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Duddon Valley

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Duddon Valley
Author: Andrew's Walks, Published: 02 Aug 2018 Walk Rating:star0 Duddon Valley - Lake District Walking Guidestar0 Duddon Valley - Lake District Walking Guidestar0 Duddon Valley - Lake District Walking Guidestar0 Duddon Valley - Lake District Walking Guidestar0 Duddon Valley - Lake District Walking Guide
Cumbria, Broughton-in-Furness
Walk Type: Hills, valleys and dales
Duddon Valley
Length: 7 miles,  Difficulty: boot Duddon Valley - Lake District Walking Guide boot Duddon Valley - Lake District Walking Guide boot Duddon Valley - Lake District Walking Guide boot Duddon Valley - Lake District Walking Guide
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0017_cloudy_with_light_rain Duddon Valley - Lake District Walking GuideToday's weather
17 °C, Light drizzle, Wind: 4 mph NW
Next few days: Hover over icon for more info.
0009_light_rain_showers Duddon Valley - Lake District Walking Guide 0004_black_low_cloud Duddon Valley - Lake District Walking Guide 0002_sunny_intervals Duddon Valley - Lake District Walking Guide 0009_light_rain_showers Duddon Valley - Lake District Walking Guide 0002_sunny_intervals Duddon Valley - Lake District Walking Guide

A 6.5 mile circular walk around the Duddon Valley (also known as Dunnerdale) within the Southern Lake District in Cumbria. The valley was one of Wordsworth’s favourite places in the Lake District and he dedicated a series of 35 sonnets to the river. The walk begins by crossing the stunning River Duddon with its crystal clear rockpools, before climbing up the valley side and heading through Dunnerdale Forest. After descending back to the valley floor to visit the pretty village of Seathwaite, the return leg follows paths through farmland, meadows and the lower fells.

The walk includes several climbs and descents throughout, with a total ascent of around 300 metres. The paths are a mixture of stone tracks, woodland paths, field paths and rocky fell paths, plus about a mile along a quiet lane. You will need to negotiate several gates and a couple of footbridges. You will be sharing some of the paths with sheep, so take care with dogs. Allow 3.5 hours.

The walk starts and finishes at the free Forestry Commission car park called Birks Bridge, by Hinning House Close, between the two villages of Seathwaite and Cockley Beck. The whole area is only accessible via several single-track roads, so allow extra time for your journey. From Cockley Beck, take the road heading south signed to Broughton via Duddon Valley. After about 1.7 miles, you will come to the car park on your right (at a left-hand bend in the road). The nearest post code of LA20 6EG, will take you to Hinning House itself which is located on the same road. From this point, simply continue south for about half a mile to reach the car park.

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Walk Sections

Start to Birks Bridge
Start to Birks Bridge

Start point: 54.3856 lat, -3.1794 long
End point: 54.3838 lat, -3.1807 long

From the Forestry Commission car park at the start of the walk, you will have lovely views along the River Duddon. Leave the car park via the vehicle entrance and turn right along the road, taking care of any traffic. After about 150 metres you will come to the stone river footbridge, called Birks Bridge, on your right. As you cross this bridge take a moment to look over the side into the river. The river under the bridge is known for its deep clear rock pools.

Birks Bridge to The Birks
Birks Bridge to The Birks

Start point: 54.3838 lat, -3.1807 long
End point: 54.3819 lat, -3.186 long

Cross the bridge and bear right to follow the footpath which winds uphill to reach a beautiful large stone building called The Birks. A working farmhouse until the 1960s, The Birks is now a school field and study centre, that is also available for private hire for groups.

The Birks to Grassguards
The Birks to Grassguards

Start point: 54.3819 lat, -3.186 long
End point: 54.3725 lat, -3.1961 long

Pass alongside The Birks and join the stone track leading you through the wooden gate. At the track junction, turn left. Follow the stone track leading you through Dunnerdale Forest. After about 800 metres (just after a right-hand bend in the track), turn left to follow the footpath heading south west. The path leads you to the next stone farmhouse, Grassguards.

Grassguards to High Wallowbarrow
Grassguards to High Wallowbarrow

Start point: 54.3725 lat, -3.1961 long
End point: 54.3567 lat, -3.2005 long

Pass through the buildings and go straight ahead onto a bridleway track. The track leads you through a gate and continues ahead, passing a pretty ruined barn on your left. There are some impressive and substantial dry stone walls on this stretch. Stay with the bridleway track as it contours around the lower slopes of Ulpha Fell, passing through Rowntree How and passing the rocky Wallowbarrow Crag on your left. At the bottom, you will reach the next stone buildings, High Wallowbarrow.

High Wallowbarrow to River Crossing
High Wallowbarrow to River Crossing

Start point: 54.3567 lat, -3.2005 long
End point: 54.3569 lat, -3.1952 long

At this point, leave the bridleway and turn left to join a footpath. The paths leads you across fields and then into a short woodland section to arrive at a stone footbridge over the River Duddon. The bridge has a plaque explaining it was built by W. Grisenthwaite for A.F & R.A.F. 1934.

River Crossing to Seathwaite Holy Trinity Church
River Crossing to Seathwaite Holy Trinity Church

Start point: 54.3569 lat, -3.1952 long
End point: 54.3547 lat, -3.1878 long

Cross the footbridge and, at the far side, take the footpath ahead which leads you through a cooling woodland section, before swinging right to cross Tarn Beck, and turning left to emerge out to the road in Seathwaite, opposite Holy Trinity Church. The church has a tribute to 'Wonderful Walker', who was curate here for 66 years as well as being a farm labourer, teacher and doctor.

Seathwaite Holy Trinity Church to Long House
Seathwaite Holy Trinity Church to Long House

Start point: 54.3547 lat, -3.1878 long
End point: 54.3624 lat, -3.1739 long

Turn left along the road (passing the church on your right) for about 400 metres, then turn right onto the footpath and entrance drive for Turner Hall Farm. Follow the footpath which passes to the left of the farm buildings and then winds its way through several sheep pastures, emerging to a junction with an access lane (Walna Scar Road). After crossing the lane, there is a choice of two footpaths. Take the right-hand one, an access drive which leads to Long House.

Long House to Tongue House
Long House to Tongue House

Start point: 54.3624 lat, -3.1739 long
End point: 54.3666 lat, -3.1764 long

At Long House you will again have a choice of two paths. Take the left-hand option, leading you between stone walls and then continuing ahead across pastures to reach Tongue House.

Tongue House to Roadside
Tongue House to Roadside

Start point: 54.3666 lat, -3.1764 long
End point: 54.3748 lat, -3.1804 long

At Tongue House, turn left at the path junction onto a side branch of footpath which crosses Tarn Beck and leads you across a field and into a woodland belt. Go straight ahead to join a rocky path leading you across the lower slopes of the fells and descending to reach the valley road.

Roadside to End
Roadside to End

Start point: 54.3748 lat, -3.1804 long
End point: 54.3857 lat, -3.1797 long

Turn right to follow the road, passing alongside a cattle grid. Follow the road for about a mile, eventually passing Birks Bridge and continuing to reach the car park where the walk began.

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Text and images for this walk are Copyright © 2018 by the author AndrewLocking and may not be reproduced without permission.


The information in this guide has been provided in good faith and is intended only as a guide, not a statement of fact. You are advised to check the accuracy of the information provided and should not use this guide for navigational directions nor should you rely on the accuracy of the weather forecast. You are advised to take appropriate clothing, footwear, equipment and navigational materials with you according to the current and possible weather and nature of the terrain. Always follow the country code and follow any additional warnings or instructions that may be available. Some walks may be very strenuous and you are advised to seek medical advice if you have any doubts as to your capability to complete the walk.

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6 gallery images for "Duddon Valley"

11284_0AndrewWalks1533219811 Duddon Valley - Lake District Walking Guide Image by: Andrew's Walks
Uploaded: 02 Aug 2018
Looking back to the far side of the Duddon Valley after passing through Birks
11284_1AndrewWalks1533219811 Duddon Valley - Lake District Walking Guide Image by: Andrew's Walks
Uploaded: 02 Aug 2018
The clear rock pools for which Birks Bridge is well known
11284_2AndrewWalks1533219811 Duddon Valley - Lake District Walking Guide Image by: Andrew's Walks
Uploaded: 02 Aug 2018
A welcome opportunity for Bonnie to cool down at the end of the walk
11284_3AndrewWalks1533219811 Duddon Valley - Lake District Walking Guide Image by: Andrew's Walks
Uploaded: 02 Aug 2018
The River Duddon from the car park...
11284_0AndrewWalks1533219887 Duddon Valley - Lake District Walking Guide Image by: Andrew's Walks
Uploaded: 02 Aug 2018
Passing Wallowbarrow Crag
11284_1AndrewWalks1533219887 Duddon Valley - Lake District Walking Guide Image by: Andrew's Walks
Uploaded: 02 Aug 2018
Holy Trinity Church

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