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Hart Fell via Hartfell Spa

Dumfries and Galloway Walk

County/Area - Dumfries and Galloway

Author - Simon Tweedie

Length - 7.2 miles / 11.7 km    Ascent - 2200 feet / 667 metres

Time - 5 hours 50 minutes    Grade - moderate

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Walk Route Description

Photo from the walk - Hart Fell via Hartfell Spa
Click image to see photo description.

The walk starts a few miles from Moffat. Driving north through the town on the A701 turn right by Moffat Academy just as the main road takes a sharp left. Follow this road for about three miles until you come to the isolated corrugated building of Annan Water Hall on your right (grid ref. NT075104). There is a small parking space adjacent to the hall.

Hartfell Spa is signposted a few yards north of the hall. Cross the fields then Auchencat Burn can be followed but it entails crossing the burn on some fairly 'dodgy' wooden footbridges. There is an easier path just to the north and higher up on the flank of Well Rig. Either way continue to Hartfell Spa which is a chalybeate spring contained within a small stone structure. Legend has it that Merlin the Magician spent his final years living here before the locals killed him at Drummelzier a few miles north on the Tweed.

You can scramble on up the Spa Well Burn but it is very steep and loose in places with some strange geological features giving an almost Martian feel, quite unlike the surrounding hills. If you wish it is possible to retrace your steps few hundred yards and climb up the flank of Well Rig avoiding the steep section above the Spa.

Continue onwards and upwards over Arthur's Seat until the fence line is reached. If you cross the fence take care as the steep cliffs of Hartfell Craig are not far beyond though the view down the Black Hope Glen is worth it on a clear day. Otherwise follow the fence line northwesterly to the summit of Hart Fell.

There are a number of choices as to return routes. The easiest being is to retrace the route up but an alternative is to descend via Hartfell Shoulder to the west picking up the Lochan Burn and then back to the road.

Other walks nearby

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Walk 2008 Hart Fell via Saddle Yoke & the Black Hope Horseshoemod/hard8.5 miles
Walk 3612 Ettrick Hills Horseshoemod/hard8.0 miles
Walk 2006 Grey Mare's Tail & White Coombmod/hard7.2 miles
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