Discovery Pass

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Explore Gisburn Forest & Stocks
(Average user rating: 4 unrated 3.9/5)

                        "A wilder place to relax"

Gisburn Forest is a fantastic place for cycling and walking, found in the heart of the beautiful Forest of Bowland.

Cloudspotting 2013 Gisburn Forest Cloudspotting

Join us at Gisburn for a 3 day Music, Art & Beer festival. Camping a must. Childrens activities for all ages. Fabulous food, ales & ciders from local micro breweries. 24/25/26 July

Local home baking and fresh coffee and hot chocolate on offer at the Cafe in the ForestForest Den Cafe

The cafe is currently closed as we are in the process of finding a new tenant. We apologise for any inconvenience this may cause and we hope to be opening again soon. 


Roam freeley on foot through the forest, follow one of our way-marked forest walks or you could try the Stocks reservoir circular walks. Fabulous scenery and great opportunities for seeing wildlife.         


Outstanding mountain biking on award winning trails, Brush up your technique on our Bike Skills Loop, then get some adventure on the Bottoms Beck and "The 8" cross country trails or grab some air on the Hope Line.

Other Activities

Lots to do: horse riding, orienteering, wild fishing, kite flying, picnics...


For your enjoyment, we are able to host a range of events throughout the year. From Cloudspotting music and arts festival to ourdoor theatre, bike races and demo days.


Get involved with Gisburn Forest Trail Builders - help bring our motto to life "build them, ride them". Bespoke volunteer days organised for groups - tree planting, tree thinning, dry-stone walling, trail and path work.


There are a wide range of habitats at Gisburn Forest and Stocks supporting a very diverse range of wildlife. There are different things to see in every season.


We would like everyone to be able to enjoy Gisburn Forest. For help planning your visit please this accessibility page.

What do other visitors say?

5 Stars 5 Stars

Walked the circular route around Stocks Reservoir today and had an amazing time. Have to Disagree with the person complaining about lack of signage and map. From School Lane car park (3.00 for day) there were maps available and signs were very good. Route easy to follow. The facilities, quality of paths and general maintenance of the route were all impeccable. Thank you to all who do this work and look after such a beautiful place.

Terry and Jill Parkinson, 12/Jun/2015

Thanks for your feedback, it is great to hear you enjoyed your visit.

Forestry Commission Response
2 Stars 2 Stars

We went to Gisburn Forest hoping for a good walk using an old walks booklet. It seems since it was written the area has been taken over by mountain bikers. We parked on Cocklett Hill car park as advised hy the book. There was no information on the boards for walkers and no warning that taking the marked routes would put you in danger from bikers. We found ourselves stuck on a biking trail cowering in the undergrowth and treated to various complaints from the bikers. If you welcome all to the forest you need to display information for all and warnings. We could have been seriously injured.

Susan, 7/Jun/2015

Sorry to hear you had a disappointing visit. The car park at Cocklet Hill was opened in 1996 specifically as a starting point for bike trails; we have never offered or advertised walks starting from here and I presume that the book of walks to which you refer was published by another. Traditionally all of our way-marked walks have all started at the Stocks reservoir car park. We recently opened a path linking the Stocks reservoir car park to Gisburn Forest Hub and are working on a project to develop new walks from the Hub, a new walking map will also be available in the near future. Many sections of our bike trails have been designed specifically for bike use and have signs warning others against walking along them.

Forestry Commission Response

Hi, we went to walk around Stocks Res yesterday and got hopelessly lost. The signage wasn't particularly visible and those that were, were very faded. I didnt know if there was a map as I think we ended up doing it backwards as well. Some more information here as to the walk, a basic map and some directions to print off would make a big difference to people not having done this loop before. It was a gorgeous walk but we ended up on the res fishing land and were sent off it from the lad on a quad but we got even more lost from there. Unless there is a site you can point me to with more details! Apologies if there are other sites but some advice on here would be helpful.


Emma, 27/Apr/2015

The Stocks reservoir circular walk belongs to and is managed by our neighbours, United Utilities. We will pass on the feedback to our colleagues at United Utilities.

Forestry Commission Response
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What's Here?

  • Cycling
  • Picnic
  • Viewpoint
  • Cafe
  • Forest Den Cafe
  • Mountain biking
  • Skills Loop
  • Easy Access
  • Easy access trail at Gisburn Forest hub.
  • Parking (chargeable)
  • 3 All Day
    1.50 - 1hr
  • Trail (easy)
  • All ability hub trail leading to a viewpoint.
  • Toliets
  • Located at Forest Den Cafe
More about what's here


OS Grid ref: SD745560
Postcode: BB7 4TS

Get directions


Opening & Parking

3 All Day
1.50 - 1hr
Discovery Pass
Get free parking for a year at Gisburn Forest Hub, Cocklet Hill and School Lane car parks, with a Discovery Pass for only 30.
Programme for the Endorsement of Forest Certification certifiedForest Stewardship Council certified