Things to see and do at Hardcastle Crags

A family walk through woodland past a waterfall

Once home to a railway and a cotton mill Hardcastle Crags has many interesting tales to tell, help us ensure it's future by discovering its past.

Gibson Mill

In the middle of Hardcastle Crags you'll find Gibson Mill, home to the Weaving Shed Cafe and Shop. This former cotton mill and entertainment emporium boasts a fantastic and varied history. We have tours, exhibitions and special events throughout the year.

Explore the past

People have lived, worked and played in this surprising location for over 200 years. Weirs, stepping stones and packhorse trails all hint at past activities.
Visit Gibson Mill to find out how a cotton mill became a popular entertainment venue before being transformed into an ' #OffTheGrid ' visitor centre and cafe.
Keeping younger visitors busy is easy with so much to explore
Finding out who lives in the pond


50 things to do before you're 11 ¾

We have a whole summer full of family friendly activities for you to enjoy. Why not come and learn how to cook on a campfire, build a den or discover what lives in our mill pond, to name but three. Download the planner and get your summer started.

Summer Planner 2016 (PDF / 0.3MB) download .


Hardcastle Crags, West Yorkshire
Woman and dogs crossing river using stepping stones



Choose one of our waymarked trails and head off into the woods. The light on crisp winter mornings is glorious and may bring out your inner artist.

Railway Trail

It's hard to imagine that this peaceful valley once had a railway built to transport workers from their temporary homes at 'Dawson City' up to the reservoirs at Gorple, Widdop and Walshaw Dean.

Mill Walk

The valleys of Hardcastle Crags, west of Halifax, offer stunning riverside views while the oak, beech and pine woods are full of tumbling streams. Whether you decide to climb the rocky paths to the hilltops or enjoy a picnic by old weirs, there’s plenty of wildlife to see.

Wood Folk Walk

Follow the way-markers on this circular walk through the woods and find out more about the wonderful trees at Hardcastle Crags.

Download our Wood Folk Walk (PDF / 1.8MB) download


Upcoming events

Discover what's in a pond - 50 things to do before you're 11 3/4

Thu 25 Aug 2016
Have a go at pond dipping and see how many amazing creatures you can find!

Cook on a campfire - 50 Things to do before you're 11 3/4

Fri 26 Aug 2016
Learn how to dig a fire pit and light a fire without matches, then have a go at popcorn making or even try baking your own campfire bread!

Find your way with a map and compass - 50 Things to do before you're 11 3/4

Tue 30 Aug 2016
Join in with this free session to learn how to use a compass and use your new skills to navigate your way around Hardcastle Crags.

Create some wild art - 50 Things to do before you're 11 3/4

Wed 31 Aug 2016
Get creative with natural materials and help to make an outdoor art gallery, or maybe something to take away. We've got lots of ideas and plenty of materials to help you get started!

Guided Walk: Packhorse Trails

Sat 17 Sep 2016
A medium to hard 6 mile walk ending at Gibson Mill and which will explore the heritage of the ancient paths which were used to transport anything and everything from salt to lime and cloth: they were constructed to be used by Galloway horses...

Fungi Foray

Sun 18 Sep 2016
Fascinating Fungi Foray with Anne Bowers and Drew Marsh