Walk: Hurstwood

Hurstwood pic
Hurstwood pic

Hurstwood is tucked away in the hills close to Burnley on the edge of the South Pennines. This walk completes a circuit of “Lancashire’s Lake District” – not real lakes but reservoirs of which there are a surprising number.

Retrace your steps to the Baptist chapel and then follow the track below the conifer plantation at the dam end of Hurstwood Reservoir.

Now on the Burnley Way enter the woods and keep on the path that edges along them at first with a wall to the left and later in more open ground a fence to the right.

At the corner of the plantation turn right to drop to a broad track and on joining it turn left.

Follow this as it crosses a footbridge at the top of the reservoir and then turn left.

The track climbs up to the Gorple Road 700m further along.

When you reach it turn right. We have stated this before and no doubt will restate it in the future but in our view the Gorple Road in one of the finest moorland tracks in Britain.

For the next 1700 metres it gradually climbs up to its highest point.

Continue for another 1000 metres and then with reservoir number three, Widdop coming into sight take a footpath on the right.

Follow it as it crosses moorland in a southerly direction down to a shooting hut located about 1000 metres from the Gorple Road.

Turn right along the service road and walk up to Upper Gorple Reservoir.

As you reach it cross a concrete slab bridge on the right and then take the footpath heading straight ahead. At first this follows a parallel course to the reservoir before bearing right up to the ruins of an ancient farm and then reuniting you with the Gorple Road.

After the boundary fence continue for 200 metres before taking a faint path on the left. This crosses rough moorland on a gradual descent to Cant Clough Reservoir.

When you reach its eastern tip join a broad track that follows the shore to the dam end. Here turn right onto a service road taking you up over a brow to Hurstwood Reservoir.

As the track makes a wide sweep to the right before the reservoir go through a kissing gate on the left and cross a neck of woodland to reach a broad track.

Turn left and follow this back to the car park.