Walk 142 [7.3 miles] - Clun, Purlogue and Upper Treverward

OS201 OS137 garmin

9 of us gathered on a rather damp looking morning at the car park by the river at Clun. The forecast suggested that we just might get our walk completed without getting very wet and so we set off up Church Bank - a good steady pull with the sun coming out to reward our efforts.

Heading towards Purlogue

We turned across the fields and headed in the direction of Purlogue and took our break in a sheltered spot above the Teme valley overlooking Purlogue. Anne came up trumps with festive mince pies all round - thanks very much Anne (glad the new cooker worked OK).

Coffee break - note the black clouds

Our coffee break view across the Teme valley

Call me suspicious but I drew attention to the gathering clouds - but hey - we didn't care and we set off down the hill and eventually crossed the Teme; stopping briefly for Ruth and 2 horses before we continued along the road - mercifully free of mud - and passed through Upper Treverward. As Colin said, it's one of those place names you see a lot and say to yourself "I wonder what's down that road". So now we know!

Ruth & horses - nuff said!

We continued along the road passing between Rock Hill and Llanfair Hill on a gentle climb followed by a gentle descent until we diverted back into the mud at Lleyn and finally down the High Street to the car park at Clun. It had started to rain so we figured we had just about got away with it. 7.3 miles in great company and thanks to Anne and Colin for finding this route.


Walk 141 [5.8 miles] - Stansbatch and Wapley Hill

OS201 OS137 garmin

11 of us made it to the starting line today, and we are pleased to welcome Carol into our group for the first time.

Ian and Margaret promised a short walk "the other side of Lingen" - so we drove almost to Presteigne and parked in the Forestry Commission car park at Wapley Hill and set off.

In very short order we found ourselves slipping and sliding in muddy furrows. Little did we know that a lot worse was to come.

We walked through The Warren which was quite delightful, (ignoring the mud) and with the low sun slanting through the trees it was quite picturesque. We headed down hill and emerged from the wood and crossed a field where Margaret, in the lead, tried to drop through an insecure manhole cover into a large pipe. Fortunately there were plenty of people to dust her down and we continued into Stansbatch where we diverted to the small Baptist Church (1863) to read an interesting notice on the outside of the porch.

The Warren

Emerging from The Warren

Old barn at Stansbatch
above 3 photos courtesy Ian H-C

The Baptist church - Stansfield

To deal with the world population explosion in this century God has made us to invent mighty powerful agricultural machinery such as the combine harvester. For which we should thank and love God who prospers us and who says:-

Let not the mighty man glory so much in his Might...but let him glory in this..that he knows and understands Me that I Am The Lord. Jer.9.23-24. The Lord is the author of prosperity!

As we continued Margaret and Ian were overheard to be muttering about "big ploughed field..." and "..lots of mud..", so we figured we were in for a bit of a muddy time. We started to swing back towards Wapley Hill and then crossed a very muddy ploughed field. Most of us ended up with large mud-laden boots but it wasn't THAT bad really - then we came to the fence - the electric fence!!! - and a thin strip of unploughed field that a midget might have negotiated successfully.

Interesting looking sheep

The promised ploughed field

L-R Colin, Mike, Graham

Centre - Geri

At last an opportunity came to cross the fence and get our feet out of the mud. Colin, ever helpful, offered to hold the electric fence down as I straddled it - imagine my surprise and reaction when, as I was halfway across, (in the most vulnerable position) he leapt back allowing the fence wife to twang into my nether regions whilst he complained about receiving a shock. Nuff said.

Climbing back up to The Warren

We were now back in Stansbatch and heading up the fields passing Margaret's manhole (skilfully avoided) and climbing back up into The Warren where we stopped for lunch.


Anne examines an interesting 4 bird carving
above 3 photos courtesy Ian H-C

On the way to Wapley Hill fort

We continued our climb up to the magnificent and huge hill fort. Fortunately, Ian refrained from delivering the promised 34 page thesis on flints etc, and we passed through the hill fort and dropped down to the cars.

Panorama looking west across Wapley Hill fort
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Whilst the walk only came to 5.8 miles - it seemed a lot longer - oh, and did I mention the mud? Very many thanks to Margaret and Ian for taking us round this part of Herefordshire - hitherto unexplored - perhaps next summer (assuming it isn't cancelled) we can do this one again.


Walk 140 [9.25 miles] - Jay, Hopton Wood & Bucknell Hill

OS201 OS137 garmin

We'd planned to walk today from Knighton to Bucknell, but the weather prospects were looking so grim that Mike decided we'd do a local walk on the flat - "..not too far and mostly on the flat" he said....yeah...right!

So six of us set off from Bucknell, and we were pleased to welcome a new member Jayne into the group.

We walked across the fields through Adley Moor to Jay where we followed the road for a short distance before heading towards Heath House where we stopped for a coffee. So far we'd been lucky and the promised rain hadn't happened...yet.

Satisfied with his hedge pruning
Mike makes way for Geri to do her bit

We walked through to the main road then through the farm where we crossed the railway line and headed up into Hopton Wood.

"Well...what do you people want?"

It had started to spit with rain, but we were quite dry in the wood itself and, having emerged onto a forest track we headed downhill and stopped for lunch.

Looking towards Chapel Lawn from Bucknell Hill
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Whilst the walk only came to 5.8 miles - it seemed a lot longer - oh, and did I mention the mud? Very many thanks to Margaret and Ian for taking us round this part of Herefordshire - hitherto unexplored - perhaps next summer (assuming it isn't cancelled) we can do this one again.



Walk 139A (#43) [11.3 miles] - Adforton, Wigmore and Deerfold

OS201 OS137 garmin

It promised to be a lovely day and Mike, Beryl, Geri and I needed no second bidding, and we set off in the bright sunshine having parked at Adforton.

The view east from Wigmore Rolls

We climbed up a bit onto a farm track and headed towards Wigmore. There was a low mist in the vallety which gave a magical appearance to the countryside, and itwas enchanting to see Wigmore church standing alone emerging from the mist.

Wigmore church emerging from the mist

We soon arrived at Wigmore Castle and decided to explore.

Wigmore Castle comes into view

Now to explore the castle

Looking out from Wigmore Castle
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Wigmore Church

Having satisfied our curiosity we dropped down towards the church then headed off joining the Wigmore Loop path for a short distance before we headed south west towards Woodhampton and Oakleigh

We were heading west now to Deepmoore Farm where we turned right and headed north towards Birtley, eventually stopping for a well deserved lunch break near to Deerfold Cottage.

Looking down on Deerfold Cottage

The clouds had started to build and, as we finished our lunch a sharp breeze cooled us off and so we were ready to set off again. It was here that Mike decided to take a small short cut, climbing up the hill behind Deerfold Cottage. On the way we came across a flock of black faced sheep who, in one mad dash, charged down the hill to surround the stile we were heading for. Mike led the way drawing on some deep-hidden shepherding skills and moved them out of the way.

Guess where we wanted to go?
Right at the bottom where ALL the sheep had run to!

Finally we headed towards Lenton via a sunken lane running with water which acted as a boot cleaner and emerged onto a narrow lane which took us back to Adforton. 11.03 miles today and, by the time we arrived at the car, we knew we'd walked every inch! Thanks to Mike for working out this lovely walk.



Walk 139 [8.7 miles] - Chirbury, Offa's Dyke path and the River Camlad

OS216 OS137 garmin

We parked opposite the village hall in Chirbury and seven of us set off, initially along the A490 heading north before we turned west and headed across the fields to intercept Offa's Dyke Path. Ruth warned us that "There are a lot of stiles on this walk" - a bit of a contrast to our last (damp) walk in Mortimers forest which was entirely free of stiles - anyway, I started counting the stiles.

Chirbury church in the sunshine

This walk took place in the Vale of Montgomery, and we were reminded of this when the striking remains of Montgomery castle could be clearly seen from out coffee stop position over to our west. The weather was perfect for walking, and as we settled for our break, several of us found ourselves removing our top layers as the heat of he sun penetrated.

Coffee time on Offa's Dyke

We continued south along the dyke path then headed east across fields via Whitley and Timberth, and, before we rejoined the A490 we stopped for lunch after which we crossed a few more fields and headed along the main road until we branched off and dropped down to cross the River Camlad at Dingle Bridge.

One of the several stiles - this one on Offa's Dyke path

The Camlad forms part of the border between Wales and England in places, before flowing into the River Severn. It is notable for being the only river to cross from England into Wales and does so twice.

A quick 'shot' of Colin

The peaceful river Camlad

Another stile as we emerged out of the Camlad valley

We were now heading north in the peaceful wooded valley of the Camlad and eventually emerged to cross a few more fields and stiles before arriving back at Chirbury. An enjoyable walk in spite of the 32 stiles of which we had to clamber over 25.

8.7 miles in good company and great weather to boot. Thanks to Ruth for leading us round this one.

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