Fernworthy Reservoir

If you love Dartmoor, you’ll love Fernworthy

Fernworthy Reservoir is nestled in the heart of Dartmoor National Park, adjacent to the idyllic village of Chagford. It gravity feeds water into Trenchford Reservoir and supplies Torquay with drinking water. Construction was completed in 1942 and the reservoir holds up to 380 million gallons.

Fernworthy boasts a rich abundance of wildlife and points of archaeological interest such as ancient stone cairns, hut circles and submerged clapper bridges (which can be seen when the water levels are very low – as in 2016).

Public access all year round.


Bird Hide

Disabled Toilets & Access

Picnic Area


Car Park (a small car parking charge helps to support our charity)

Dog Friendly

Foot Paths

Trout Fishing

Fernworthy Reservoir, Newton Abbot, Devon TQ13 8EA

Telephone: 01647 252898

Great days out on Dartmoor

There really is something for everyone at Fernworthy. Facilities include a perfectly located picnic area which provides a regal viewpoint of Fernworthy’s archaeological points of interests and the lake itself. For those who fancy a walk we have recently upgraded some of the paths and site interpretation – made possible by the Moor than Meets the Eye project in partnership with Dartmoor National Park Authority. These improvements mean that people of all abilities can now enjoy time together at this special place. Other marked trails lead you around the reservoir and into the neighbouring forest.

Bird lovers can enjoy the two bird hides, located at the western end of the reservoir in the nature exclusion zone where numerous wader birds such as the Black Tailed Godwit can be seen at certain times of the year.

Trout Fishing

Fernworthy is a natural salmo trutta fishery (more commonly known as brown trout), open from 15 March to 12 October each year and is a traditional fly fishing only lake. Permits are available on-site from the self-service permit hut or online.

Did you know?

Legend says that the quarrying of granite
to build the old Fernworthy Farm disturbed
the earth gnomes who lived deep in the hillside.
These gnomes weren’t happy about this and they
took their revenge by stealing a baby. The tale of
the Fernworthy Vengeance is believed by some to be
behind the catastrophic storm and subsequent
flooding of the reservoir construction site in 1938,
causing serious delays to the work.

Lakes nearby

Roadford Lake


Meldon Reservoir


Burrator Reservoir


Lopwell Dam