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!

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

NR 8 - Nobottle to Church Brampton via Harlestone

Tue, 20 May 2014 10:09  BST
With Marta. Parked at Harlestone.
Walked NR to Nobottle and returned via different path. Then Harlestone to Ch Brampton, there and back on NR. Fine, warm, not much sun. My other device tells me 10.3 miles!

With Marta. We parked at Harlestone - a spread out village consisting of Harlestone, Lower Harlestone and Upper Harlestone. The section near the church has a dead end access road with no parking unless you're visiting the school or church.
We should have  turned left, south into the village - there's a pub called The Fox and Hounds, implausibly sporting a sign showing a fox as Master of the Hunt, surrounded by hounds.  
We found a spot to park near a footpath and a bridleway, clearly much used by local dog-walkers, and indeed dogless walkers.
This walk followed a  slightly different pattern from usual, as we decided to leave coffee and the like at the car, to pick up for a break part way through the walk. Gives us flexibility if we're not up to finishing too!  And a lighter pack to carry.

We take the bridleway through a gate with a wooden latch. Soon we're in woodland and the scent of wild garlic takes me back to childhood!  Damp woodland earth and wild garlic - close rivals to freshly cut grass and honeysuckle!  This part is rather like a magical fairy realm as we walk a large house with a lovely garden, and another house hidden away. It feels as though we've slipped back a century or two, apart from seeing the parked cars.

When the trees stop we turn left following a narrow track towards the area with the church.
A well?

Lots of wild garlic
Then we take a footpath left again into the wood emerging on a track through Northampton Golf Course with its lake and balustrade.

We follow a path to the church, and on past the village hall, and further to Yew Tree Farm.

The NR signs are clear, and we have no real problem staying on track. It's also part of the Midshires Way.
The grass is greener
On the ground paths are clear, either alongside hedges, or through fields of crops.
We walk southwest towards Nobottle. We take a  quick break for water and an orange before four hundred or so yards of road walking. It's not too busy, and there is a bit of a grass verge, but we're pleased to see the bridleway sign on our left, shortly after we pass Nobottle House on our right.
We go alongside a field and reach a small spinney, where we turn to the right, then left along side hedges and back towards Upper Harlestone. We follow the road to the right, then turn left and walk back to the car - and coffee. 5 miles done so far.
The next section is two and half miles or so out to Church Brampton. We come back the same (shortest) way.
We walk the bridleway through the garlic woods for the second time, of three today.  Instead of turning left we carry on after the woods, by some mounds and hollows, and across the road near the pub. It's quite busy for a minor road.
We turn right and walk uphill until we se the bridleway sign, with tiny NR stickers on.
We turn left, slightly north of east, along a track, then right through a fields of green barley.
The path goes downhill to the railway, and we follow it under a bridge, and the  uphill into woodland - classic England in spring with sunlight through the trees, bluebells and pink campion, and a damp earth path. It's the edge of Fox Covert.

We come out of the woods to be met by warning signs about flying golf balls and the need to keep to the path. Northamptonshire County Golf Club.  
We follow the path over a couple of fairways, then it turns left. This track goes past the clubhouse and then along Golf Lane, land of huge houses and customized car plates. We find a handy seat by a bus stop - have a short foray in search of a shop, find none, and resort to emergency cereal bars before retracing the route back to the car - all in all between 10 and 11 miles.

Map and details


Ida Jones said...

You've had another interesting day walking! The forest sounds lovely and those hillocks - big moles in that area! lol

aliqot said...

Yes, it's an intriguing part of the county.