DISTANCE 4.2 MILES
WEATHER DAMP AND WINDY
START / FINISH SEE MAP
The crags at Thrunton
After my wander along a small section of Salters road the day before I was feeling good, very good to be precise, I had gone to bed feeling very happy and woke up with that “II must get out someplace for a walk today feeling”, the only trouble was the weather, dull, grey, wet & windy again but hell that really doesn’t really matter, where to go that was the only problem.
Over breakfast I informed my long suffering better half that I wanted to get out someplace, but wasn’t sure where, as the weather wasn’t looking good, and for once in her life she came up with a really good suggestion, why don’t I go back to Thrunton woods and explore that track that I found some time ago that looks like it goes up to the top of the crags.
I was gobsmacked why didn’t I think of that , the forest or should I say the trees will give me shelter from the worst of the wind , the forestry track (mostly) are well drained so the amount of rainfall we have been having shouldn’t make that much impact on them and ………….I like the area , yes I know to most people its just a boring forest but to me it’s a very special place , its where I first came when I started to learn to walk again , and with every step I feel I got a little bit of my life back . And it’s quite local for me so it doesn’t involve a long car drive. Pushing my luck a bit I did ask Yvonne if she wanted to join me today , but after seeing her look out the window I knew the answer , I think that my better half Yvonne is a bit of a warm weather walker .
So that was it, I would head off to Thrunton woods and have a mooch about. There are several routes that head up to the crags, all very steep and rocky in places and a little bit out of my league at the moment but by using this route I should be able to get to the top missing all the steep / rocky bits out, of course it would be longer but that didn’t matter yep a good plan.
Gear was sorted (actually I always sort it out when I get back from my last trip) but it sounds good, in reality all I have to do is pack food and drink and 9 times out of 10 I tend to stop off at the local sarnie shop and get my food made up fresh (why am I telling you all this?) ………..right getting back to the walk,
I parked up in the small lay by near the radio / telephone? mast right at the start of Thrunton woods, there is enough parking for 4 or so cars, gear was sorted and off I went, the first part of this walk involved a short walk down the road to the first forestry track that heads into the forest, I noted that there was plenty of off road parking right by the gate, so in future I will park here and save myself the small walk down the road , its not like the road is busy or anything its only the access road to the main car park further along down the road but I don’t really like walking on metallic roads .
Then it was into the forest, almost instantly the wind dropped but it was still dull and damp and even darker with the trees blocking the light. But that didn’t matter, the forestry track headed in the direction that I wanted to go, it was just a matter of will it go far enough before it comes to a grinding halt? Part way and I found (well I didn’t actually find it as it was already there,) a small shooting range, being a nosy sod that I am I had a mooch around it but really there is nothing to see other than the stands, so I continued along the track, slowly but surly the track headed up towards the crags, slowly gaining a bit of height with every few meters , then the track came to an end …………..but much to my delight there was a well used muddy path still heading in the general direction that I wanted to go , it would seem that over the years many other people have had the same idea and there was a very well (if not boggy) path heading out of the trees across the moor towards the crags where it linked up with the old well established “forestry red route” .
On reaching the top of the crags, once again I was exposed to the full force of the wind and dare I say it low flying wet clouds, but the views .yes the views as poor as they where today made it all worth while as I slowly made my way towards the stone cairn at Coe crags where lunch was had in a stony nook out or the wind all the time simply loving the views with the fast flying low rain clouds whizzing past …how lucky am I? Yes it’s windy, wet and really dull but I am here right now loving every single shower as it passes.
Lunch over and its time to head back, I take a chance and follow an old grassy / muddy track into the trees thinking it will come out someplace, it’s overgrown in places but I can manage it without to many problems, there are a few really boggy sections that get my feet wet as the water goes over the top of my boots, fortunately I can only feel it on my real foot but it’s a reminder that I had better be a bit more careful over wise I might get the electrical bits on my knee wet and that could cause some real fun , however I soon link up with the track that I walked up on earlier on so then it’s a simple case of wandering back down the forestry track back to the car .
I walked about 4.2 miles today, mostly easy walking in a cold wet wind, the views where spoilt by the low cloud but I loved it and will make this a regular walk.
A few photos:-
Heading up into the forest
A bit further along, it’s very wet with the water running down the track further up
The shooting range?
Not quite sure what this is
Looking up towards the crags
The stony forestry track now reverts to this, but it’s all good
O dear, sights like this are becoming all too common, I know nothing about whom, what but I paused to pay my respects.
The track is now a well defined (if mucky) path
Finally leaving the trees but the low cloud restricts the views
Heading towards the crags and the wind gives a tempting view of what’s to come
A boundary stone?
Looking towards a misty Coe crag
Looking the other way towards long crags
Looking down to the valley bottom, still very cloudy up here
A few more photos’ as I make my way along
Now heading back into the woods along an old fire break?
A couple more (I’m starting to think is this wise wandering around at this point)
Then I am back on a well defined grass track that leads me to the forestry track (how’s that for skilful navigating
Day after thoughts , great walk , crap weather but I loved it . arty foot had to sit on the radiator during the night to dry out
ABOUT ME NORTHUMBERLAND WALKS 2006