Valley of Desolation & Simon's Seat

A truly rewarding walk


This tranquil valley links the River Wharfe corridor to Barden Fell. Walk up through the valley and discover that nature has long since repaired the devastation. At its head walkers are rewarded with a beautiful waterfall. The walk continues up on to the moors to Simon’s Seat, where on a clear day, the views are breathtaking.

Barden Moor and Barden Fell Open Access

The Valley of Desolation is an access point to Barden Fell Open Access. Walks on Barden Moor and Barden Fell are suitable for the more experienced and well equipped walker. Dogs are not permitted on Barden Moor and Barden Fell other than the public rights of way which cross Barden Moor. Therefore, dogs cannot go up the Valley of Desolation and to Simon's Seat. Barden Moor and Barden Fell Open Access may be closed if there is a risk of fire or for shooting (Aug-Dec).

Barden Moor and Barden Fell Open Access will not be closed for shooting until September 2019.
Closure dates for shooting will be posted at the beginning of September and at the beginning of each month thereafter.

Closures include the following walks:

  • Valley of Desolation
  • Simon’s Seat
  • Rocking Hall

Download the walk to Simon's Seat ▸

Simon's Seat is a rocky outcrop 485m above sea level. The name is thought to relate to Druids who followed Simon Magus who claimed to be one of the Three Wise Men.