Around Birkett Fell

  • Rivers, moors, woodland and farms all compete
  • Dunsop Bridge is an idyllic spot
  • Interesting buildings throughout

I remember, in a previous life, arguing passionately for the inclusion of the Forest of Bowland in the portfolio of cottages which we ran. The area is beautiful, the village of Dunsop Bridge a particular high spot, and it is unspoilt. I completed the 7 mile walk round Birkett Fell and only met people as I passed the Inn at Whitewell; I think the image of the area is poor and it is often seen as a down market Dales although those in the know probably would like to keep it that way. All types of terrain are included in the walk around Birkett Fell. Starting off in the grounds of the stately home of Knowlmere  Manor the walk passes through woodland, farmland, stretches of moor and beside some beautiful stretches of riverside.

I particularly enjoyed the initial stretch through the grounds of Knowlmere Manor and then later past the well situated farm at Crimpton, through the trees and down to Whitewell with its nice pub and church. The views across towards the bulk of Fair Snape Hill reflect the contrasting nature of this walk. Due to the peace of the area the wildlife is excellent, particularly the bird life both on the river Hodder where I saw Oyster Catchers and higher up with buzzards and plenty of their smaller friends. Dunsop Bridge is a friendly little village, laying claim to be the central pivot of Britain, with lovely local walks along the river – accompanied by the ever expanding family of ducks that live here.

Recommend: Take the map, it is a great walk for developing map reading skills. No I didn’t get lost but it was close!

Download GPX file

Birkett Fell map

All maps are copyright of Where2Walk ©2018

OS Map: O/S 1.25,000. OL41 Forest of Bowland & Ribblesdale.Buy Map
Start Point: SD 660501. Dunsop Bridge has a good value car park. Aim for Thorneyholme Hall and turn left for a clockwise circuit.
Height to Climb: 179 ms (587 feet)
Terrain: Can be wet particularly after Higher Birkett farm. The path around this point is also quite difficult to follow, trust yourself and the map!
Eating & Drinking: There is a small tea shop in the village serving excellent ice cream. Alternatively the Inn at Whitewell has plenty of character and there was a small van selling tea at Burholme Bridge when I passed.
Similar Walks Nearby: Fair Snape Fell
Trough of Bowland from Dunsop Bridge
Fells above Slaidburn
Places to Stay:


Inn at Whitewell


  1. Mark Thomson says:

    Just walked this one and it is a lovely walk, and didn’t see hardly a soul apart from at Dunsop Bridge and Whitewell. The views around the area were stunning, helped by it being a cool autumnal day with plenty of sunshine.
    Just a couple of comments, the car park at Dunsop Bridge is quite expensive (Lake District / Dales prices) so get there early and there is parking on the road, and the open access between Higher Birkett and Marl hill has a sign which restricts dogs from the land due to ground nesting birds. We took our dog through but kept her on a short lead as she wasn’t going to disturb them anymore than we would. Oh and based on the amount of cars in the car park at Whitewell if you’re planning Sunday Lunch there book in advance!!

  2. Rita says:

    Lovely walk! Done it with our dog, although halfway we’ve encountered a moorland where dogs are not permitted. Obviously we were not turning back at this point so just kept her on a lead for this part of the walk.

    Rest of the walk mostly through pastures where cattle and sheep can be found.

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