Hartfell Spa

Walking Route

Hartfell Spa


Linear upland route following Auchencat Burn. 5.5km/3½ miles. Allow 1½ hours. Grass and hard surfaced track with drain crossings and wet patches & gates.

Boots recommended and a torch for the spa.

For parking, drive up Moffat High Street and turn right on Beechgrove immediately after the school. This is signed for Annan Water and is the start of the Old Edinburgh Road. After three miles park at the corrugated Annan Water hall. Ensure that you do not block any field entrance and leave space for another vehicle (Moffat Mountain Rescue).

Start Cross Auchencat Burn, turn right through the kissing gate and follow the side of the burn to the second gate. Follow the top edge of the valley to the next gate. Cross the small burn on the flat ground to your left and return to the edge of the slope. You will soon reach a stone wall that bisects the earthworks of an old settlement, possibly a fort from the first millennium BC. Pass through the kissing gate and follow the fence.

When the fence turns right (to a point) take the short route (the open side of the triangle) to rejoin the fence line. Pass through the final kissing gate and turn left along the fence to connect with the track that runs above the landslip and then contours the slope. As you approach the steep scree lined valley of Spa Well Burn the track descends to connect with a path leading to the valley entrance and on to the chalybeat (iron rich) spring of Hartfell Spa.

Discovered in 1748 by John Williamson, who was leading a mining operation by Auchencat Burn, this spring water had curative properties for ‘debility and anaemia’. Unlike the sulphurous water from Moffat Well this could be bottled and was sent as far afield as the West Indies. Return along the same route or take the burnside route if it has been re-instated.

2mi / 3km
Total climb:
984ft / 300m
Total descent:
0ft / 0m
Our best efforts have been made to ensure the accuracy of data, however the data and geographic information contained along route lines and on maps should be used for informational purposes only.

What you'll see

Hartfell Spa - Moffat

Animals & Wildlife