and occasionally rides a bike.
A word of warning. The walk descriptions are not detailed enough to guide you - please take a map. The batteries never run out, and you always have a signal. Oh, And don't take left or right as gospel!

Friday, May 27, 2011

Fineshade Woods - Mill Wood trail

Friday 27 May 2011, with Marta.    5 miles - one and half hours approx, quite a lot of it at 4 miles per hour.

We just followed the way marks for the Mill Wood trail, including the steep down and up through the woods.Still windy, no rain, a good stride.
After consulting the map, I see that we missed the half-mile detour through Mill Wood itself  - I blame the poor signing!

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Hallaton - Slawston - Cranoe - Keythorpe Lakes Farm - Hallaton

Thursday 26 May . just under 2 hours and a half walking time - around 8 miles. Up to 600 feet. With Eddie and Barry. A 12 stile walk. 

Opposite the village centre with the war memorial and butter cross, a path leads through an archway between the houses.  You cross a footbridge and make your way up 'Hare Pie Bank',  across the track used on Easter Monday by the Hare Pie and bottle-kickers.  Continue along the path, passing the splendour of Hallaton Manor Rest Home on your right.  Across two fields and a stream, then another field into Slawston.

Turn right and walk along the main street until another footpath is marked to the left.Across the corner of the first field, then along the edge, a (long) zig-zag round two edges of the next field, through a hedge on the left and over a plank bridge, straight on then right until you reach the road to Cranoe.
At Cranoe Church


Where's the Pink Panther, then?
 A few hundred yards into the village, turn right up the hill to the church, and a few yards past it, there is a footpath sign on the right hand side of the road. Take the path up the hill and follow the wide ridge along until you reach a crossing of tracks, with signposts.  Don't turn right - this takes you directly to Hallaton down a quiet road/track.   Instead follow the Midshires Way, past Keythorpe Lodge Farm, then downhill to Keythorpe Lakes - a large dairy farm.  When you see the farmhouse turn sharp left and follow the bridleway, and then the path.  You climb gently at first, then more steeply to Hallaton Spinneys and Moor Hill Spinneys up to about 150 metres.
To you right is Issets' Lodge, a huge new house,  with a mysterious array of poles.  Are they lights, mini solar panels,  or beacons to guide a private plane down?

From the top you walk gently descending the ridge, with wide views over rural Leicestershire, down towards Hallaton.  Ignore any turn to the left,  emerging opposite the Fox Inn and its pond. Just as we arrived a heron flew off.  Walk through the village, past a pump, and ? village lock up, back to the central green and Buttercross.

Monday, May 23, 2011

Rutland Water ( Whitwell) to Exton, Fort Henry and back

Monday 23 May 2011. With Eddie and Barry O. Just under 10 miles, about 3 hours. Weather conditions:  strong winds! 

From Whitwell car park, out along Church Lane in Whitwell, across the main road (A606), through the Noel Arms car park, along the Viking Way, waymarked by a tiny viking helmet.  Through a stile into a field, labelled Bull in Field - though there was none. Stile at other end.  Carry on up hill, over another stile (?). The path is clearly marked as it climbs gradually then descends towards Exton.  You reach a minor road which you cross, then continue straight ahead for a short distance before turning right (leaving the Viking Way). Follow the footpath slightly to the right down towards a stream. The stream is on your right.   Follow the path across a footbridge, and keep the stream on your left until you cross another footbridge. The path climbs briefly and continues west, passing Cuckoo Farm a little way off.  It curves south towards the minor road which we crossed earlier.  Less than half a mile of road walking, takes us round a right hand right-angled bend
and on to Horn Mill and the Trout Hatchery.  Just before this, take the footpath to the left, marked Footpath to Fort Henry and Greetham.
Follow the path over another stile, and over a stream towards the private woodlands. The path hugs the edge of the woods, then make for Lower Lake. Follow the path until you reach the metalled road. Turn right, then take the footpath to Greetham on the left.  This passes Fort Henry and the lake, covered with water lilies in May - with an artificial heron looking out for the fish.

From the lake we walked along the path through a wooded area, until we reached steps leading up to a track.  At this point there is a path more or less straight on leading to Greetham across the golf course. Instead of following that we turned left, then slightly right along a path which has been filled in with chunks of stone - hard underfoot.  This goes directly east for almost a mile, then turns left and shortly over a stile into a field where we should once again beware of a (non-existent, again) bull.  At the other end of the field, turn right and follow the Viking Way signs for a fair distance, past the R.C Cemetery and the Estate offices into the village of Exton.

These animals can bite!
  Follow the main road through, passing Pudding Bag Lane, the old school, avoiding the pub and green.  You rejoin the minor road and cross it before retracing the route we followed at the beginning of the walk, up the incline, down to the Noel Arms in Whitwell, along Church Lane to the Whitwell car park.  For the sake of mileage, and the ritual that's in it, we went to the Water and dipped fingers in.


There is a slightly longer (11 mile)  walk on Ken Brockway's Walking Englishman website, which covers some of the same ground, though not all.

Monday, May 16, 2011

Fermyn Woods circular taking in Lyveden

Monday 16 May 2011.  Mel, Norma, Eddie, Gordon, Barry, Barry and Vera,  Ian and Carole, Terry, Maureen, Jill, Ken, me and another couple.
Turned out to be just or not quite under ten miles. Walking time just under 3 hours.

We set off from Fermyn Woods Skylark cafĂ© and walked round the edge of the play area, then followed the edge of the woods, rather than walk inside.  From the corner of Tresham Coppice (according to map) the path stops hugging the woods and leaves it slightly on the left.  Continue approx half a mile . Assart's Coppice.  There is a view of Lyveden New Bield at this point poking out from behind the trees, but we turned right along a wider track rather than make for this.
We took a grassy path which went straight ahead, instead of following the main track  Compass bearing perhaps?
Down through Titchmarsh wood, following a path close to the edge which took us almost to Sudborough.  At the end of the wood we turned left(973823)  At 994824 we joined a track going NW , then grid 000833 turned NE and on to a path through fields near Aldwincle Lodge.  Then towards Wadenhoe Gt Wood Wadfenhoe Little wood and up a slight incline through Lilford Wood heading towards Lyveden New Bield.
Just before the hedge we turned left  taking the path which joined the point where we turned right earlier.
Then retraced footsteps to Skylark Cafe for lunch.