On a wet or windy day a walk in Gisburn Forest makes a good choice. There are marked trails and less well marked paths! Choose your own and enjoy the solitude and quiet only a forest can bring.
I have never been particularly attracted by forestry walking. The open spaces, long distance views and feeling of freedom have always been the attraction for me outdoors. The enclosed, almost claustrophobic nature of woodland, and in particular coniferous woodland less so. The long stretches of forestry which I encountered on the Southern Upland Way a few years ago did little to alter this impression. I headed for a walk in Gisburn Forest with some trepidation.
I chose the two mile ‘blue marker’ route and enjoyed it. It was different. The Forestry Commission have made an effort to improve access and understanding of forestry and the paths are excellent, both for walkers and more particularly cyclists. They have also planted some deciduous trees to break up the monotony of the dark coniferous forestry and the walk is no where near as bleak as much of the land which covers southern Scotland. I am therefore more than happy to include this walk because it provides a very different perspective on the area. Similar to Grizedale Forest in the Lake District, it provides the walker with a much rounder experience of the walks in the area.
One major advantage of walking in the woods or forest is that it makes little difference if the rain is falling or the wind is blowing. Leave Gisburn Forest for a bad weather day.
Take time to explore up the minor paths which seem to be heading nowhere. Becoming lost is not a problem with so many paths. However the feeling of being a bit unsure is quite exhilarating.
BEWARE. This is a huge forest. The route map bore little resemblance to the actual walk. We attempted the Orange walk but sadly at a critical junction there was no guide post. This added 90 mins to our walk and had we not met 2 bikers we would have been really lost. On the plus side the view from the top of the hill was amazing. Couldn’t find road to thee Hub but found a real gem..The Old Vicarage a super cafe bistro in next village.
I absolutely agree with above comments.We started from car park by stocks reservoir ,followed what was supposed to be green walking trail 2.5 miles 3 .25 hours later we arrived back to car where we d left an immobile old lady.Green posts disappeared somewhere at the top and we were wondering round totally lost.
Absolute wasted journey. Arrived at ‘The Hub’???? Looked at map. Couldn’t find any paths to walk on without going back on main road in. What about children? Dangerous?Decided to get back in car after paying £3 and drive down to reservoir and find orange route. Found a leaflet and all paths and rights of way had changed colour???? What’s going on? We drove from Manchester which is a long way for a nice forest walk! Rubbish! No dog bins, no ordinary bins and the toilets were disgusting. Get your act together, it is not all about Bikes! I saw women turning up with prams. Where do they go? The cafe? Where do disabled people go? This could be so nice. Please re plan this site for everyone sake.
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