A cold day in Callow Hollow

Monday 12 Feb: The wind felt stronger (and colder) and there was more cloud than the forecast had suggested, but it was still a good day (sandwiched between some pretty awful days) for an outing. We thought there might have been some shelter in Callow Hollow – and there was, beside the little Oakleymill waterfall, sufficient for a lunch break. The flurry of snowflakes waited until we were moving again – then, as we reached the summit plateau, the sky cleared, and suddenly the world was colourful once more. Given good weather, the top of the Mynd is a great place to be.

View OS map on Streetmap http://www.streetmap.co.uk/map.srf?X=343480&Y=292591&A=Y&Z=120

Late October on the Mynd

Friday 27 October – a bright sunny day, far too good for staying at home, so we’ve packed a picnic… It’s very busy in Church Stretton, but we soon lose the crowds – the Pike provides a quick way up onto the hill, at the top corner of the golf course. At this point, we attempted to follow the path clearly shown on the OS map, which is a mistake, as it doesn’t exist. The clear, easy-to-walk path is 100 yards to our left, higher up the hill. At least its quiet along here…
We take our lunch break by the pond, near the top of Mott’s Road, before heading to the summit, then returning to the car by Townbrook Valley. It’s a bit quieter down here – and finally, we time the tea room to perfection… A good day out!

View OS map on Streetmap http://www.streetmap.co.uk/map.srf?X=343320&Y=295091&A=Y&Z=120

Church Stretton to Craven Arms

We’d thought of doing this by using the train, leaving the car at Craven Arms – then realised we could make the same journey free of charge using our bus passes… An interesting trip too – not entirely along the A49, the Minsterley Motors 435 service uses some very narrow lanes through Wistanstow and Bushmoor. Who’d be a bus driver in south-west Shropshire?

Starting out from the bus stop in Church Stretton, we aim for the top of Ragleth Hill for lunch. We’d have got there quicker if we’d spotted the waymark roundels at the foot of Poplar Drive. Later, after lunch, we find ourselves taking another little detour at Hatton Wood, where the correct path isn’t the obvious one. Soon mended. After the Apedale prairies, we’ve another short climb ahead of us, onto the Wenlock Edge beyond Wolverton. It’s a very enjoyable walk through the trees along here, before we drop down to Strefford and follow the Quinny brook, and later the Onny, back to Craven Arms. On the sound principle that these things come in threes, we take yet another wrong turning where, once again, the obvious route is the wrong one. By the time we arrive in Craven Arms, we’ve earned those ice creams. But what an enjoyable walk! Plenty of variety, and a perfect day for it.

View OS map on Streetmap http://www.streetmap.co.uk/map.srf?X=344805&Y=288161&A=Y&Z=126

The Mynd in January

Wednesday 4 Jan: “We’ll be out most of the day – you’ll have to amuse yourself…” No problem – it’s fine, bright and intermittently sunny. I’ll start from the Carding Mill Valley and work my round to Little Stretton, then up to the top beside Small Batch, and come back down Mott’s Road. There are one or two tricky bits on the path through the woods – soft and slippery – otherwise it’s a very pleasant route. The sun’s trying hard, and though it doesn’t always succeed, it provides me with some fine sunbeams to the south-west.


View OS map in Streetmap http://www.streetmap.co.uk/map.srf?X=343115&Y=293621&A=Y&Z=120&ax=367365&ay=301641



The Hope Bowdler hills are not the highest  in Shropshire, but later in the afternoon, at this time of year, they provide one of the most spectacular viewpoints for the border country. Beyond the numerous ridges, picked out in the golden light, our south-western horizon is filled by the broad table of Radnor Forest. We have to feel sorry for all the others – those who weren’t up there. We only saw three people, and one of them, a runner, didn’t really seem to be paying much attention (What is this life if, full of care…). There are one or two showers about; happily, they pass us by. It’s not all good – there’s a biting breeze, and the temperature is dropping quickly as the sun nears the horizon. We’re almost glad to get back to the car.


View OS map on Streetmap http://www.streetmap.co.uk/map.srf?X=347585&Y=293626&A=Y&Z=120

Gogbatch and the pond

It’s cold on the Mynd this afternoon – the wind’s in the north-east, biting after a few spots of rain. We’re walking from Gogbatch up to the pond on the Portway, a very pleasant and easy ascent. The forecast had suggested brighter conditions, which we begin to enjoy after the first mile or so. The sun’s low in the sky now – the clocks will soon be going back – and it’s dropping noticeably as the afternoon progresses. The light is everything it wasn’t during the summer months – warm in colour and directional, picking out the detail in the landscape like a spotlight. Weather permitting – and today it did – this is a great time to be out on the hills.

View OS map on Streetmap http://www.streetmap.co.uk/map.srf?X=344442&Y=296456&A=Y&Z=120