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Towering high above Bassenthwaite Lake, Dodd Wood provides unrivalled views from Derwent Water to the south and to the hills of Dumfries and Galloway. These are especially enjoyed by those prepared to make the journey to the summit.

The tearoom and car park are open.

Trails to the Osprey viewpoints are open, and there is a diverted trail signed to reach the Dodd Summit. Maps available from the tearoom.

All other trails are still closed due to harvesting works.


Walking trails


PLEASE NOTE: Most trails are currently CLOSED due to harvesting works. There are trails open to reach the lower and upper Osprey viewpoints and a diverted trail to the Dodd Summit. Maps available from the tearoom.

Dodd Wood offers attractive and varied waymarked trails from a central carpark with picnic areas and toilets.

Dodd Summit trail 4.75km (3 miles) Allow 3 hours

Sandbed Gill trail 2.5 km (1.5 miles) Allow 2 hours

Skill Beck trail 2.5km (1.5 miles) Allow 2 hours

Douglas Fir trail 1.5km (1 mile) Allow 1 hour

Wonderful Wildlife

In the spring each year Dodd Wood becomes the focus of attention for bird lovers waiting for the arrival of the Bassenthwaite Ospreys who can be seen from viewpoints in the forest. 

The lower viewpoint is open April to September between 10am and 5pm daily, and it is suggested that all visitors should make their way here first.  From this viewpoint excellent views of the ospreys fishing over the lake can be seen, as well as the resident red squirrels, and a host of woodland birds.  On visiting the lower viewpoint, the staff and volunteers will give you the information you require to get you safely to the upper viewpoint.

Over the course of most days the Ospreys can be seen fishing, sitting, feeding, flying and washing. High powered telescopes and binoculars are provided but by all means bring your own.


Food and drink

The Old Sawmill tearoom stands beside the car-park. The tearoom specialises in homemade Cumbrian cooking.

Cakes, scones, sandwiches, soups and hot dishes are made on the premises. Among the favourites are:

The Old Sawmill Special (a large Cumberland sausage in a roll with apple sauce served with salads), welsh rarebit muffin, luscious lemon cake, date slice and warm sticky gingerbread with rum butter and cream.

The tearoom was originally a working sawmill until 1970 and it was converted to its present use in 1981. The history of the building and the area is outlined on the walls of the tearoom along with a display of old photographs and forest tools.

In summer the cafe is open daily from 10am until 5pm.
In winter the cafe is closed from early December until early February. 
Please call for more information, 017687 74317.


Opposite the car park is the entrance to Mirehouse. Set in beautifull grounds it was once the home of James Spedding, a noted literary figure of the nineteenth century. Still in the Spedding family, the house is delightfully unspoilt and harks back to the heyday of the English country manor house. Open from April to October tickets are available from the tearoom

What do other visitors say?

4 Stars 4 Stars

There were no maps left outside the toilets when we went on 14/06/17

E. Graham, 15/Jun/2017

Thanks for letting us know and apologies for the oversight. For future reference, it's also possible to pick up a map from the tearoom.

Forestry Commission Response
3 Stars 3 Stars

Four of us went to see the nest and Ospreys in the past week. The staff are very helpful and knowledgeable. No sign of a flying osprey. Fine. We were very keen to see the nest but the telescopes used by the staff are not powerful enough to see anything clearly. Unless you go with a very powerful telescope you will not see the nest and birds.

Charlie, 1/Jun/2017
5 Stars 5 Stars

I visited Dodd Wood and climbed the summit trail as a 7 year old 41 years ago with my parents and siblings. It triggered a lifelong love of fell walking. 41 years later and 20odd years since my last visit I took my family including five year old son to the summit in perfect weather. The Forestry Commission do a great job with the Dodd - many thanks to them and their diligence.

Andrew Fitton, 2/Oct/2016
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Last updated: 30th March 2018

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What's Here?

  • Cafe
  • Picnic
  • Walking
  • Toliets
  • Parking (chargeable)
  • 1.5 hours 1.80
    2 hours 2.80
    4 hours 4.90
    All day 6.30
    Minibus/coach 10.00
    Disabled badge holders Free
  • Wildlife
  • Osprey Watch - Public Viewing of the first breeding wild ospreys in England for 150 years. Open April to August annually
More about what's here


OS Grid ref: NY240275

Get directions


Recreation Ranger
01768 778469

Opening & Parking

1.5 hours 1.80
2 hours 2.80
4 hours 4.90
All day 6.30
Minibus/coach 10.00
Disabled badge holders Free
Discovery Pass
20 for year round free parking and other benefits

Related documents

Useful sites

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England's Woods and Forests are cared for by Forest Enterprise England, an agency of the Forestry Commission.