20 October 2020

Yorkshire Dales Waterfalls - Aysgill, Cotter and Aysgarth

Starting at the bridge in the hamlet of Gayle just outside of Hawes, take the footpath behind the cottages until you reach a field. From here, you go through the gate and follow the track through the fields that will bring you to a set of steps that take you straight down the path to Aysgill waterfall. There’s only really one footpath so you shouldn’t be able to go wrong.

Cotter Force is a small waterfall on Cotterdale Beck, a minor tributary of the River Ure. Cotter is about a 2 ½ mile walk from the centre of Hawes but if you drive to the waterfall, there is roadside parking there. The footpath to the waterfall has been updated so that it is accessible for both wheelchairs and pushchairs. It’s not long into the walk before you can see the waterfall come into view. 

When we visited the other week it was a Saturday but we didn’t pass a single other person; I was surprised it was so quiet because the waterfall is really spectacular! There is a bench at the end of the walk where you can sit and admire the view, or you can climb further out along the rocks to get a closer look.

The sixth (!) and final waterfall of our trip was a quick stop off at Aysgarth. (I’ve written a post about visiting Aysgarth Falls from a few years back if you’d like to read it here).


13 October 2020


Hawes is a market town in North Yorkshire and is at the heart of Wensleydale in the Yorkshire Dales. Market day is on a Tuesday and dates back to 1307. We spent the second night of our trip in Hawes.

Just a short walk up the road from Hawes is the little hamlet of Gayle where there is a water powered mill, Gayle Mill, built in 1784. Unfortunately, the mill was closed when we visited but it’s a lovely place to wander round and the start of a walk to Aysgill Force which will be in the next post.

Hawes is a major producer of Wensleydale cheese and home of the Wensleydale Creamery. The admission cost into the factory was reduced because, due to Covid, there weren’t any cheese making demonstrations or tasting allowed to take place. Instead, we watched a video that showed how Wensleydale is made in a relatively simple process and got to look inside the factory. There is a cafĂ© and restaurant on site and so we stopped here for a tea and scone and made sure to buy some Wensleydale cheese to take home. The weather had come out lovely and so we were able to sit outside surrounded by the views of the Dales.


6 October 2020

Stainforth Force

Stainforth Force was another waterfall on the River Ribble that we found during our trip to the Yorkshire Dales. We parked in the village of Stainforth near Settle, and followed the signposts leading to the water which is only about a 5-minute walk away. 

During October and November, salmon can be seen leaping up the falls but unfortunately we were slightly too early to see this. I did manage to capture a yellow wagtail though.

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