High Dam Tarn

Type; Natural, enlarged by damming
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Location; near Finsthwaite
Accessibility; Access Land
Grid Ref; SD 361 887
Elevation; 172 m (566 feet)
Size; 365m x 190m (1185 x 625 feet)
Area; 5.7 hectares (14.1 acres)
Depth; 10m (33 feet)
Meaning of name;  
Alternative name(s); Finsthwaite Tarn


When the Stott Park Bobbin Mill was opened in 1835 at Finsthwaite, near the foot of Windermere, a power source was required. This was provided by damming Finsthwaite Tarn, creating High Dam Tarn, and using the water to drive a 32-foot water wheel.
In 1858 the water wheel was replaced by a water turbine which required constant water pressure. This was provided by damming the outflow from High Dam to create Low Dam Tarn. High Dam stored the water and Low Dam regulated the pressure. The two tarns were originally surrounded by heather-clad fells, the birch and oak coppice woodland was planted in the latter half of the 19th century to provide wood for the mill and for charcoal burning.

High Dam is indeed a lovely tarn and is easily accessed from a car park at the bottom of the hill and good footpaths to and partway around the lake.