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Walk 186 [6.8 miles] - Downton circular

OS201 OS137 garmin

11 of us set off from Stonebrook Coppice on a gin clear morning; bright sunshine and clear blue sky with a sharp frost making an iced topping to the shaded areas.

Getting ready

The sun slanting through the trees on the Downton Estate

Frosty underfoot as we headed away from the Teme

Then there was the long and steady climb up Weston Hill where Geri was reunited with yet another lost glove!

A herd of deer seemingly unconcerned by our presence

A mistletoe smothered tree at Snead Vallets Farm

We headed along the road for a short distance and clambered over our first slippery stile at The Brakes, and headed across the field to Forge Cottage. Then briefly along the road near Bringewood House after which we followed the Teme for a while until we turned north and crossed the A4113 at Decoy Cottage. At Wetmore Cottage we encountered our first and only muddy/boggy area and shortly afterwards we stopped in a convenient field for a coffee.

Upper Pool near Decoy Cottage

Coffee time!

A pheasant quite unbothered by us at Stubbs Coppice

We continued along Wetmore Lane and after a brief excursion along the (slippery) road turned right and headed up the Herefordshiere Trail at Stubbs Coppice. At the top we turned left passing Mocktree Farm and then into a field where we had our lunch.

We made a gentle descent and entered the wilderness at Fiddler's Elbow - having no idea where the path was we followed the clearest and least overgrown path which took us generally in the right direction, emerging onto the A4113 and then throught a hedge where we headed downhill to Gravel Farm.

Heading down towards Gravel Farm

It was then just a short walk back to the cars. Many thanks to Ruth and the ever alert Mary for finding this delightful walk and for leading us today.


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