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!

Monday, June 29, 2015

Deene and Deenethorpe Airfield Circular

Led by Tommy. Ten of us. Around 7 miles. Warm and sunny.

We set off from Deene village hall, turning left along the road towards the church, then taking the path to St Peter's church. This was the parish church for Deene and Deenethorpe, and the Brudenaell family church, but is now looked after by the Churches Conservation Trust.  It is not often open, but today we were able to look inside.
The ceiling over the chancel is splendid.
The walls too.
There are various carved heads.
We continued through the churchyard and past the lake and weir. Plenty of water lilies coming out.
Then I put the camera away and concentrated on walking. 

In the long grass on the path we saw several common spotted orchids today.

There were a few butterflies around today, and we also saw a young deer, which had probably been resting in the long grass. I hope it settled again and that its mother found it. Of course my camera was tucked away out of reach at the time.

Map and details

Friday, June 19, 2015

Calshot to Fawley via Ashlett Creek and back.

A walk leaflet produced by New Forest National Park Authority can be downloaded or read here.

Walked 19 June 2015. Just under six miles.

I hadn't thought of walking in this area, since Fawley is well known for its refinery and the power station, which was closed in 2013. Pergegrine falcons are now said to nest in the towers, though we saw none.  We did hear a cuckoo calling - our first one this year for both of us. Late, very late.
A good cup of coffee and a shared chunk of cake set us up for the walk.
The salt marshes
The Isle of Wight Ferries pass from time to time.
The closed power station
A very convenient bench for vital contemplation.
A tall ship chugging by.
A couple of horses and a foal grazing near the power station fence.
This looks likely to produce masses of blackberries later this year.
Sea, sky and salt marsh.
Ashlett tide mill, now the home of the local sailing club.
This is where we had lunch.

Fawley church.
Country lane, foxgloves and power station chimney
Approaching Calshot on the return journey.

We walked from Calshot to Fawley, added a mini-meander around Fawley, and then returned to Calshot - between five and six miles in all, on a very warm sunny day. We paused for coffee at the Bluebird cafe before we began to walk, and had a baguette and salad at the Jolly Sailor pub.

Oyster catchers and swallows were in evidence, and the occasional blue butterfly. When we were almost back we spotted a lesser egret fishing nearby. As it flew off we could see its yellow feet.

Map track

Around Lyndhurst

I thought I'd try to walk part of the circular walk which we did in November 2013, but this time in reverse.
Mostly ok, apart from one closed footpath, and a wander off the track near Lyndhurst Hill - which is full of trees and many paths! Between six and seven miles in all. Fine weather, mostly dry underfoot - even the boggy bits were passable.
The pathway near the Waterloo Arms
plants in a wall
The beauty of alien invaders
The path between Pikes Hill and Emery Down

Lots of ponies around Emery Down
The path near Lyndhurst Hill

The Oak Inn at Bank

Bank post box.

Map to follow later. 

Thursday, June 18, 2015

Corfe Castle to Nine Barrow Down

Wednesday 17 June 2015 , along the Purbeck Way.
Around a seven mile walk on a sunny afternoon. Our original intention was to climb East Hill, but the weather and the path were altogether too good to refuse. 

From Corfe Castle's NT car park turn left and take second road on left - Sandy Hill Lane.
On the left just after turn to railway station is a permissive path to East Hill.
it's very steep, and most of the gradient is steps. 
There is also a gentler track which meets this one just before the first radio mast, but misses out East Hill with its fine views of the Castle.

At the top of the steps, head for the top of the ridge, following signs to Rollington Hill.
Fabulous views over to the north, over Poole harbour and Wareham Channel.

The path continues along the ridge, going slightly south of east.
It's a bridleway too.

The prevailing winds are westerlies.

We followed it for about three and a half miles to the point where it begins the descent to the road to Ullwell and Swanage. The track veers right, there's a radio mast ahead, and a toppled trig point
close by.

We retraced our footsteps with a ten yard or so detour to see a bee orchid. A couple had told us where this was.

most of the walk was on wonderful springy grassland - so much so that I took my shoes off for a short distance.
On the way back the clouds were creating spooky effects around the castle.

Tuesday, June 16, 2015

New Forest - Lyndhurst to Matley Wood

A short walk on Monday 15 June. Drizzle at first, ending up warm and dry with hints of sun.

From the town, past Boltons Bench and the cemetery full of magnificent alien, but comtrolled invaders, and on along heathland paths to Matley Wood campsite, then back.

Lots of donkeys, a few ponies and cattle as well as humans! 

Thursday, June 11, 2015

Thorpe Langton, Caudle and more

Thu, 2015 Jun 11 9:27 AM BST. With Maureen and Gordon. One of the warmest and pleasantest days this year. Dry underfoot. Just over 8 miles.
This walk is almost the same as one from last year - but we stayed on the Midshires Way road to Welham this time instead of taking the footpath near Churchfield House farm. I reckon this is shorter by about half a mile.

We turn right from the main road, just past the pub, downhill past the car park, Caudles Cottage and a farmyard, and the road becomes a track 'unsuitable for motors'. 
Just before the ford we take the path on the right hand side, which takes us to a stile, and Leics round signpost. Over the stile and into a long narrow field of brown cows. The path starts to climb gently towards some trees. All is easy to follow, with Leicestershire's fine yellow posts and Leics Round way markers. We keep the hedge on our left as we climb to the trig point - a short,steepish (for us) start to today's walk.
View from the Caudle

Almost there - a steepish start to the walk

The trig point - 147 m
From the trig point we head to the next hedge and turn left, with hedge on our right and follow bridleway signs (blue arrows). We cross through the hedge and then keep it on our left until we come to a gate. From here the path cuts across a field of crops, and leads easily downhill to the unsurfaced road towards Stonton Wyville . At the crossroads we go straight ahead to the small village, then turn right almost opposite the church. We ignore a footpath off to our left.
After a short distance the road bends left, and we soon turn off this to our right, following a well-marked footpath alongside a field or two, through a hedge and across another field for a mile or so to reach Glooston.
Open bell tower at Glooston
We take an early break at Glooston, less than halfway round, but I need my coffee. Very tempting to sit and linger in the warmth of the sun today.
Window decorations at Glooston

Ancient yew tree
 Onwards and downhill slightly to find the minor road to Cranoe - past the Old Barn Inn, turn right at the junction and go straight ahead at the crossroads.The road climbs up before descending into Cranoe, past its perched church. We left the Leicestershire Round at Cranoe.
Cranoe church
 I put a bit too much road-walking in today. We follow the road - a minor one and part of the Midshires Way - all the way to Welham, a good two miles.
View from Midshires Way between Cranoe and Welham
 At Welham we turn right past the Old Red Lion, ignore a road junction to our left, pass the church and walk along Bowden Lane. This is another quiet road, and goes past a farm, and the Welham stud. Soon after crossing a bridge over a brook, and then reaching the fishing lake, we take a bridleway through trees to the right.
New Forest ponies at Welham stud, Bowden Lane

Bridleway towards Thorpe Langton
The trees continue for some time, then the bridleway goes along the edge of a cultivated field and two meadows with cattle before it reaches the road between Great Bowden and Thorpe Langton. We turn right and follow the road into the village to collect the car.

Not a lot in the way of wildlife today - a pheasant, some swallows, a red kite, the odd crow. A couple of butterflies - a brimstone and one I'm not sure of, and didn't photograph. 
Map and details