A first half penalty from Gateshead striker Paul Blackett was enough as Town lost 1-0 in their fifth pre-season fixture.
Town dominated large spells of the game but were unable to tuck away the chances they created.
Jack Emmett made his first appearance of pre-season after recovering from injury which had kept him out of the squad since the end of last season.
Emmet was straight into the action after chasing down the Gateshead defence and enforcing the first foul of the game within two minutes.
Captain and right back for the night, Warren Burrell, showed the first sign of promise for Town in the sixth minute, floating a ball to the back post which just evaded the Town strikers.
Three minutes later, Gateshead mustered an attack of their own, forcing George Smith to make a great block to stop the effort heading towards goal.
A penalty was awarded on the 23rd minute when Gateshead number nine Paul Blackett beat James Belshaw to a lobbed through ball. The pair collided and the referee pointed to the spot.
Belshaw dived the correct way but was unable to stop Blackett’s penalty nestling into the bottom right corner.
Town’s number one was forced into action five minutes later, making a fine save down to his left after Blackett got onto the end of a reverse pass inside the box.
Despite being a goal down, Town were still retaining possession well and on the 38th minute it nearly paid off.
George Smith played a delightful ball into the six-yard box, prompting a Mark beck diving header. His attempt narrowly flew over the crossbar to keep the score 1-0 to Gateshead at half-time.
Town started the second half strongly. Two minutes after the restart half time substitute Jack Muldoon firing a low cross into the box for Brendan Kiernan whose first-time attempt was off target.
Confidence was growing as Burrell ran onto a deep cross to hit a spectacular volley into the side netting on the 52nd minute.
Another chance came for Town four minutes later when Joe Leesley lofted a dangerous free kick towards the back-post Connor Hall rose above his man to head powerfully onto the crossbar.
George Smith was causing plenty of trouble for his old team crossing several dangerous balls into the Gateshead box. One nearly got its reward after on the hour mark, Smith fired a low cross into the six-yard box which Mark Beck so nearly got on the end of to tap home.
For the remainder of the second half, Town stayed on the front foot. Lloyd Kerry was provided with a good chance on the 72nd after he headed a Brendan Kiernan cross into the keeper’s gloves.
However, Town were unable to find the equaliser, leaving the Gateshead International Stadium with a narrow defeat.
Harrogate Town: Belshaw, Burrell, W Smith, Hall, G Smith, Kiernan, Emmett, Kerry, Brown (Leesley 45) Jones (Muldoon 45), Beck (Stead 68)
Subs not used: Cracknell
Gateshead: James, Nicholson, Barrow (Trialist 70), Oliver, Lees, Trialist, Thomson, Agnew (Williamson 70), Blackett (Trialist 45), Greenfield, Olley (Cranston 76)
Subs not used: Stephenson, Forbes, Trialist
Goals: Blackett 24
Referee: G Eltringham
Report by Henry Whitaker