DATE                                         09.05.06

DISTANCE                                6.4 MILES

WEATHER                               BRIGHT AND SUNNY



After a early morning mad dash around the house doing all my “good boy jobs” I found that I still had the rest of the day to myself , great time to get my walking kit sorted and make the most of my free time and get out someplace , gear was quickly sorted and thrown into the car , a quick stop at the sarnie shop for dinner (roast beef sarnie ) and a rather tasty slice of cake and I was off heading along the road towards the Northumberland National Park , at this point I have to be honest and say that I hadn’t a clue where I was heading , I figured that something would pop into my head and things would happen or I would continue driving until I a) ran out of petrol or b) ran out of road anyhow somehow I found myself driving past the turn off for Alwinton , then Ingraham valley , then before I knew it I past the turn off for Langlee valley . wooler  whizzed past then without even thinking about it I was heading up the small road to the car park at Hethpool, well that’s sorted .

Time to slow down and think, gear was sorted , coffee was made and drunk and suddenly it hit me ….time to chill out a bit …and what a place to do it , suddenly I felt as if I didn’t have a care in the world , the sun was out , the sky was blue , birds where singing and I could almost feel the grass growing , sitting on the grass looking all around life and stuff is good , sometimes I forget how good it is just to sit down in a place like this and simply take five minutes out and just breath ………….how did I forget about this ? I think half the problem is that I / we spend our lives tear arseing about doing every thing we can trying to make money / get jobs done trying to free time up and when we do we forget why we are doing it . it’s been bugging me for sometime now .how do I slow things down a bit and when I say things I mean my life . (Something I’m still working on ten years later and still no closer to any answer).

Any way coffee was drunk, gear sorted and off I went, determined not to lose the good laid back feeling that I had.  Without even thinking about where I was walking I just seemed to know that I would walk along the valley and see where I would end up when  I was treated to the sight of half a dozen deer who decided to jump over a fence so they could get at the “greener grass” on the other side . I remembered that I had left my new camera at home because the case had broken and cussed myself for not getting a new one sooner , this was the one reason that I had got a DSLR so I could get better photos of any wildlife . still nothing I can do about it now , after watching them for a while it was time to  cut into the trees at  Sinkside hill and walk along the forestry track to the remote farm at Trowupburn , which is one of those farms that look like they belong in a oil painting , from there I knew that I would be walking up a grassy path up to the top of Great Hetha  (343meters ) I have been up here before but this time my mood , weather and the much easer route made it so much easer to get to the top , naturally I stopped to catch my breath and take a few photos on the way up , but it was so much easer than the first time I came up here. There is an old age Hill fort up here and it’s possible to make out the stone outer rings (or I think that’s what they are) and the views are well worth the effort. From there I cut back down via Little Hetha which also had its own hill fort (much smaller) and from there dropped down to the car park, A number of things where going through my head at the moment, my good mood, the beautiful valley, the bright weather when I suddenly found myself walking past my car and heading down the road towards Hethpool, from there I cut down along a footpath down towards the Collage burn , now walking along here is a pure joy it’s lovley , then just to make my day I spotted a slow worm , a few photos where taken then I was off towards Hethpool Linn (small waterfall) , This spot must go down as one of those hidden Gems that are dotted about the National Park , after a few more photos and a well deserved sit down to finish my Coffee off it was time to head back , I walked about 6.4  miles all easy and relaxed with about 1448 ft of the ups and downs , but today it wasn’t about the distance it was all about just chilling out.

A few photos

 Looking back at the car park


Looking along the valley, still a bit hazy but good non the less


Looking down at the Collage Burn


Looking back towards the Torr’s


Deer grazing in the sheep field


Looking up towards Wester Torr


Wild primroses growing in the forest at Sinkside Hill


On the forestry track looking at Great Hetha


However the track takes me in the opposite direction for a while


 Looking down at the Trowupburn running along the base of Great Hetha


The farm at Trowupburn, the first time I got this view I just went “wow”


Approaching the farm looking up at Great Hetha

At the farm looking towards Saughieside Hill (it would be a few years before I got up there)


 Looking back at Sinkside hill

Heading up, one of many breaths breaks looking back


Still heading up, a very easy grassy quad bike track to follow


Another breath break again looking back down towards Trowupburn


Last look back


Made it, the stone Cairn


Showing some of the old stone wall (I think)


Looking down towards the car park at Hethpool


Heading down, looking back up at the outer wall

Now on Little Hetha looking towards the car park


Looking back towards Great Hetha


Looking towards Hethpool and the “Bell” in the distance


Some of the new locals making the most of the weather


Now approaching the Collage Burn


The overflow from the small lake / pond at Hethpool




Same again


On the footbridge looking upstream on the Collage Burn


Looking downstream towards Hethpool Linn


A couple of the burn


The Linn


The deep pool


Looking up towards the footbridge


Last couple


The Bell


Looking towards Great Hetha


Last look.


Day after thoughts , today was one of those walks that caused me no problems what so ever , I didn’t have any sore spots , didn’t ache in the morning , in fact today was one of those special walks that you don’t want the day to end , I came home feeling so much more relaxed than when I set off , yes a good day .thank you


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