"A poor life this if, full of care, we have no time to stand and stare" - William Henry Davies
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An easy 3 mile walk, mostly flat with a very small stretch on a village road. It took me 1 1/2 hours but that included chasing dragonflies and butterflies up and down hedgerows to get the pictures you will see in the blog, so this is a generous estimate.
Park in front of the Red Lion on Wainlode Lane GL2 9LW where the walk begins and ends. Perfect for a pie and pint at the end.
This is a really lovely spot to sit outside and enjoy a meal but if the weather is not great the interior of the Red Lion is also very pleasant. You can take your dogs down to the water's edge along a path that leads down and away from these benches. This walk is not a riverside walk as it takes you up and away from the riverside but you get to enjoy the water at either end.
1.With your back to the pub facing the river, look to your left where you will see an opening into a field alongside the road. Go through the opening and head upwards on the track with the hedge on your right.
2.At the top of the field go through a metal gate set in some thick hedgerow. Follow this path, open fields on your left. (blackberries all along the route, so bring a bag!)
3.Another metal gate at the end of this path followed by a short, gentle climb.
4.Path opens out at the top into a field with views (we encountered a couple of sheep on our first visit that had escaped from the field next door so be vigilant if you have a dog). Head straight across this field towards the next metal gate.
5.Once through gate carry on straight up with hedge on your right, field on your left. Ignore a turning on your right and carry on straight.
6.You end up on a bridleway through a wood and just past a gate marked as private land the path opens into more fields. Carry on straight this time with hedge on your left, fields on your right..
7. The path quickly has options, splitting in two. Take the left turning walking slightly downhill, hedge on your left.
8.The path bears around to the right at the bottom and then meanders around to the left between a couple of wooden posts. Berries galore and a lovely view ahead.
9.Over the rise as the path heads down it splits in 2 again. Take the left hand turning.
10.The path heads down and bears right. A very pretty landscape over the hedge. As the path sweeps round to the right, keep your eyes peeled, because you are looking for a gap in the bramble hedge on your left. There is a kinda gate post shenanigan doodah that you step through into a clearing with a pond.
11.With the pond to your left, follow the path down the side of the field, hedge on your right. You should be able to see a gate/fence at the bottom where you will be exiting the field.
12.The gate has a yellow waymark sign and takes you across a wee bridge into another field. Follow the waymark sign straight ahead, hedge on your left, field on your right, heading towards a farm.
13.Before you reach the end of the field where you can see a metal gate, there is an opening on your left across another field. Go through the fap and follow the edge of this field, hedge on right until you get to another metal gate taking you out on to the road.
14.Turn right as you step out onto the road.
15.As the road bears around to the right you should see a footpath sign ahead of you that points to the left. You want to follow this, although you may want to just pop around to the right first to see the lovely village green of Bishops Norton - very pretty.
16.The footpath to the left takes you between a large barn on your right and properties on your left.
17.Straight down this path, over one stile alongside a metal gate. Ignore a stile on your left into fields and stick to the bridleway until it opens out into fields.
18.You could turn immediately left here and walk along the edge of the hedge, but as I like to walk along a waters edge wherever possible, I went straight ahead, aiming for a fenced bridge you can see beyond a line of trees. There is a ridge here along the side of a river.
19.At the point you reach the bridge, turn left and walk along the ridge with the river on your right.
20.Follow the edge of the river for a few hundred yards and keep your eye out on the left until you will see a gap in the trees and a track of sorts in the grass leading away from the river and through the trees. Head for the gap.
24.You will cross a concrete bridge of sorts. Head across and slightly right towards a metal gate. (If you came left earlier and followed the hedge this is where you would meet up). Go through (or around) this gate and bear immediately right.
25.Home straight now. Follow the bottom edge of this field, hedge on your right. Further along the path bears around to the left and then right so follow this, staying in the same field.
26.At the end of the field you will reach a stile through the hedge and into the caravan park. Follow the footpath sign which takes you past the office building and through the gates of the park and back to your car.