on your behalf, or if you would like to book direct or make further enquiries you can contact the stables on www.mashamridingcentre.com.
The Swinton Park Bird of Prey Centre opened an aviary in the hotel grounds in 2008. The aviary is the restored orangery and is a very short walk from the hotel, adjacent to the four acre walled garden and children’s play area.
The falconer is Sophie Abbott, who masterminded the launch of the Bird of Prey Centre, and lives within walking distance of the hotel (she grew up on the estate and her father is the Head Gamekeeper).
The aviary is now home for up to 12 birds at time, with owls, eagles, falcons and hawks in residence.
To book a falconry experience, or just learn a bit more please click here.