DATE                                           21.02.13

DISTANCE                                 ABOUT 8.4 MILES

WEATHER                                COLD AND GREY (BUT NO SNOW)


Tunstall Reservoir

My last day off before I had to go back to work and my third day of consecutive walking, so far I hadn’t had any problems with either Arty Leg or my stump, but I had been sticking to relatively flattish walk and trying to keep the distance to around 8 miles each day, and tempting as it was to do more I really wanted to see how things behaved at this sort of distance and not push it.

I had heard about Tunstall Reservoir and was curious about it, so I did what I always do when I am planning a walk down that neck of the woods and went on mike knipes pie blog and after a quick look through quickly found what I was looking for, not only had he thrown in a map which I quickly copied onto memory map he also had a few photos throw in as well, it would seem that this walk was on the county council (Durham) guided walks so it shouldn’t have any surprises for me . So that was it.

Once again I was up early because I was running my daughter to work (dad’s taxi) so I had a nice early start. Once I had kicked her out off I went.

 as normal I wasn’t sure where the place was  yes I had a good idea where it was but hadn’t even looked at a map just trusting to luck , I have a built in sat nav in the car , it’s really good if………………… know what you are doing with it but I can honestly say I have never succeeded yet it getting the right place just using this device and today proved no different to usual when it started yelling at me to turn around before I even got on the main A1 road so once again I simply switched it off and made a mental note that I must get round to reading the booklet that came with it . however I knew the reservoir was near Wolsingham and I knew where that was so I trusted to luck that even I couldn’t miss a big wet reservoir , as it was it was well sign posted and I had no trouble finding the free car park .

Once again I was very impressed with the car park (it’s free) and the fact that there was picnic tables dotted about and what could have been a boating office? With toilets in? Naturally it was closed and locked up so I couldn’t comment on how clean the facilities where.

coffee  was made and whilst I was sorting my gear out one of the local ducks decided it would have a looking in my ruck sack , it didn’t seem bothered at all , just quacked at me when it realised that there was nothing for it to eat .

Fat duck.

 I promised it that I would save it a few bits of bread when I got back and to hang around, however it soon buggered off to the next person who promptly started to feed it.  After a quick chat with this local lady it was time for me to set off, with her shouting at me not to be too long as it was going to snow later on. The funny thing was everyone I met on this walk all ended up telling me about the weather and that it’s going to snow later on so don’t be out too long , it got me thinking what if it had been summer ? What would we have talked about?

Any way the route, (see map) nothing to get excited about …just an easy very pleasant days walking, lots of nice views and nothing nasty that is waiting just around the corner,(apart from a huge wooden stile )

Big wooden stile.


& it would be the easiest thing in the world to extend this route and there are several paths that are screaming at me to go and explore, but I was sticking to my self appointed 8 miles but promised myself that I would return and have another days walking around this area.

Weather wise it was yet another dull freezing cold day with a very cold wind, however the snow that everyone was talking about didn’t put in an appearance whilst I was down that way , but with the ground being frozen it mad for easy walking especially over what could have been soft wet boggy ground. And I bet in the warmer summer months this would be a smashing little walk to do.

As per normal a few photos from this route .enjoy.

Taken from where I parked up looking out across the lake showing some of the picnic tables.

Looking back, the wooden hut was shut up for the colder months; it will be interesting to see what was inside it.

 Looking along the reservoir towards the dam , the path takes you along the shore line.

Nearly at the “dam” looking across to the spillway, I hope to have a closer look on my way back.

Looking back down the reservoir.

Not sure what I am looking at here.

Starting to gently climb up looking back .

A couple of photos showing the type of terrain around here.

Old ruin, I think that there might have been a small holding around here, looking at the ruined walls etc. . . .

Starting to head down and along towards Wolsingham (or at least in that direction)

Some of the locals.

Looking back.

Strange tree that someone has been using as a shelter thingy .

Crossing over the Waskerley Beck.


Showing signs of the recent floods.

Small water falls.

Not sure what this is about.

Old bit of farm equipment.

The path ahead, again very easy walking for me.

The views.

Looking back.

Unnamed ditch with a bit of water running down it.

Looking back along the track that I am now walking along.

Looking down towards the dam.

Now on the dam looking at part of what I think is the spillway or whatever it’s called .

Ducks feeding on top of the spillway.

Part of the dam and the stone house that contains the huge valves that help control the level of water in the reservoir.

Looking along the dam.

The valve house.

Top part of the spillway system.

Looking up the reservoir.

The footbridge over the spillway.

The valve house.

Now entering the woods for the walk around the reservoir.

Looking back along the footpath.

Looking across to the road bridge on the other side.

Looking at a separate body of water, I believe that this bit is a nature reserve.

Now back on the path that follows the shore line , a last few photos before I get back to the car park.

Last look at the dam.

Day after thoughts

8.4 miles and about 1010 ft. of ups and downs but all very easy , so I didn’t expect to have any aches or pains in the morning , apart from the normal aches and pains that seem to accompany me now days but it was my third consecutive day of walking and I was a bit concerned on how my stumpy leg would stand up to the constant pressure , as luck would have it I had no problems and even where I normally get a sore spot where the skin is rubbed off hadn’t happened so I will mark this up as a success and will start to up the distance and try to start going up a few more hills again .as for old arty kx06 leg he performed brilliantly and when I asked him if he was ok he replied that I was a wimp and should have done at least 10 miles each day ….be haps he is right , on my next few days off I will try and see.