Cotter Force

View on map  

Find a trail - visit the official visitor site for Yorkshire

Opening Times:

All year round



Venue contact details:


Cotter Force

Turner visited Cotter Force in 1816 during his extensive tour of Yorkshire to collect material for the history of York series.  Turner sketched here on either 27 or 28 of July, having spent the night at the nearby Green Dragon Inn in Hardraw where he sketched at both Mossdale Head and Hardraw Force.

Cotter Force is a lovely secluded waterfall in a wooded setting.  It is a series of about half a dozen waterfalls with the largest single drop being about 1.5m.  The force widens as it descends, from less than a metre at the top to about 4.5m wide at the bottom.

Wheelchair accessDogs accepted

Turner's Viewpoint

Turner clearly enjoyed Cotter Force's seclusion and he made one of his most careful and detailed sketches here (Cotter Force, near Hawes, with Children Looking Over and Dark Pool, 'Yorkshire 4' sketchbook, Tate Gallery, Finberg number: CXLVII 8).  One interesting detail of the sketch is the fact that Turner noted that there were 'children looking over' from the bushes at the top right of his sketch.

The trail is a 490m level path from the roadside alongside the beck which is suitable for wheelchairs. The surface is constructed of compacted stone with a general width of 110cm. There are three seating areas evenly spaced along the footpath.

Discover The Landscape

The Turner Trails panel is located near an existing stone bench, facing the waterfall.

Water in Turner's Yorkshire

Download our themed leaflet and let the rivers and waterfalls guide you around Turner's Yorkshire as water literally flows through many of his sketches and paintings.

The Venue


Holme Heads Bridge, Hawes, North Yorkshire DL8 3. Co-ordinates, 54.319392,-2.232299

Map reference: SD850915

View on map
Directions to Cotter Force:

Access from the A684 Hawes-Garsdale road near Holme Heads Bridge, approximately 2 miles W of Hawes