Swinsty Reservoir

Swinsty Reservoir nestles in the stunning Washburn Valley and provides breathtaking views across the water and the surrounding landscape, especially from the embankment near the River Washburn.

Swinsty Reservoir

We're carrying out essential work that may affect your visit

To keep everyone safe while we're working, we need to close the crest road over the embankment.
You won't be able to walk your usual route for a while, but don't worry there's a diversion in place!

Read about the work and check out the diversion

Covid-19 update

In accordance with government guidance, our recreational sites and car parks remain open for people to exercise outdoors. We ask that you follow the latest guidance on group sizes and social distancing to help keep yourself, our key workers and others safe.

If you do plan to visit, we continue to request that you are respectful of our sites, staff members, other visitors and local communities:

  • Do not light any BBQs or fires and call 999 to report any uncontrolled fires that may be at risk of spreading.
  • Make sure you take any litter home with you.
  • Please follow any instructions on signage around the site.
  • Please follow designated paths. The paths are there to keep you and our key workers safe.
  • If the car park is full, please do not park on verges or on the road as this causes traffic issues and can block important access for operational vehicles or the emergency services.

Discover breathtaking views at Swinsty Reservoir 

Swinsty Reservoir can be found in the Washburn valley, less than 10 miles north of Otley and west of Harrogate. Along with the adjacent Fewston Reservoir, it is a very popular site for visitors throughout the year. There's plenty of choice for those seeking recreation in the great outdoors; whether you’re looking for a gentle stroll around the well-surfaced reservoir paths or a wander through the nearby fields and woods. Also welcome are cyclists and horse riders, as well as anglers seeking high quality course and fly fishing.

Facilities

ParkingDisabled parking  Toilets    Disabled toilet Picnic area

Activities

Walking Fishing  

Walks

Walk Distance Difficulty Facilities
Swinsty walk 3 miles 1 out of 4

ParkingDisabled parking Toilets  Disabled toilet Picnic area

Swinsty Beaver Dyke walk 4.25 miles 4 out of 4

ParkingDisabled parking Toilets  Disabled toilet Picnic area

Fishing

The Washburn Valley Fishery offers exceptionally high quality fly and coarse fishing in a stunning rural setting.

Go fishing

Reservoir

Make a day of it

While you're here, why not visit a nearby reservoir?

Fewston Reservoir

Situated in the charming Washburn valley, sharing an embankment with Swinsty Reservoir, Fewston is popular with walkers and runners. Cyclists and horse-riders can also make use of their own permitted tracks in the surrounding woodlands.

Thruscross Reservoir

Thruscross is the highest reservoir in the charming Washburn Valley feeding water into Fewston, Swinsty and Lindley Wood reservoirs. With its altitude comes stunning views of the valley and surrounding moorland.

How to get there

By car

Swinsty Moor and Fewston Reservoir car park (LS21 2NP) is at the southern end of the Fewston Reservoir Embankment. Alternative parking is available at Stack Point car park (HG3 1SU), along the eastern edge of Swinsty Reservoir. Please note that both have a 2.2m height barrier.


From Harrogate

Take the A59 heading west. Before you reach Blubberhouses, turn left at the roundabout onto the B6451. Take the second right onto Wydra Lane, which becomes Back Lane and takes you across Fewston Reservoir Embankment. Shortly afterwards you will reach Swinsty Moor and Fewston Reservoir car park.


By public transport

Unfortunately there's no public transport currently available to Swinsty Reservoir.

More things to do near Harrogate

Whether you fancy a gentle stroll around a reservoir, a challenging hike, a bike ride with the family, a bit of pony trekking or an afternoon of fishing, there's plenty to do around Harrogate.

Find more things to do near Harrogate

Muddy wellies

Can you swim in Swinsty Reservoir?

No, you can't swim in Swinsty Reservoir. Reservoirs are really dangerous places and have lots of dangers hidden under the surface. We don't allow anyone to swim in our reservoirs, even if you’re a great swimmer!

Why can’t you swim in Swinsty Reservoir?

Swinsty Reservoir has lots of hidden dangers. The water is very cold (even in summer) and cold water shock can kill. Swinsty Reservoir supplies water to be treated, so there's machinery and strong currents under the water. There may also be blue-green algae, which causes rashes and severe illnesses.

Can dogs swim in Swinsty Reservoir?

No, it’s not safe for dogs to swim in Swinsty Reservoir and they shouldn’t drink the water. Blue-green algae can form on the surface, which is poisonous and can kill them. There’s also dangerous machinery and strong currents under the water.

Is wild swimming allowed in Swinsty Reservoir?

No, Swinsty Reservoir is dangerous. Reservoirs aren't the same as natural lakes, they’re man-made and have large machinery that’s working 24/7 just below the surface. They’re also very cold, have strong currents and might have blue-green algae which causes rashes and severe illness.