Walk Todmorden to Gorpley Clough

 Main features of this walk

This is a varied walk through fields, woods , river, low and high level paths. Lovely open views of Walsden and Bacup Moor. As well as a local nature reserve and protected geological site, Gorpley clough is described as a “hidden gem” in the South Pennines. The site is a fine sample of a Pennine Clough containing deciduous woodland with many species of flowers, mosses and ferns. The Boards at the car park contain information of the Rocks and Landscapes of the clough. . O


An 8k 5 mile walk. Low and high level paths


Low and high level paths . Can be muddy in the Clough. Some road walking


Some uneven paths, wooden bridges can be slippy after rain. A few stiles, stone steps, and crossing Bacup Road.


There is one bench to sit on on the high level path towards the end of the Clough. Ideal picnic spot.

What to take

Good sturdy waterproof footwear, a walking stick would be handy. Binoculars for bird spotting.

If you are catching the bus to the Clough catch the 465 Rawtenstall bus from Todmorden bus station. Ask for Gorpley Clough or the first Clough Foot stop on Bacup Road, opposite a terrace of white painted cottages.  Alight from the bus and walk back down the road for 100m to the Gorpley Clough car park.


  1. Follow the track and go over a railway footbridge. Keeping to the left head up the road, then go straight on to Stones Road ( the entrance to Dobroyd Castle is on the right). At the bend of the road, go through a stone gap in the wall, next to a yellow topped post. Head right up the steps to another yellow topped post. Watty Farm is in front of you.

  2. Turn right up the causey path between stone walls, until you reach 2 black and white posts and a Todmorden Centenary way link path. At the lane continue slightly uphill and at the first bend turn left over a wooden stile, (Todmorden Centenary way link path)

  3. Head down the fields, between rocks and a hillock, turn right and head for a large gap in the stone wall, go through and follow the narrow path through 2 fields heading towards the woods

  4. Go through the metal gate, over a small stream and carry on the path through the woods, then over a wooden stile, in front of you is Bacup Road. Cross the road carefully, turn right up the road until you get to a small car park on your left, which is the entrance to Gorpley Clough and Woods.

    [The noticeboards say “A hidden gem in the South Pennines”. West Yorkshire Geology Trust, www.wyorksgeologytrust.org]

  1. There are two ways of entering the Clough, but go through the gate on your left (rather than over the stile on your right) and follow the narrow path and wooden bridges along the river up the side of the Clough. You pass several attractive waterfalls. Follow the stone steps upwards at the end of the Clough where there is an Information board on the variety of birds to be seen.

  2. At the top of the Clough , with Gorpley Reservoir on your left, turn right, passing a green gate, to a wooden stile to the right. Follow the high level gravel path until you reach reach a bench , here you can rest and enjoy the wonderful views. This path becomes a rough track which you descend back to the car park.

    Here you can end the walk and catch the bus . On leaving the car park turn left for 100m along the road until you are opposite a terrace of white painted cottages. Cross the road carefully to the bus stop. Or retrace your steps by reversing the route back to Todmorden.

  1. Turn right at the car park, go down the road 80m, cross the road carefully and go through a gap in the wall, follow the footpath back through the woods. Cross the stream , go through the gate and head for the large gap in the stone wall straight ahead of you. Turn left ( Todmorden Centenary Way ) to a wide grassed path ,and continue uphill between the rocks and hillock until you reach the metal gate and wooden stile at the top of the field.

  2. Turn right on the lane then go between 2 black and white posts on the path between the stone walls. Follow the path downhill and a path until you reach the road. Turn left and continue down a road until you see a sign “No through road”. Go down this road , over the railway footbridge and down the track until you reach Rochdale Road.

  3. Turn left ( Morrisons is on the right) and walk back to Todmorden Town Centre.