Forestry Commission logo

Discovery Pass

Discover the
freedom of
the forest…
every day of the year…

Get free parking, discounts on events and much more with an annual Discovery Pass


The ultimate free guide to our forests

Forest Xplorer running on iPhone and Android devices
Forest of Dean

Explore Mallards Pike Lake
(Average user rating: 5 unrated 4.4/5)

This beautiful setting is a great spot for a picnic or a gentle lakeside walk. Admire the wildlife or jump onto the Go Ape high ropes course. 

Most ponds in the forest were made to supply water wheels that powered the mills and iron forges of the Forests industrial past but these were made by the Forestry Commission for the community’s pleasure. The larger, lower pond is used for water sports, the upper pond is left undisturbed for wildlife.

New Mallards Pike Cafe

Mallards Pike cafe serves a selection of hot and cold food and drinks from the lakeside setting.  There is both indoor and outdoor seating available, the cafe is  run by Pedalabikeaway.  01594 729000

Fantastic forest trails

Mallards Pike Lake provides a good range of trails with something for everybody, try the easy access lakeside path, the running trail or series of Ramblers' Routes. 

Roots Adventure 

Children jumping from a tree stump.

Roots Adventures at Mallards Pike is run by Wye Ventures CIC.  Previously known as ParcoursO, Young Roots is aimed at families with children under the age of 13 and Root Explore at children over the age of 10.  


Sign your ID card (register), grab your SI card (essential low-key tech), practice on the ParcoursO course before taking on the natural obstacle courses in the woods.  

Sessions (pre-bookable) are 10am - 4pm Tuesday to Sunday. Closed Monday.

Go Ape Tree Top Adventure

Enjoy adventure high above the forest floor, taking on zip-wires, tarzan swings and a variety of obstacles!  For more information and to book visit Go Ape.

Go Ape Forest Segway  

Get off the beaten track on board an all-terrain forest segway – Go Ape’s epic forest adventure with a down-to-earth twist. It’s a totally unique way to tackle our trails. Min age 10yrs and min weight 7 Stone. For more information and to book visit Go Ape Forest Segway.

Organised watersports

The lower lake can be booked by groups for canoe, kayak or raft building activities, please contact the Forestry Commission office for details. Individual boaters and swimming are not permitted.

More about the name...

The name Mallards Pike does not refer to pike (fish) or to mallard although mallards and other ducks are seen here in winter.

This pike is a turnpike or toll road: the mallard comes from a Mr Maller who lived until the early 1950’s in a toll keepers cottage which was close to where you turned off the Parkend to Blakeney road. Maller’s Turnpike became Mallard’s Pike.

On your bike!

Mallards Pike provides easy access to the Family Cycle Trail.  Just follow the signs to the trail along the link path, passing the Go Ape cabin and Adidas trail start first.  Cyclists - please dismount around the picnic area and only push around the lakeside walking path.

Parking Charges

Pay and Display parking operates at Mallards Pike, monies raised are essential for site maintenance and improvements.  Please bring the correct change with you as the P&D machines do not currently take card payments. Card payments can be taken in the cafe for car parking tickets.

Go Ape customers can pay for parking at the Go Ape cabin if you do not have the correct change for the pay and display machine.

Peak  (weekends, bank holidays and Gloucestershire school holidays)
Up to 2 hours £3
2-4 hours       £4
All Day           £5

Off Peak (Monday-Friday during school term time)
Up to 2 hours  £2
2-4 hours       £3
All Day           £4

Coaches (vehicles with over 20 seats)      Minibus
Peak £10, Off Peak £8                              Peak £8, Off Peak £6 

Regular visitors can save money with a Discovery Pass
£30 for a whole year - that's just £2.50 a month and gives free parking for a year as well as a range of other benefits! 


Flying of Drones in the Forest of Dean

The general use of UAVs (unmanned aerial vehicles) or drones as they are more commonly known is not permitted on or over the Forest of Dean as part of our byelaws.

Drones should not be flown over people and as much of our land is open access we cannot guarantee an area is ever completely empty. Drones should not be flown near property and the special nature of the Forest makes the risk of damage more serious.  The Forest is also is home to protected birds of prey. If disturbed by a drone, the owner is liable to prosecution.

If you wish to fly a drone in the Forest you need to first obtain a permit from us. Please do get in touch by emailing  to find out more.

What do other visitors say?

5 Stars 5 Stars

Stunning area, wonderful atmosphere. Glad to see nature protected like, hope area's like these become increasingly protected and common. A big thannks to the Forestry Commission.

Emily, 9/Aug/2018

Are dogs able to walk this route please

Donna Watkins, 4/Jan/2018

Yes, well behaved dogs are very welcome at Mallards Pike. Please ensure they are under close control or on a lead at all times and that any mess is cleared up.

Forestry Commission Response
3 Stars 3 Stars

Very Poor Trail markings spoilt our walk - disappointing!!!

Anonymous, 6/Oct/2017

Thank you for your feedback, we are looking into improving trail signage at this site.

Forestry Commission Response
More user comments

Please tell us about your visit

Please email us at if you have an enquiry, a complaint or would like a personal reply to your comments.

Email addresses will not be shown

Last updated: 17th August 2018

Help us take care of your forest

What's Here?

  • No swimming
  • Parking (chargeable)
  • Segway
  • Walking
  • Toliets
  • Cafe
  • a mobile catering unit can be found on site at weekends and in the school holidays
  • Cycling
  • easy access onto the Family Cycle Trail
  • Horse riding
  • The stoned road network is suitable for riding.
  • Picnic
  • picnic tables in the woods and on the grass


OS Grid ref: SO 637093

Get directions


West England District
0300 067 4800

Opening & Parking

Opening Times:
Open by 8am daily. Closing times:
Nov- Feb 5.00pm
March 6.30pm
April 8pm
May - Aug 9pm
Sept 7.30pm
Oct 6.30pm
Discovery Pass
30 cars

Useful sites

Family activities

Programme for the Endorsement of Forest Certification certifiedForest Stewardship Council certified

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