Harrop Tarn from Dobgill Bridge

 

Difficulty : EasyDuration : 2 HrsDistance : 4 Km

 
This walk is a fairly easy stroll ideal for those rainy days or days when you haven't got the time or will to climb a high fell. Although an easy walk there is plenty of interest along the walk as it starts from the shores of the picturesque Thirlmere reservoir and makes its way up through crags and woodland following the dramatic waterfalls of Dob Gill before reaching the beautiful Harrop Tarn surrounded by huge rough crags. The wildlife around Harrop Tarn includes Buzzards soaring in circles above the surrounding crags and as you'll see from the pictures Herons nest in the surrounding forests and often can be seen sat on the other side of the lake. An ideal short an easy walk with a bit of a climb uphill an an option to explore the forest tracks to make for a longer walk.


Full route description for this walk

 

The walk starts from the Dobgill Bridge car park situated just a kilometre up the road from Wythburn on the small road that follows the western side of Thirlmere Reservoir. Parking here is free although can sometimes be difficult at busy times, there are also toilet facilities on the car park. There is an information board at the car park worth looking at for the history of the area and a map to Harrop Tarn and the surrounding forest tracks.

Buzzard above Tarn Crags

Buzzard above Tarn Crags

Grey Heron by Harrop Tarn

Grey Heron by Harrop Tarn

Thirlmere Reservoir is a huge and well landscaped reservoir, the owners United Utilities have done a great job of keeping extensive woodlands around the reservoir that provides millions of gallons of water via a ridiculously long network of aqueduct pipes to the North West of England and all the way to Manchester. Even before the man made dam was completed in 1894 by the Manchester Corporation company, there was a natural lake in this valley, the dam was simply built to higher the water level and create a constant level to supply the ever expanding industrial city of Manchester. The other side of the reservoir is made up by the Helvellyn range which provides a fantastic backdrop across the valley when taking a rest on parts of this walk.

Fantastic Woodland

Fantastic Woodland

Dob Gill Waterfalls

Dob Gill Waterfalls

From the car park follow the path that heads uphill towards Harrop Tarn through some fantastic old woodland. After about two hundred metres you should reach a wall and behind it a huge imposing crag. At this point the path heads off to the right to go round the crag, at this point you can go round the crag that way following the easy and obvious path up to Harrop Tarn, however you'd then miss out on the dramatic cascading waters of Dob Gill. The best way from here is to go left behind the wall and head for the noise of the waterfalls.

View over Thirlmere

View over Thirlmere

Path round Harrop Tarn

Path round Harrop Tarn

The waterfalls are an impressive sight, it seems daft that a path was never made to skirt the side of these impressive falls. Once at the falls you can go down to them, taking care not to slip on the tree routes and stones. They do make a fantastic picture in the morning when the sun bounces of the white waters. From the falls simply follow the steep ground up the right hand side of Dob Gill through the trees, the going here is not hard as the ground is soft, but it is quite steep in places. You will have rounded the left side of that imposing crag and eventually meet up with the original path.

Harrop Tarn from Footbridge

Harrop Tarn from Footbridge

Harrop Tarn from Ullscarf Gill

Harrop Tarn from Ullscarf Gill

Follow the obvious path now as it follows the line of Dob Gill heading towards Harrop Tarn. At the tarn the first thing you will see is a wooden footbridge crossing Dob Gill. Stand on this footbridge and take in the awe inspiring beauty if Harrop Tarn. The far side of the tarn is slightly wilder than the near side as there is no continuous path, however if you wish to go round and explore then you can follow the path over the wooden footbridge and round to the top side of the tarn, here the Ullscarf Gill halts any further progress but I still think its worth exploring to see the tarn from a different angle and to see it with the Helvellyn Ridge as a backdrop.

Forestry Trees

Forestry Trees

Forestry Track Descent

Forestry Track Descent

Back at the footbridge to continue the walk now head off the other way to the right following the path that heads towards the northern end of the lake. This path turns into a forestry track and then slightly uphill before turning right and heading back downhill through the impressive forests. After a steep descent on the track you will come to the edge of the forest at Cragsteads Gill where the views open up over Thirlmere. At this point a path heads off to the right skirting a wall on the edge of the forest, follow this path all the way downhill now passing a few abandoned building ruins on the way down. Once at the bottom you will be back on the small road that again that skirts the edge of the reservoir, turn right on to this road heading south and follow it for just a few hundred metres back to the car park.

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Photos taken on this walk

 

These photo's are taken from a trek with Nicky on October 27th 2006.
Footpath From Dobgill Bridge Dob Gill Waterfalls Dob Gill Waterfalls Myself At Dob Gills Waterfalls High Crag And Dollywaggon Pike From Dob Gill Pine Trees In Dob Gill Forestry Plantation Pine Tree In Dob Gill Forestry Plantation Footbridge At Harrop Tarn Nicky In Fallen Tree Roots Harrop Tarn And Tarn Crags Behind Harrop Tarn Outflow Harrop Tarn And Tarn Crags Behind Buzzard Flying Above Harrop Tarn Nethermost Pike From Harrop Tarn View From The Farside Of Harrop Tarn View To Seat Sandal Harrop Tarn Grey Heron Beside Harrop Tarn Grey Heron In Tree By Harrop Tarn Grey Heron In Tree By Harrop Tarn Felled Logs In Forestry Plantation Autumn Colours In View North From Dobgill Helvellyn Stream Across Thirlmere Seen Through Dobgill Forest Trees Track Leading Back To Dobgill Bridge Car Park Autumn Views Across Thirlmere




Videos taken on this walk

 

This video was compiled from a trek with Nicky on October 27th 2006.




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