Mortimer Forest


If you want to go for a walk, be sure to check out Mortimer Forest. Offering a variety of walks of differing lengths, the Forest is full of wildlife, including birds of prey, deer and even lizards. The Forest covers a thousand hectares, and was planted by the Forestry Commission in the 1920s.

There are 5 main walking trails at Mortimer Forest. The shortest of these is the All Ability Trail, which is 1 mile long and starts at the Vinnalls Car Park. It has an easy access surface as well as seating along the way, so is perfect if you have mobility issues or very small children. To see archaeological features including quarries and an ancient farmstead, try the Black Pool Loop, which starts from the Black Pool car park. It is 1.5 miles long, but be sure to where good footwear, as the walk can be muddy with roots and rocks.

For a slightly longer walk, go to the Whitcliffe Car Park and try the Whitcliffe Loop, which is 2 miles long. This walk includes stunning views down the Mary Knoll Valley. There is seating along this walk, and good footwear is essential as it can be muddy. Alternatively, park at the Vinnalls Car Park and take a 3 mile walk around the Vinnalls loop. This walk ascends to the summit of High Vinnalls, so offers incredible panoramic views of the forest in all directions. It can be quite steep and muddy, so wear good footwear and don’t go on it if you struggle with hills.

The longest walk you can take is the Climbing Jack Trail, which is 9 miles long so could take about a day. It starts at the Vinnalls car park, and takes in most of Mortimer Forest. It offers fabulous views of the region, as well as allowing you to walk through a variety of woodland types and habitats. Bear in mind that this walk can be quite muddy, steep and long, so only go for it if you are confident at walking all day.

At each car park there are picnic tables, so be sure to bring one along if visiting. Mortimer Forest is about 15 minutes drive from St Milburga Chapel.

Opening Hours

The Whitcliffe Car Park is only open from Monday to Friday, 8-3pm, however the other two car parks are open everyday from dawn til dusk. Just watch out for height restriction barriers, as these can be found at the Vinnalls and Black Pool Car Parks. All parking is free.