Dovestone Reservoir Circular Walk
- Physical DifficultyThis is the average user-submitted rating on the physical difficulty of this route. In general, green is beginner, blue is intermediate, black is advanced/most difficult and double-black is expert-only. It is recommended that users build up to black and double-black routes.
- Technical DifficultyThis is the average user-submitted rating on the technical difficulty of this route. In general, green is beginner, blue is intermediate, black is advanced/most difficult and double-black is expert-only. It is recommended that users build up to black and double-black routes.
The Dovestone Reservoir Circular Walk is a 13.5 km walking circuit that will take you around Saddleworth Moor to provide scenic views of the surrounding area. Along the trail, you will pass by a number of unique highlights including a cascading waterfall, the Trinnacle rock formation, and the Dovestone Memorial Forest before arriving back at the trailhead. The amazing scenery and well-maintained trails make this route a must-walk if you are looking to explore the western portion of the Peak District.
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Route Description for Dovestone Reservoir Circular Walk
The Dovestone Reservoir Circular Walk is part of a strong network of trails on the western edge of the Peak District, offering access to a number of different outdoor activities such as hiking, sailing, and rock climbing; however, due to the region’s popularity, it can also be extremely busy. In order to secure parking at the trailhead and avoid mass crowds along the trail, it is best to arrive early or on off-peak days. Additionally, this walking route does feature a small amount of elevation gain as you make your way uphill along the moor, but with the exception of some light scrambling, these gains should be manageable for walkers of most fitness levels.
This trail is the perfect option for a fun day outdoors if you want to take in some spectacular scenery and get some good exercise in the process. With stunning views that sweep across the rolling hills of the surrounding landscape and the chance to walk past four scenic reservoirs, as well as the iconic Trinnacle; there is no reason why the Dovestone Reservoir Circular Walk shouldn’t be your next big adventure in the Peak District.
Setting out from the trailhead near the southwest corner of the Dovestone Reservoir, make your way north along the edge of the water for 0.5 km, where you will arrive at a bridge next to the reservoir overflow. Make your way over the water and pick the trail back up on the other side, following along as it turns to the east and traverses a stretch of trail along the north edge of the reservoir. Enjoy the scenic views across the water with the moor in the backdrop, as you continue for 1.0 km to arrive at a junction.
Take the path to the right, followed by the next left to work your way around the edge of the Yeoman Hey and Greenfield reservoirs. After 2.6 km, you will pass by the rocky cliffs of Raven Stones Brow on your right and come to another junction in the trail next to the flowing waters of Holme Clough. Here, you can rest for a short while and take in the scenic views of a small, cascading waterfall along the stream before continuing on with your walk. Take the path to the right to begin your climb uphill towards the unique three-pillar rock formation known as The Trinnacle.
After making your way uphill to the gritstone pillars and enjoying the sweeping views of the surrounding landscape, continue your walk along the ridge for 5.6 km as you enjoy a sightline over the Peak District to the southeast and the city to the west. As you walk this lengthy stretch of trail, you will pass by a field of large weathered rocks known as the Charnel Stones on your right, and have some nice views down to the reservoir below.
Reaching a junction at the edge of the Chew Reservoir, take the path to the right to descend the moor along the Chew Brook, following it for 2.6 km and passing through one gate to eventually arrive at another junction. Keep left along a course that will take you through a lovely bit of forest, with the Chew Plantation on your left and the Memorial Forest on your right. After making your way through the trees, continue along the road for another 0.3 km to pass by the Dovestone Sailing Club and arrive back at the trailhead where you began your walk. If you need a bit of nourishment after your journey, pop into a pub in nearby Greenfield for a quick pint to celebrate completing the Dovestone Reservoir Circular Walk.
Located on the western edge of the Peak District where the Greenfield and Chew Brooks valleys converge, the Dovestone Reservoir is a scenic body of water that supplies drinking water to the surrounding area and offers access to a number of outdoor activities including walking, climbing, and sailing.
The Trinnacle is a unique rock formation at the Raven Stones Brow that overlooks Dovestone Reservoir and has been fractured away from the main section of cliffs through years of environmental weathering. A popular destination for rock climbers, the dramatic image of the three gritstone pillars standing high above the moor is one of the area’s most iconic sights.
Frequently Asked Questions
How much is parking?
The pay-and-display parking is available at the Dovestone Reservoir Trailhead for £4 per day.
Find other amazing walks in Peak District National Park:
Insider Hints for Dovestone Reservoir Circular Walk
- Parking at the trailhead is pay-and-display (£4/day).
- Trail can be packed during peak hours. Arrive early or mid-week to avoid crowds.
- Toilets can be found on-site next to the car park.
Getting to the Dovestone Reservoir Circular Walk Trailhead
To reach the car park for the Dovestone Reservoir Circular Walk from St. Mary’s Primary in Greenfield, drive southeast along Chew Valley Road for 122 m, and take the first exit at the roundabout onto Holmfirth Road. After 0.6 km, make a slight right onto Bank Lane and follow it for 1.0 km to arrive at the parking area.
Dovestone Reservoir Circular Walk Elevation Graph
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