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Remember to prepare properly before heading out on any type of walk or outdoor activity. Tell people where you are going and what time you are expected back. As Wainwright says “There’s no such thing as bad weather, only unsuitable clothing”.

© Steve Bastiman

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Walk Details
Cotter Force Walk is one of the Yorkshire Dales National Parks ‘Miles without Stiles’ walking routes.

This secluded waterfall is about two miles north-west of the town of Hawes and a mile north-west of the village of Hardraw towards the head of Wensleydale. There is some limited road side parking at the start of the walk.

After the Yorkshire Dales Millennium Trust carried out an upgrade to its footpath, Cotter Force is now accessible to wheelchair users and less mobile visitors.

It is only a short, gentle walk, along a purpose built path, to the bottom of the waterfall and is suitable for any type of wheelchair as the surface of the track is constructed of compacted stone with a general width of 110cm.

There are three seating areas evenly spaced along the footpath. The path runs alongside the Cotterdale Beck and wildlife is in abundance. Look out for dippers, grey wagtails, redstarts and king fishers.

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The artist Joseph Turner visited Cotter Force in 1816 during his extensive tour of Yorkshire to collect material for the history of York series.  He was commissioned to draw the illustrations for this book that was written by Thomas Dunham Whitaker.

The nearest accessible toilets (RADAR) are situated in Hawes, which is only a short drive away. In Hawes, there is a large carpark with blue badge parking areas. Enjoy a welcoming cuppa, in the Firebox café which is located inside the Dales Museum, which is all wheelchair accessible.

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