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!

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Southey Woods, Castor Hanglands

Led by me, with Maureen and Gordon. Grey, very occasional light drizzle, a cool wind, but ideal temperature for walking. Less muddy than usual in the woods. Just over 10 miles.

Similar to this walk August 23rd and this walk August 30th
Ufford church, at 44 metres above sea level, is one of the highest points in the area

Another slight variation on this walk. We started at the Willow Brook Farm Shop, and took the footpath just across the road heading more or less north-east.  The path leads across a reclaimed landfill site with warning 'no smoking notices'.
 Then it continues along the side of a wood. At the corner the path should go diagonally across a field to the minor road, but we walked along the edge and then for a short distance along the road. Freshly ploughed fields are hard work until the paths have been made good.

We turned left at the point where the path meets a bridleway at the junction with the road. We walked west along the bridleway, past a pond and a few trees until we reached Langley Bush Road.  Here we turned right and walked north along the road as far as the end of Hilly Wood.
We turned left again (north west approximately), following a bridleway to High Field Road.   We should have turned left here (see garmin trace)  and walked south east as far as the second block of woodland, called Jubilee Wood.  A right turn just south of west took us to the path into Ufford, where we turned left and soon uphill, past the hall and the church.
We walked passed Hillside Close on the edge of the village, and another 400 yards later, turned right on to the track known as 'the drift' .  We ignored the inviting seat here, and walked about half a mile south to the gate leading into Southey Wood.  We followed the main waymarked path until after another mile we had a break at the well-placed picnic tables.
The tiniest bit chilly today!
After that it was straight past the car park and over the road to the track towards Upton.  This leads down hill past the church and we chose to follow the road through the village, past a row of thatched cottages and some houses, then turned left past Model Farm, before heading left along a bridleway marked on the map as Blind Lane.  We met a man trotting on a horse along this section. 
At the end of Blind Lane there are three chopped tree trunks with the letter A,S,W scratch-carved into them - useful seats, but we resisted the temptation this time, and followed a path diagonally across the corner of a small field through some woodland and out onto a shady path heading east. This leads on to the open fields, now harvested, with the two improvised horse-jumps. See this post.

We carried on towards the east, until we met the north-south path, and turned left and north towards the Castor Hanglands nature reserve. 
The main path through the reserve is clear and easy to follow.  Today it was noticeably less muddy than it has been.  Not much visible wildlife, but we did meet these horses.

We carried on through the reserve and then took the permissive path to the farm shop and cafe, where we stopped for lunch. 

map and details


Roy said...

Less mud in Castor H, that makes a pleasant change Alison. Its been nothing else there this summer. That small white horse is a character, believing I had something for it in my camera bag, it followed me across the open ground to the gate.

aliqot said...

I expect today's rain will "improve" the mud situation! I love seeing the horses there.