Brackenlea Cottage

Northumberland National Park

A walk from Brackenlea Cottage in the Northumberland National Park, via the Drakestone and Alwinton, in pictures

harbottle from brackenlea cottage

This 5 mile walk from the cottage takes in the Drakestone and Alwinton. Click on the photos to open larger versions in a new browser window.

Start by walking past the pub and carry on through the village Old English Sheepdog

This shaggy Old English Sheepdog will usually leap excitedly around the front garden of one of the cottages barking at you.

Harbottle Hills Harbottle Hills and Drakestone

The walk will take you to the Drakestone, which is the flat topped boulder you can just see on top of the hill just right of centre.

This is a clearer view of the Drakestone, the walk goes along the edge of the conifer wood you can see on the right.

Harbottle Hills Walk rest
Follow the public footpath diagonally up and across the field to a stone stile in the wall. Go through a gate onto the moor where there's a handy seat.

Harbottle Hills Walk
Carry on up the hill ...

Harbottle Hills Cairn
... to a cairn.

harbottle hills view from cairn
The view from the cairn back down to the village is spectacular. Carry on up the hill and take the left hand path towards the Drakestone

drakestone rock climbing
The Drakestone is a good spot for rock climbing.

Harbottle Lough approach
Beware of going up the steps cut into the Drakestone, it's a lot harder coming back down again!

Carry on up past the Drakestone and then right and on to Harbottle Lough.


Harbottle Lough in evening

Harbottle Lough
Harbottle Lough frosty
Go along the side of the Lough until you reach the a fence with signs warning you that you are at the edge of the Otterburn ranges. Follow the fence up the hill towards the wood. These two photos are looking back down to the Lough. Go into the wood and follow the line of old concrete fence posts until you emerge at a gated unmetalled road, known as The Coal Road.
Harbottle lough winters day

Alwinton Church
The 'Coal Road' used to run from some old mines on the Ranges.

Alwinton Church - summer
The same view in summer, looking towards Alwinton Church.

Cheviot hills and Alwinton
Carry on down the Coal Road onto the Harbottle-Alwinton road and turn left and continue to Alwinton and a pint and a snack.


Alwinton Church paddock
Retrace your steps back past the church and turn left at Low Alwinton holiday cottages. Follow this track past the limekilns.

Alwinton Lime Kilns

Alwinton tone whippet
Continue past a farm, which has two strange life sized stone whippets at the gate. Follow the track across fields and down through a wood to a cottage.
Harbottle Foot Bridge
A few hundred metres after the cottage a footbridge takes you back into Harbottle.
river coquet on a sunny afternoon The riverbank at the footbridge is a great spot to relax on a sunny afternoon after the walk.

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