Parking is at the Cow Bridge car park at the northern end of Brotherswater off the A592. Folklore has it that the small lake of Brotherswater, just half a mile in length, was named after two brothers who are said to have drowned here.
1. Leave the car park by the bridge that crosses a beck and turn left through a gate onto a wide, waterside path.
2. The path rises gently alongside the lake and then continues to a gate. Here, the striking, conical outlines of Middle Dodd and High Hartsop Dodd dominate the view. Carry on and pass to the right of the farm buildings then turn right onto the track that leads past a couple of large barns.
At the end of the barns the path forks. Take the right, uphill fork to a gate and step-stile. The narrow, stony track beyond continues through another gate. Keep the wall on your left through the wood for approximately 1 mile, until you come to a gate in a wall and out onto the open fell-side.
3. On the left, ahead you will soon see and hear Dovedale Beck cascading through narrow rocky channels. As the path gets closer to the beck look for a gate in the wall on the far side of the beck. You will go through this gate when you have crossed the beck.
4. For the best crossing point carry on along the path until you see a large, dead tree-trunk lying on the left. Look now for the two very big boulders in the beck. There is a scrubby little tree growing out of the beck between them. Cross the beck to the right of these two big rocks and make your way downhill, beside a rusty, single-strand wire fence until you come to the gate in the wall.
5. Once through the gate turn left to pick up a quite well-defined, downhill path. Keep the beck on the left until the path bears away right from Dovedale Beck. After a hundred yards or so you will cross another shallow beck to continue on a stony path.
6. You will see on the left, a wooden footbridge. Cross the bridge and turn right to farm track which you will see on the left. Go up the track, past a field barn. Walk, with the wall on your right until in a few hundred yards, you arrive back at Hartsop Hall Farm. Keep left through the farm until you rejoin the lakeside path back to the car park.
Map: OS Outdoor Leisure 5 - English Lakes North Eastern Area
Terrain: Stony, uphill track and field paths. One section to be avoided after heavy rainfall *
Time: 2 hours.
Distance: 3 miles