About Me

When? Started: 1993 Who? Started with staff and friends from U H S, Chester. Organiser: Martyn Harris We walk every Thursday and Saturdays, New Years day and May Day. How many walk? Walks take place as long as there are at least 2 wanting to walk on that day. More walk on a Thursday than on a Saturday. Most ever: 29. Numbers walking: 2-12, and usually about 8 mid-week and 3-4 on Saturday. Where do we walk? Saturday: Anywhere in North and Mid-Wales, Peak District, Shropshire and the Long Mynd and as far North as the Trough of Bowland. Thursday: Anywhere within about 40 miles of Chester. Type of walk: Distance: 6 – 14 miles. Climb: up to 4000’ (but usually very much less!). Those involved in 2017:- Martyn Harris, Fran Murphy, Sue and Michel Pelissier, Annie Hammond, Sue and Dave Pearson, Mike Dodd, David and Anne Savage, Celia de Mengle, Wendy and Ian Peers, Roger and Margaret Smith, Tim and Carol Dwyer, Paul Collinson, Phil Marsland, Sylvia and Dave Jenkins, Sheila McNee, Ed Meads, Elaine and John Greenhalgh.

Friday, 26 September 2014

Around Bryn Euryn, Coed Pwllcrochan and More From Rhos-on-Sea 25th September 2014.

The ruins of Llys Euryn at the start of the described walk.
Lunch time - Can anyone spot the odd boots?
The gentle climb after lunch.
Nant Groes looking to the East.
The start of the descent from the View to Mochdre.
BT Infinity was down until Monday 29th September, Post put on thanks to the Pelissiers.
Distance: 10.0 miles. Climb: 1593’.
Time:  5 hours 38 minutes. On the move walking average: 2.4 m.p.h. Overall walking average: 1.8 m.p.h.
Group: Martyn, Roger, Annie, Sue and Michel, David S., Wendy P., and Tim D.
Arriving at Rhos-on-Sea and Phil not there!  Alas he had sent me an e-mail and my BT Infinity has been down since Tuesday. A quick phone call to Jean and we were informed that he couldn’t make it today. Our start must have been delayed by as much as 1 minute!
Our walk was in an area where we could expect some rain, but if we were lucky we would miss it all. Annie was hoping for the latter as she had left her waterproof jacket in her car back in Chester. Sadly we didn’t see her in her improvised waterproof – a bin bag with appropriate hole cut in it for her head!
That wasn’t the end of forgetfulness in the group, Roger, obviously not having his gear checked by Margaret, arrived with two different boots in his boot bag – at least he had one left boot and one right boot!
The walk today wasn’t exactly as we had, and we effectively ended up doing the walk in the opposite direction as that described, but thankfully David had his glasses and could still read the OS map!
Overall this was an enjoyable walk, despite the fact that there was more road-walking than usual and the fact that we always seemed to be going uphill!
We had lunch at the entrance to Fox Hill house, quite appropriate since I had earlier seen a fox in Coed Pwllycrochan. Most sat on the wall near the entrance and didn’t seem to mind the fact that they were on the roadside.
Near views were good, but distant views to Snowdonia were marred by low cloud, thankfully missing where we were.
Birds seen or heard today included: Eurasian curlew, Oystercatcher, Herring gull, Great black-backed gull, European robin, Common blackbird, Woodpigeon, Black-billed magpie, Eurasian jay, Raven, Rook, Carrion crow, House sparrow, Collared dove, Common buzzard and Great tit.

Later than usual we arrived at the Blue Bell Inn at Halkyn, where drinks enjoyed were able to revive tired legs. The Gwynt-y-Draig, Pyder went down well!

Monday, 22 September 2014

Walks and Dates September 2014

Thursday 4th September 2014.
Llanfair Talhaiarn, Moel Unben and Mynydd Dir.
Distance 10-11 miles; Climb:2000'.
Start: Riverside car park in Llanfair Talhaiarn. Grid ref:SH927702.
Leave Chester at 9-00 a.m.
This walk is taken from Lorna Jenner's book "Walking in the Vale of Clwyd and the Denbigh Moors". This is a walk that we really enjoyed the first time that we did it, hence its regular inclusion on the list. It is nominally only a 5 mile walk, but the extension doubles it.
Saturday 6th September 2014.
The Lawley and Caer Caradoc. 
Distance:10-11 miles; Climb:2000'.
Start: Church Stretton centre car park (pay and display). Grid ref:SO454911.
Leave Chester 8-00 a.m.
It's Dotterel time again, so this is another walk that may give us the chance of seeing them again. The walk combines two walks taken from Ian Jones' booklet "20 Walks From Church Stretton".It is a walk that we first did in 1998 and have done several times since then. This is a superb walk, especially on a good day. It is the nearest that you can get to a ridge walk, particularly along the Lawley! The last time we did this walk we were lucky to see an Osprey near the fisheries, almost as good as a Dotterel.
Thursday 11th September 2014.
A Clwydian Trio.
Distance: 9 miles; Climb:1900' '.
Start: Pentre-celyn car park . Grid ref: SJ150534.
The car parking area is on the left adjacent to the sign for Pentre-celyn, just off the B5429.
Leave Chester 9-00 a.m.
This is another walk by Debbie Hamilton and is taken from the "Walking" magazine. This walk includes the section of Offa's Dyke Path goes near Moel y Plas, Moel Gyw, Moel Llanfair and Boncyn y Waen-grogen. Her walk starts from Llanfair Dyffryn Clwyd, but we will start at Pentre Celyn about half a mile beyond Graigfechan.
Saturday 13th September 2014.
No walk - I'm going on a different sort of trail!
Thursday 18th September 2014.
Greenfield Valley, Gadlys and East of Holywell.
Distance: 10-11 miles. Climb:1500'.
Start: Greenfield Valley car park on the A548. Grid ref: SJ197775.
Leave Chester at 09-00 a.m.
This walk uses two complete walks and part of a third walk from Dave berry's book "Walks Around Holywell and Halkyn Mountains". This will be the second time that we will complete the whole of the Greenfield Valley walk and the short route on the Gadlys walk.  A reasonable amount of climb as we climb from the coast road to Holywell on two occasions.
Saturday 20th September 2014.
Win Hill and Lose Hill.
Distance: 9 miles. Climb: 2000'.
Start: Castleton Road Car Park in Hope (Just off the A618). Grid ref: SK17128350. Alternative parking next to church on Market Place.
Leave Chester at 08-00 a.m.
This is a walk by Cressbrook Multi-Media. It is described as a fine walk with excellent views. This is a circuit from Hope that provides a magnificent day out.
This is a new walk for me, and one that I've wanted to do for some time. I've done walks including Win Hill before, but I can't recall ever having walked on Lose Hill.
Thursday 25th September 2014.
Rhos-on-Sea, Bryn Euryn and Coed Pwllcrochan.
Distance: 10-11 miles. Climb: 1800'.
Start: Roadside parking on Marine Drive in Rhos-on-Sea, near to St., Trillo's Church. Grid ref: SH841811. It may may be better to park in Trillo Avenue, opposite the church.
Leave Chester at 09-00.
This walk combines three walks from Dave Berry's book "Walks Around Llandudno and Prestatyn".
One is described as a varied walk exploring the hinterland behind Rhos-on-Sea and includes the hillfort in Bryn Euryn Nature Reserve. The other walk offers panoramic views as it meanders through the undulating countryside bordering on Mochdre, Colwyn Bay and Rhos-on-Sea.
Saturday 27th September 2014.
Aled Isaf and More.
Distance: 10-11 miles. Climb: 1500'.
Start: Off road parking just before the dam on Llyn Aled. Grid ref: SH916579.
Leave Chester at 08-30 a.m.
This walk is taken from Dave Berry's book "Walks on the Denbigh Moors" or his slightly newer book "Hidden Heart of North Wales". The walk explores the expansive  tract of moorland and upland pastures around  Llyn Aled and  Aled Isaf. The route in part follows tracks not easily seen and is for experienced walkers only.  At one point the walk follows a delightful upland path via Llys Dymper, before returning South over the moorland top of Foel Lwyd. The extension allows us to explore moorland paths over Moel Bengam and Cefn Du along paths that I have wanted to explore for some time. Has been known to be boggy, but hopefully not too boggy at this time of the year. As an extra challenge we may complete this walk in an anticlockwise direction, the opposite way to the way we normally complete the walk!

Saturday, 20 September 2014

Win Hill and Lose Hill From Hope 20th September 2014

Win Hill Pike just ahead.
At the trig point on Win Hill Pike.
Panorama from Win Hill, looking towards Ladybower Reservoir.
At Hope Cross.
Back Tor approached from Nether Booth.
At the toposcope on Lose Hill.
Lose Hill from the Hope Path.
Walk stats: Distance: 10.2 miles. Climb: 1773'.
Time 6 hours 15 minutes. On the move walking average: 2.0 m.p.h. Overall walk average: 1.6 m.p.h.
Group: Martyn and Mike.
The weather forecast optimistically suggested that it would be good, but that was somewhat exaggerated! At least it remained dry until we started our descent of Lose Hill. Distant views were rather misty, but at least they were there. This walk had two good stretches of ridge top walking on both sides of the Edale Valley, and these alone warrants a repeat trip in the future.
 Birds seen or heard today included: European robin, House sparrow, Pied wagtail, Rook, Jackdaw, Raven, Peregrine falcon, Coal tit and Common buzzard.
 After walk drinks were enjoyed at the Wilkes Head in Leek, where the Whim Ales, Hartington Bitter tasted as good as ever, still on top of my list of favourite beers.

Thursday, 18 September 2014

Greenfield Valley and East of Holywell 18th September 2014

Part of the Lower Mills at the Greenfield Valley Heritage Park.
St. Winifred's Well, Holywell.
"What are we waiting for?" 
Some bloke in the way with a camera!
The view from our lunch spot.
A closer view of our the natural harbour from our lunch spot.
Another case of  "why are we waiting again?"
Answer: Your leader went a different way!
Walk stats: Distance: 8.5 miles. Climb: 987'.
Time: 4 hours 58 minutes. On the move walking average: 2.2 m.p.h. Overall walk average: 1.7 m.p.h.
Group: Martyn, Sue and Michel, Annie, Roger, Phil, David S., Celia and Tim.
 Another good day for walking, warm and dry and occasionally a delightful cooling breeze.
  This is a roller coaster of a walk, in that we started the gentle climb from the coast road to Holywell, back down to the coastal road only to climb back up to Holywell before descending along the old railway track back to the Greenfield Valley Heritage Car park.
 It was good to see that work has been done on the path through Coed Llwybr-y-bi, and we ascended a set of steps that we had always missed on previous visits! It was good to see that on other parts of the route new kissing gates and improvements on steps had been done.
 However after lunch we had difficulty getting over one stile that was overgrown with vegetation and some awkward barbed wire. We should have looked at Dave Berry's description rather than the OS Map!
 Birds seen or heard today included: Common coot, Mallard, Great cormorant, Grey wagtail (pointed out by Sue), Moorhen, Common blackbird, Woodpigeon, Common starling, Jackdaw, Common crow, Rook, Black-billed magpie, House sparrow, House martin (about 50 over the mill pond in Greenfield Heritage Park) and Common buzzard.
 After walk drinks were enjoyed at the Blue Bell in Halkyn, where Blue Bell Bitter (brewed by Facers) went down well and Tim even had a pint of a special lager recommended by Celia! Two Trees cider went down well at home, despite the container "exploding" in Michel's car on the way home! Sorry Michel, I'll have to get a new carrier bag, one that is leak proof!

Thursday, 11 September 2014

The Clwydians North of Graigfechan 11th September 2014

First stop for Damsons!
Heading for Pant Myharan and the Clwydians.
At the foot of Moel Llech, but too early for lunch!
At the foot of Moel Llech and time for lunch
or
"What's this? Oh yes it's one of Margaret's Welsh cakes!"
Looking North towards Moel Famau
Is it art? Not according to Fran. "It's made of plastic and it wobbles."
Lime kiln in the woods East of Graigfechan.
Walk stats: Distance: 8.4 miles. Climb: 1393'.
Time: 5 hours 1 minute. On the move walking average: 2.1 m.p.h. Overall walk average: 1.7 m.p.h.
Group: Martyn, Roger, Annie, Sue and Michel, Celia, Fran and David S.
This was another glorious day for walking, although at times it was a little too warm, especially around mid-day. The views from the Offa's Dyke path over the Clwydians are always good, especially towards the Vale of Clwyd.  Distant views were a little misty, and at no time could we see the mountains of Snowdonia.
 After the circumnavigation of Moel Llanfair were ready for lunch, some more than others!
The treat of the day was provided by Roger (at least he carried them in his rucksack) were some Welsh cakes baked by Margaret. Thank you Margaret, we are all glad you forgot to buy biscuits from your holiday for your Nordic Walking Group. All enjoyed them, but Fran declared that they were best ever.
 It was so pleasant at our lunch spot that we stayed for more than half an hour. Is this what happens when you become a real pensioner?
 On the return route we took a path from near Bryn Isaf Farm to Llwyn Isaf before heading South to Graig and the path through the woods to Graigfechan.
 Birds seen or heard today included: Common crow, Meadow pipit, Goldfinch, Raven, Jackdaw, Common buzzard, Peregrine falcon and Black-billed magpie.
 Overall a good walk and long enough on a warm day like today.
After walk drinks were enjoyed at the We Three Loggerheads where the only beer on offer today was Black Sheep bitter, which wasn't quite at its best!

Sunday, 7 September 2014

Caer Caradoc and The Lawley 6th September 2014

Our first view of Caer Caradoc.
Stony outcrops on the final approach to caer Caradoc hill fort.
Walking on top of the Eastern ramparts of the hill fort on Caer Caradoc.
The path from Caer Caradoc leading to the Lawley.
Caer Caradoc from The Wilderness.
Panorama of the walk from higher path on The Wilderness.
Walk stats: Distance: 10.5 miles. Climb: 1831'.
Time: 6 hours 10 minutes. On the move walking average: 2.1 m.p.h. Overall walk average: 1.7 m.p.h.
Group: Martyn, Celia and Catherine Murphy.
We set off with it being somewhat overcast and distant view somewhat hazy, but nevertheless still warm and rather humid.
 This time we actually completed the walk in an anti-clockwise direction. As this was the first time walking in this direction, it almost seemed like doing a completely different walk.
 Once we reached the ramparts of the hill fort on Caer Caradoc the views opened up, making the slog up worth while.
 Lunch was taken on the Northern side of The Lawley, and as we had lunch the Sun came out and we were entertained by several Ravens and a pair of Peregrine falcons.
 Finding the path from The Lawley through the woods to the top of Hoar Edge isn't easy to find, and we eventually found the path that led to Southern most path. This path proved to be much better that the Northern path that we had used in the past when doing the walk as described by Ian R. Jones in his booklet "20 Church Stretton Walks".
 Birds seen or heard today included: Jackdaw, Meadow pipit, Carrion crow, Common buzzard, Raven, Common kestrel, Goldfinch, Nuthatch, Barn swallow and Peregrine falcon.
 As Catherine had to head back home straight away, we quenched our thirst at the Pant -yr- Ochain at Gresford.

Thursday, 4 September 2014

Llanfair Talhaiarn and Moel Unben 4th September 2014

"On the way down already and we've only just climbed up!"
"Can anyone identify these legs?"
Panorama from Moel Unben - looking towards Snowdonia.
Panorama looking towards the Clwydians.
Snowdonia from Moel Unben.
A calf that produced a few "ahs".
A good reason to cut the walk short"
Walk stats: 6.5 miles. Climb: 947'.
Time: 4 hours 14 minutes. On the move walking average: 2.1 m.p.h. Overall walk average: 1.5 m.p.h.
Group: Martyn, Sue and Dave P., Ceia, Roger, Sue and Michel.
The weather forecasters didn't quite get it right today! they suggested it was partly cloudy and we would get a 10 m.p.h. breeze. In fact it was sunny throughout the walk and virtually no breeze of any significance that could cool us.
 After just three miles w had reached the summit of Moel Unben and as it was just about 12-00, no-one objected when I suggested we should have lunch. The views from this little top were superb, especially towards Snowdonia.
 In addition one or two of the group were entertained as they watched a farmer and his tractor and tried to pick which direction he would actually leave the field. They all lost!
 Setting off after lunch, I was thinking this is too warm to do the whole walk and how I could suggest that crossing the footbridge and climbing all the way up on the other side of the road as far as Mynydd Dir seemed an awful long climb. I even mentioned this as we approached the footbridge, the point where the decision had to be made. When we arrived at the relevant footpath and the footbridge, the path was closed and the footbridge no longer existed. We had no choice, we had to do the shorter version of the walk! To be honest no-0ne in the group seemed to  mind, although we only just arrived as the Blue bell in Halkyn opened at 15-00.
 Birds seen or heard today included: Carrion crow, Common buzzard, House sparrow, Goldfinch, Pied wagtail, Meadow pipit, Stonechat, Barn swallow, House martin and Common pheasant.
 After walk drinks were enjoyed at the Blue Bell in Halkyn where the house beers (brewed by Facers) and Castle IPA went down well. Their "250th cider went down well too, but after I had got home!
 As this was the first time  for the rest of the group,  didn't know how they would take to this new hostelry. Celia said she could cope with it, so I as suppose that means it's OK!
 Overall a good walk, even if I have to look into how we may extend the walk in the future (that is assuming that the group in the future wants to walk more than 6.5 miles!).