Thu, 2014 Mar 20 9:40 AM GMT
Led by Barry, with me, Maureen and Gordon. Flattish, with several small woodland areas. Muddy in the woods. Very windy at times, but dry. Just over 8 miles.
You don't need both OS Explorer maps either 227 or 235 will do fine- the area covered is on both.
We leave Ailsworth taking the footpath just inside the village boundary, along a flat field towards the A47, an obstacle that has to be crossed twice during this walk. On the other side of the road our path leads more or less north and into Castor Hanglands*, continuing through the nature reserve including Ailsworth Heath. No horses in evidence today, and we spot little in the way of wildlife. Four gallumphing people tend to put the critters off.
*"Hanglands" a definition.
When gorse is out of bloom . . .
At the other side of the nature reserve we turn right, outside the woods and walk as far as the minor road. We could have continued across the road, but instead walk along to the junction, turn right and take the bridleway to our right, parallel to the original road.
We walk by some more woodland, and follow the path as it zigzags and curves a bit towards Foster's Coppice.
|Wise walkers check maps meticulously|
|The sun almost comes out, and I try to get the ISO numbers right to show it|
We walk across an exposed part of the path, and find a shelter and seat - well, a large fallen tree - in Burmer Wood.
|I hope this isn't some awful warning|
|We have to fight the wind today|
It marks the height above (sea level?) as 113.40 ft. On the map there's a nearby point at 36 meters so we guess that's more or less it. We turn right along the track marked as Cow Lane. This takes us to the A47 again, and continues after we cross the road. We take the right hand fork, as it looks a little drier - Clay Lane according to the map. Not far now and we're in Castor.
|Village green in full spring dress|
|The Farmers' Cross - replacing the stump of the medieval cross, reputed to have been destroyed by Cromwell.|
Map and details