DATE                        16.04.17

DISTANCE               7.14 MILES

WEATHER              DULL AND GREY TO START WITH THEN WET

START / FINISH     ROADSIDE PARKING SEE MAP

 Once again I found myself in the good position of having a day off work (a well-deserved day off I might add) and nowhere to go, so it was time to have a mooch around on the net to see if any group walks had been posted, luckily one group had posted up a wander around Devils water so that seemed to fit in with my plans (I have to say up to this point I had no plans) so that was it a quick e mail to my long suffering walking buddy the lovely Edwina and another to the walking Dude’s from the https://www.meetup.com/Northumberland-Walking-Group/events/238410527/ walking group who was hosting the walk and that was it all sorted .

Bob dog naturally volunteered himself to go along as long as I got his roast beef and tasty snacks, (like I would forget), I did think about getting Flynn and Munchy dog to come as well but it’s still a bit on the cool side for them and decided that I would wait for a really nice warm day before I dragged them out for the day.

And so early the next morning (well not to early) we (Edwina, Bob and myself) where off heading off towards Dukesfield Arches and Devils Water which is near Hexham, or so I believe, I have had the odd wander around Hexham but never down this area so I was looking forward to it, that was if we could find the meet up place. Weather wise it was grey and overcast with rain forecast for later on in the afternoon, hopefully we should be finished by then, but it was a reminder that I have been neglecting my duties with regards to the weather gods and made a mental note that I will have to do some serious sniveling to them if I want to stay dry, but too late to do anything about it now.

With some serious navigating and a few interruptions / arguments from Tom Tom we finally pulled up at what looked like the starting point and much to our delight we found that someone (who knew where they were supposed to be) was there, then over the next ten minutes or so the rest of the gang turned up, introductions were made, gear was sorted and off we went. Seeing as it was Easter our walk leader for the day Margaret treated us all to a tasty Easter egg , which was very quickly woofed down ……Thanks Margaret .

Unfortunately I didn’t really get to know any of the place names or anything (which is quite unusual for me normally my sense of direction and natural nosiness means that I glean quite a bit of info about the area that I am walking in but today I can honestly say that I lost all sense of direction and at one point I thought that we was heading in a different direction and it wasn’t till I saw the river flowing that I got some sense of direction again) …..very strange as I always pride myself that I know exactly where I am at all times (may be old age is catching up with me)  so if you want any info you will have to follow the route on the map above apart from the Dukesfield Smelter which was our first stopping point (it was only a few hundred meters from the car), I did promise myself that at the end of the walk we would return here for a more proper mooch around , but when the time came it was really throwing it down and after being out in the wet weather for the last few hours we decided to give it a miss , but there is always another day .

Our route (see map) took in a mixture of riverside paths, woodland, grassy fields and the odd short wander along small B type roads, all very easy walking, if it wasn’t for the fact the rain had started and it was just getting heaver and heaver I would have taken a few more photos and mooched around more, Bob dog disgraced himself when I put his Barbour coat on, & he let it be known he didn’t like it by rolling in almost anything that looked and smelt disgusting but seeing as he had his winter coat cut off only the day before and looked rather bald the last thing I wanted was for him to get cold and wet so I had no choice  , but he wasn’t impressed and then whilst I wasn’t watching he snuck away and rolled it what I think was sheep’s after birth covering his jacket , fortunately it was all on the wax coat and so I could wipe the worst off on the wet grass and put it in an empty plastic bag carefully tying it up as it stunk before it went into my rucksack . Bob didn’t seemed bothered at all in fact he had a smug look on his face and believe it or not he didn’t roll on anything after that , likewise he didn’t seemed to be bothered by the falling rain .

Our route was just over seven miles and even though the weather was pants I did enjoy it , and I will return to this area and have a few more walks and explore the area in much more detail as it seemed to be teaming with footpaths , as normal a few photos , enjoy :-

Taken right at the start looking at the bridge where we parked up

 

Approaching Dukesfield Mill info board

First sighting of these old ruins

 

A few more, it was my plan to have a proper mooch round after the walk but due to the weather I called it off (I am such a wimp at times)

 

Nope haven’t a clue

Old stone wheel

Looking onto the fields with the young lambs

Up close

Edwina feeling happy

 

Nosey Horse

The views

Heading into some woods (sorry haven’t got a clue about name or anything)

 

Looking at the river / stream sorry I haven’t got a clue as to its name

 

Edwina showing off her goodies (very tasty nom nom)

 

Walking group photo taken at lunch time (not my photo)

 

Lunch spot by the river

 

With a few hungry locals

 

Old ruin (there is quite a few of these dotted around this area)

 

A couple of photos as we make our way along the river

Big Ants nest up close

 

Taken from a safe distance, there was quite a few of these nests in one section of the forest

 

Heading back along (a different river now?) a few photos

 

Looking down towards the wild garlic plants (we are a bit early to see them at their best)

 

Old stone bridge? Long gone?

 

Heading into the scary trees

And it’s starting to rain

 

A few more as we make our way along (sorry haven’t got as clue where we are now)

Smile taken from the other side of the river

 

Last few photos: - heading back

 

 

Day after thoughts.

Time to be honest, I enjoyed this walk today it was after all in a new area, but I didn’t like the fact that I couldn’t place where we was all the time, this is something totally alien for me as I always know exactly where I am to the nearest 220 miles (just joking) of course I had my GPS on and in the rucksack and I was in a group so it wasn’t a problem. I also have quite a few stumbles (about 6 or so), I expect to have the odd stumble when I am out and about but not that many, looking for answers all I can think of is my kx06 knee wasn’t working as it should, I know it’s literally on its last legs and my busa has decided to reappear so maybe I wasn’t pushing back as hard as I should have to prevent any pressure going on it .I don’t know but after one stumble even Edwina said it didn’t look like the knee was going all the way back quick enough …………something to keep an eye on .

Home gear sorted, Bob dog bathed (that will teach him to roll in smelly stuff) no sore spots on my stump but the busa has come back with a vengeance ……o joy!!!.

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