Standedge circuit walk

Walking trail

This circular walk explores the variety of landscapes of Marsden Moor. Discover valleys and reservoirs before heading up over open moorland and winding back to Marsden along the Packhorse trail and canal towpath.

Walkers on a Packhorse route on Marsden Moor, West Yorkshire


Map route for Standedge circuit walk


Marsden Moor Estate Office, grid ref: SE047117


From Marsden Station head down Station Road turning right to cross the bridge over the river and onto Church Lane. Follow the road past the church and go straight ahead onto Fall Lane. Follow this road through the tunnel under the A62 and turn right towards the roundabout. Cross the roundabout and walk up Binn Road.


Turn off Binn Road when you reach a public bridleway sign by a wide track on the right. This is the main Wessenden Valley track. Follow this track up the Wessenden Valley passing Butterley and Blakeley reservoirs in turn on your right.


At the Pennine Way fingerpost follow the Pennine Way steeply down into the valley, across the footbridge and then up the steep slope on the other side.


Continue along the Pennine Way to the right, along Blakeley clough crossing the brook at the small sluice to walk up the steps that lead up onto the moor. Continue along the well-defined path until reaching Black Moss and Swellands reservoirs.

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Cross the dam wall and follow the wide path left along the fence line by the side of Black Moss reservoir, going through a gate before heading right to follow a flagged path through one of the National Trust sheep exclosures and downhill to meet the Pennine Bridleway.

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Turn left and walk along the bridleway to Brun Clough car park.


From the car park cross the road and continue to follow the Pennine Way up the track until reaching the Pennine Way/Pennine Bridleway fingerpost opposite a kissing gate. Turn right through the gate to follow the Pennine Way uphill. Follow the path through a field and along the edge with fine views towards Manchester to the west. Continue along the edge passing the trig point and Heritage Trail stone until you reach the square waymarker stone.


At the stone waymarker follow the Pennine Way right away from the edge towards the A640.


Just before reaching the road follow a footpath leading sharp right across a ford. This is the old Packhorse road. Follow this path gently down across the moorland eventually reaching the valley bottom below.

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Cross Easter Gate Bridge and follow the footpath along the riverside to the road. Turn right and follow the road past Hey Green house. After a row of cottages go through the wooden gate on the right to follow a riverside path that emerges at the Standedge Visitor Center. Cross the canal and follow the tow path back to Marsden.


Marsden Moor Estate Office, grid ref: SE047117

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Standedge circuit walk


This 10-mile walk starts along the Wessenden valley track before heading up onto the open moorland on paths that can be muddy and slippery underfoot. Between steps 3 and 4 there is a steep descent and ascent that is uneven underfoot; please take extra care when walking this section.

Follow the Pennine way along the ridge of the Pennines before heading back across the moors and down into Marsden. Some sections of the footpath have been stone flagged and can be slippery underfoot when icy.

Dogs under close control are welcome, but should be kept on leads during the bird nesting and lambing season (March - July).

Standedge circuit walk

Contact us

Standedge circuit walk

How to get here

Marsden Moor Estate office, The Old Goods Yard, Station Road, Marsden, West Yorkshire, HD7 6DH
By train

Marsden station next to Estate Office.

By road

On A62 Manchester Road between Huddersfield and Oldham.

By foot

Pennine Way, Pennine Bridleway, Colne Valley Circular Walk, Standedge Trail.

By bus

First Group Services No 182, 183, 184 or 185 from Huddersfield; 184 from Oldham. Alight at Marsden Manchester Road.

By bicycle

National Cycle Network Route 68 and Pennine Bridleway.

Standedge circuit walk

Facilities and access

  • Car park (free)
  • Various shops and cafés in Marsden village (not National Trust)
  • No immediate local public toilet facilities
  • Marsden Moor Exhibition Room (next the Estate Office in the Old Goods Yard)
  • Dogs under close control are welcome, but should be kept on leads during the bird nesting and lambing season (March - July)