A short and sweet waterfall walk from the heart of Ambleside. Stockghyll Force is marked on the map but can be a little tricky to find unless you know the secret. It's easy enough to find the beck: it's next door to Cunningham's outdoor shop, but the falls are up stream and it isn't entirely obvious how to get there. A friendly local might point you in the right direction or you can use this short guide.
Stock Ghyll is a tributary of the River Rothay, draining eventually into Windermere, it has a heavily industrialised past and used to be nicknamed Rattle Ghyll. Many of the old mill buildings whose wheels it used to turn can still be seen in Ambleside. Some are used as shops. They used to produce bobbins for silk and cotton thread, to process wool so it was warm and tough, as well as grinding corn.
Parking in Ambleside is reasonably plentiful although it does get busy at holiday times. There is the main car park above the town centre on the A591 towards Rydal. And for longer stays the Miller Field car park at the bottom end of town is large and often has space when the other has filled up. There are a couple of smaller car parks dotted around too.
The walk starts outside the Tourist Information centre at the top of the town centre outside which you will find a stone pillar on a three stepped octagonal base with 1651 carved into the top of it. Head south east following the one way system and as the road swings around to the right continue forward down a narrow lane signposted "toilets".
As you reach the toilets a sign on the wall in front of you declares "To the Waterfalls", pointing left, and a sign on the wall to your left says "Stockghyll" and "Wansfell Pike". Bear left to follow the lane up the hill and then round to the right. Stockghyll is now on your left.
In 500m (550 yards) bear left for the entrance to Stockghyll Woods.
Follow the rough path through the woods. Bear right, keeping the beck on your left, and follow the red arrow marker posts. There are a few precarious viewing places protected by fencing.
Nearing the top, bear left to and cross the footbridge over the beck.
Turn left. There is no other option here as all the land around the falls is private property.
A slightly rougher and wetter path now drops down, the falls over to your left still. A short little detour to the left allows you to get a closer look at the upper falls.
Return to the path and bear left to continue descending.
Drop down to the lower footbridge and cross. Bear right and climb up to the outward path. Bear right again and continue back to the gateway and road. Bear right and walk back into the town.
If you like this walk then why not try one of our other nearby walks:
|High Sweden Bridge Circular||same start point|
|Red Screes and Middle Dodd from Ambleside||10m (11 yards) away|
|Wansfell, and Wansfell Pike||14m (15 yards) away|
|Loughrigg Tarn||22m (24 yards) away|
|Loughrigg Fell from Ambleside||22m (24 yards) away|
|Wansfell Pike, Troutbeck, and Skelghyll Wood||31m (34 yards) away|
|Lily Tarn above Ambleside||50m (55 yards) away|
|An Ambleside Waterfalls Wander - Stockghyll Force and Blue Hill Wood||63m (69 yards) away|
|The Fairfield Horseshoe||180m (198 yards) away|
|Loughrigg Fell from Rydal||1.9km (1.2 miles) away|
|Nab Scar and Alcock Tarn||2.0km (1.3 miles) away|
|Red Bank from White Moss near Ambleside||3.3km (2.0 miles) away|
|Loughrigg Fell from White Moss||3.4km (2.1 miles) away|
|Troutbeck Tongue||4.0km (2.5 miles) away|
|Sour Howes and Sallows||4.0km (2.5 miles) away|
|Red Screes from Kirkstone Pass||4.3km (2.7 miles) away|
|Grasmere and Rydal Water||4.8km (3.0 miles) away|
|Helm Crag||4.9km (3.0 miles) away|
|A circuit of Grasmere||4.9km (3.0 miles) away|
|Stone Arthur, Great Rigg, Heron Pike and Nab Scar||4.9km (3.0 miles) away|
|Alcock Tarn||4.9km (3.0 miles) away|
|An Elterwater Stroll||4.9km (3.0 miles) away|
|Waterfalls and the Cathedral Cavern, from Elterwater||4.9km (3.1 miles) away|
|Steel Fell, Calf Crag, Gibson Knott and Helm Crag||4.9km (3.1 miles) away|
Unless otherwise stated the text in this walk is the copyright of Hug Solutions Ltd trading as The Hug and the photographs are the copyright of Elizabeth Oldham. Hill data is derived from Database of British and Irish hills which is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported License. Maps contains Ordnance Survey data © Crown copyright and database right 2011 and paths © OpenStreetMap Contributors,CC-BY-SA, 2011