About Me

When? Started: 1993 Who? Started with staff and friends from U H S, Chester. Organiser: Martyn Harris We walk every Wednesday 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 Wednesday than on a Saturday. Most ever: 29. Numbers walking: 2-12, a 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, Jim McCabe, Mal Pulford., Joyce Russell

Thursday, 27 May 2010

Craig Adwy-wynt, Nant Clwyd Hall and Eyarth Halt 27th May 2010.

A Pearl-bordered Fritillary - photo by Dave J.
Ransoms in the background!
Moel Fammau and the Clwydian Range.

On the bridge near Nant Clwyd Hall.

Distance:10.5 miles; Climb:963'.
Time:6 hours 01 minutes; On the move walking average:2.7 m.p.h.; Overall walk average:2.4 m.p.h.
Group:Martyn, Gordon, Tim, Celia, DaveJ, Sylvia and Georgie the Jack Russell and Phil Marsland (joining the group for the first time).
A good day for walking, not too hot, not too cold and even the odd spot of rain didn't make us feel like putting waterproofs on.
The pace all day, was for us, quite quick, although Phil did feel a little disppointed that it was less than 3.5 m.p.h.!
The highlight of the day must have been the sighting of a Pearl-bordered fritillary spotted as we crossed Eyarth Rocks Nature Reserve.
The second thing of note was the construction (in progress) of a huge water feature in front of Nant Clwyd Hall. it will be interesting to see how much has developed when we repeat the route next year.
This was definitely a Ramsons day, the woods everywhere were just dominated by flowering Ransoms. Many other flowers were seen today including, Bugle, Bluebell, Cowslip, early Purple Orchid, Arch angel as well as many varieties of daisy and Buttercups.
Birds seen or heard today included:Sand martin, Barn swallow, House martin, Carrion crow, Buzzard, Sparrowhawk, Blackbird, Blackcap, Garden warbler, Chiffchaff, Willow warbler, Blue tit, Robin, Great tit, Mallard, Pheasant, Chaffinch, Rook and Pied wagtail.
After walk drinks were enjoyed at the We Three Loggerheads Inn at Loggerheads, where Blacksheep Bitter was the beer of choice.
Once again Richard's presence was missed by all of the group, hopefully it won't be long before he can rejoin us. You never know, he may even come to the We Three Loggerheads Inn for a drink afterwards!

Tuesday, 25 May 2010

Dates and Walks May 2010.

Updated 18th May 2010.
Saturday 1st May 2010.
Pendle Hill.
Distance:8.3 miles; Climb:1985'.
Start:Downham Village Car Park. Grid ref:SD785442.
Leave Chester 8-00 a.m.
This time we we follow the route described by Terry Marsh in his book "Fifty Classic Walks in Lancashire". In it he describes it as "undoubtedly the finest ascent of Pendle Hill". this Dotterel season again, so don't forget to bring binoculars with you.

Monday 3rd May 2010.
The Little Orme and Coed Gaer.
Distance:7.2 miles; Climb:1756'.
Start: Roadside parking near the PC on the front at Craig y Don. Grid ref:SH799822
Leave Chester 9-00 a.m.
This is a walk that is becoming an annual favourite at this time of the year. The walk gives superb views across the bay to the Great Orme, and there is always the chance of seeing seals and Ganets. Hopefully we will see a few flowers, and maybe an orchid or two, although we may be a little early for them. Don't forget to bring your binoculars.

Thursday 6th May 2010.
Marion Frith, Moel Hiraddug, Cwm and Coed Yr Esgob.
Distance:10.4 miles; Climb:1600'.
Start:Car Park at the Western edge of Dyserth on the A5151. Grid ref:SJ062793.
Leave Chester 9-00 a.m.
It's a couple of years since we last did these two walks together. Both walks are taken from Dave Berry's book "Walks on the Clwydain Hills - New revised edition". He describes the first walk as delightful and the second one as providing a fascinating exploration of the low hills North of Dyserth.

Saturday 8th May 2010.
Rowen to Llanbedre-y-Cennin and More.
Distance: 6+; Climb:2000' at a guess, depending what extra we plan to do on the day.
Leave Chester 8-00 a.m.
This walk is taken from Dave Berry's book "Walks Around Betws-y-coed and the Conwy Valley. The described walk is nominally only 6 miles, but it will give us time to explore the area further, perhaps visiting Pen-y-Gaer Hillfort. Hawfinches are known to frequent the churchyard in Llanbedre-y-Cennin, so don't forget to bring binoculars with you.

Thursday 13th May 2010.
Bluebell Wood walk. Coed Pen-y-Gelli and the Gorsedd Round.
Distance:11.7 mi.es; Climb:1704'
Start:Roadside parking near pub at Lloc. Side road one way off A5026. Grid ref: SJ145765.
Leave Chester 9-00 a.m.
This walk combines two walks from Dave Berry's book "Walks Around Holywell and Pentre Halkyn". Having seen our first flowering Bluebells on the 22nd April, I thought that we had better bring our "Bluebell Wood Walk" forward a couple of weeks. Hopefully we won't be too late and Coed Allt-y-tywld will have recovered from the wood management disturbances of 2009.

Saturday 15th May 2010.
Holyhead Mountain.
Distance:11-13 miles; Climb:1905'.
Start:Roadside parking opposite the PC by the Old Harbour. Grid ref:SH245831.
Leave Chester 8-00 a.m.
This walk is becoming an annual favourite. It is taken from Carl Roger's book "Coastal Walks Around Anglesey - Volume 2". It is a superb walk that gives us plenty of opportunity to do a little birdwatching. Hopefully we will see Choughs and perhaps Puffins around South Stack. Don't forget to bring binoculars with you.

Thursday 20th May 2010.
Craig Bron-Banog and Part of Cwm Alwen.
Distance:8-12 miles; Climb:2000' at a guess.
Start:Llanfihangel Glyn Myfyr. Riverside picnic site. Grid ref:SH987496. Take the Ruthin to Cerrigydrudion road. Turn right just after the bridge by the Crown Inn. Continue down the road past the church. The picnic area is on the right just before the school.
Leave Chester 9-00 a.m.
Both walks are taken from Dave Berry's book "Walks In the Hidden Heart North Wales". The Craig Bron-Banog walk is new to us. He describes it as an eight mile figure of eight walk exploring the afforested undulating countryside South-east of  Llyn Brenig. The route meanders through Clocaenog Forest, passes a hidden waterfall and an ancient standing stone before reaching the highest point of Craig Bron-Banog with its panoramic views.

Saturday 22nd May 2010.
The Ward Stones.
Distance:12-14 miles; Climb:1700'.
Start:Jubilee Tower Car Park on the Trough of Bowland Road. Grid ref:SD542573.
Leave Chester 7-30 a.m.
This is an earlier start than usual, as the start point is only a little short of Lancaster, further than we usually travel.
Clougha Pike (1355'), Ward Stone (1836') and Grey Mare and Foal (1837') are the summits that we expect to visit on this walk.
I can't remember how long ago it is since I last did this walk in the Trough of Bowland. As far as I can remember it was a pleasant walk, although Derek Venables lost a glove in a peat bog, and Celia didn't like the 2-3 mile uphill road walk at the end!

Thursday 27th May 2010.
On Foot to Eyarth Halt, Craig Adwy-wynt and Nant Clwyd Hall.
Distance:13 miles; Climb:1161'.
Start: Ruthin Riverside Car Park (Pay and Display £3-50). Grid ref:SJ121582
Leave Chester 9-00 a.m.
This walk combines two walks from Dave Berry's Book " Walks in theVale of Clwyd", although we will try to shorten them a little. The main walk involving Craig Adwy-wynt and Nant Clwyd Hall is delightful throughout and is one our favourite walks in this area. The Eyarth Halt Walk doesn't have a lot to offer, but it links the main walk with our start point!

Saturday 29th May 2010.
St Celynnin's Church and Tal y Fan.
Distance:7+ miles; Climb: 2605'.
Start: Rowen roadside parking on right near to Post Office justafter entering the village. Grid ref:SH761719.
Leave Chester 8-00 a.m.
This walk is taken from Dave Berry's Book "Walks Around Betws-y-coed and the Conwy Valley". We attempted this walk last year at the beginning of April and the weather as we crossed Tal y fan was horrendous, hopefully it will be a little kinder this time! He describes the walk as visiting an ancient church, Maen Penddu, a standing stone), an ancient burial chamber, and a section of a Roman road. It involves an exhilarating climb across Tal y fan, giving panoramic views.

Saturday, 22 May 2010

The Ward Stone and More 22nd May 2010.

Mike D at the trig pont on Clougha Pike - photo by Dave J.
The Jubilee Tower on the Trough of Bowland Road.
Dave and Mike heading for Clougha Pyke.
A small Red grouse chick in hiding, but can you spot it?
Dave and Mike approaching the first trig point on the Backside of the Ward Stone. Martyn at the trig point on the Ward Stone. Once a simple track, now a motorway!
Looking up the Tarnbrook Valley towards the moors.

Distance:14.2 miles; (10.0 miles) Climb:1579' (1000').
Time:6 hours 13 minutes; On the move walking average:2.6 m.p.h.: Overall walk average:2.3 m.p.h. (1.7 m.p.h.).
Group:Martyn, Dave J and Mike D.
This was definitely a day when only mad dogs and Englishmen walk in the mid-day sun! We should have been on the coast cooling our feet in the sea rather than tramping across the moors with no shade at all!
Dave and Mike did the extra peak by going to Clougha Pyke before rejoining me at the first trig point on the Ward Stone.
Whilst heading for the Ward Stone on my own, I had the joy of seeing several families of Red grouse with chicks of various sizes.
Dave kept us going to almost feinting point, and lunch was only taken at 13-30. Cheese and onion on the menu with the cheese so soft it had nearly melted!
The downward track to Tarnbrook had been upgraded with hard core and now good enough for vehicles to use. No chance of loosing a glove in the peat by the waterfall any more!
I decide that walking uphill back to the car was not in my interest, so I decided to wait at Lower Lee while Mike and Dave went to bring the car back. Apparently Mike decided to do a bit of "power walking" of some sort and Dave had to do a bit of running to catch him up!
Overall a good walk. It would have been even better had the temperatures been nearer 15 Celsius rather than approaching 30 Celsius!
Birds seen or heard today included:Barn swallow, Lapwing, Curlew, Meadow pipit, Red grouse, Wheatear, Skylark, Lesser black-backed gull, Buzzard, Raven, Carrrion crow, Oystercatcher, House sparrow, Pied wagtail, Mallard and Goldfinch.
After walk drinks were enjoyed at the Priory Inn at Scorton where Bowland brews sampled were Nicky Nook and Sawley Tempted, the latter being preferred.
One of the group thought the best drink was a couple of pints of Pepsi!

Thursday, 20 May 2010

Craig Bron-Banog and Cwm Alwen 20th May 2010.

Looking down the path that we missed the first time on this walk from Llanfihangel Glyn Myfyr.Just retracing our steps to get on the Craig Bron Banog route.A global warning experiment on Craig Bron-Banog.
The experimental area, weather stations and more Lunch time at Craig Bron-Bonog, not quite the summit we were expecting, but at least Fran and Gordon had a bench to sit on!

Walk stats: Distance:10.6 miles; Climb:1031'.
Time: 5 hours 3 minutes; On the move walking average: 2.5 m.p.h.; Overall walking average:2.1 m.p.h.
Group: Martyn, Gordon, Fran, Celia, Sylvia and Dave J and Georgie the Jack Russell.
A good day predicted in terms of the weather with a little chance of a shower. Temperatures in the twenties, no wind, a little too warm for me! The three spots of rain weren't enough to cool me down! thankfully it clouded over in the afternoon so the direct sunlight was avoided. Sections through the Clocaenog Forest helped too. Path finding was relatively easy, but the first section
after lunch was the worst when several trees had fallen across the path and detours weren#'t easy underfoot.
At least after reaching the outskirts of Pentre-llyn Cymmer, the route down followed the Afon Alwen!
Although a relatively easy walk, the warm humid conditions meant that most of us were glad that the walk was less than 11 miles!
Birds seen or heard today included:Willow warbler, Chiffchaff, Blackbird, Chaffinch, Carrion crow, Buzzard, Black-headed gull, Wren, Garden warbler, Coal tit, Barn swallow, Mallard, Canada goose (one pair with three chicks) and Woodpigeon.
Butterflies seen included: Small white, Peacock and Clouded yellow.
After walk drinks were enjoyed at the We Three Loggerheads Inn at Loggerheads, where Blacksheep bitter and Wells Bombardier were the beers enjoyed. Apparently the lager and tea were good too!

Saturday, 15 May 2010

Around Holyhead Mountain 15th May 2010.

You wouldn't think we all part of the same group, would you?
The rest of the group on the Anglesey Coastal Path - photo by Richard.
Marsh Marigolds next to the path approaching Port Dafarch - photo by Richard.
Our first view of the open sea and one of the many ferries heading to and from Ireland.
Looking towards North Stack fog station.
Roger on a delightful section of the Anglesey Coastal Path.
Mike on the Anglesey Coastal Path after exploring the "his and hers" shelters.
Looking back across Abraham's Bosom towards South Stack.Back on track after "seeing" Richard's seal!Don't ask!

Distance:12.3 miles; Climb:1326'.
Time:6 hours27 minutes; On the move walking average:2.2 m.p.h.; Overall walk average:1.9 m.p.h.
Group:Martyn, Richard, Roger, Tito and Mike D.
What a glorious, warm and sunny day for walking this turned out to be, especially when you're on this magnificent section of the Anglesey Coastal Path. There is always something special about being beside the sea.
As well as the many birds seen on today's walk, there were many coastal flowers in bloom, and one or two butterflies, even a Green shield bug too.
On approaching Holyhead Mountain four of the group decided to head for the summit, and having got lost on the top, were undeservedly rewarded with hearing a Cuckoo!
Other birds seen or heard today included:Common starling, House sparrow, Herring gull, Blackbird, Robin, Chaffinch, Chiffchaff, Willow warbler, Fulmar, Chough, Razorbill, Guillemot, Puffin, Jackdaw, Raven, Carrion crow, Rock pipit, Greenfinch, Stonechat, Mallard, Lesser Black-backed gull, Black-billed magpie, Wheatear, Pied, Buzzard, wagtail, Collared dove, Meadow pipit, Skylark, Woodpigeon and Oystercatcher.
This is a superb walk, only marred by the trek through the centre of Holyhead especially when legs are tired as they usualy are!
After walk drinks were enjoyed at the Britannia Inn, where the Lee bitter just about revived some of us!

Thursday, 13 May 2010

Coed Pen - y Gelli and the Gorsedd Round 13th May 2010.

Lunch is over, getting ready to leave Coed Pen y Gelli Quarry - photo by Richard.
A glorious field of Dandelions - photo by Richard.
Yes, it is our Bluebell wood walk.
Come on Gorden, it's time you talked to to the winners of the general election!
Any suggestions, which member of of group posed for this photo?
Are these the sages of the group?

Distance: 12.3 miles; Climb; 1022',
Time: 5 hours 56 minutes;, On the move walking average:2.5 m.p.h.; Overall walk avergae:2.1m.p.h.
Group:Martyn Richard, Roger, Dave J. and Silvia, Gordon, Tim, Fran and Tito.
I knew it would be a good day when I started day and my breakfast day egg turned out to be a "double yorker" !
Weather forecast not brilliant, but I at least one of us didn't put waterproofs on all day!
This was our Bluebell wood walk, fortunately our first wood produced the goods!
We had the best of the day and lunch time in the Coed y Gellin quarry was taken in glorious sunshine. Mobile phone contact was good too, several members of the group were able to take advantage of this, and Celie was still on Crete!
The Gorsedd round didn't have a lot o off, the highlight being meeting a young mum with two with two very young children taking their dog for walk.
Birds seen or heard today included: Chiffchaff, Willow warbler, House sparrow, Tree sparrow, Black-billed magpie, Jay, Greenfinch, Blue tit, Great tit, Blackcap, Carrion crow, Jackdaw, Rook, Mallard, Greylag goose, Chaffinch, Goldfinch, Blue tit, Great tit, Blackbird, Coal tit,Robin, Mistle thrush, Song thrush, Whitethroat and Barn swallow.
After walk drinks were enjoyed at the Britannia Inn at Pentre Halkyn. The Lees Bitter today was superb!

Saturday, 8 May 2010

Rowen, Pen-y-gaer and Llanbedre-y-Cennin 8th May 2010.

On the cold windy summit of Pen-y-gaer.
Heading for unknown territory - Memorymap and Satmap GPS's to the rescue!Lunch time. Art in the countryside!.
Walk stats: Distance:8.0 m.p.h.; Climb:1483'.
Time:4 hours 42 minutes; On the move walking average:2.1 m.p.h.; Overall walk average:1.7 m.p.h.
Group:Martyn, Richard, Roger and Dave J.
Once again we were lucky with the weather, hardly any rain worth mentioning, but at times the Northerly wind was a little on the keen side to say the least.
Our bonus for the day was the summit of Pen-y-gaer, but the route taken wasn't one to be recommended! we decided to head up through the gorse, but some of us emerged on the summit with scratched legs and black charcoal streaks across both legs and trousers, the consequence of trekking through the burnt gorse areas!
after Pen-y-gaer we decided to extend the walk a little using paths that were on the OS map, but we found were not easily to locate on the ground. Thankfully modern GPS's with OS maps came to our rescue to keep us on track.
It was good to see that the Old Bull at Llanbedre-y-Cennin had reopened since our last visit. We didn't call in, we knew that we would be visiting the Brit later in the day!
Birds seen or heard today included:Barn swallow, Jackdaw, Raven, Rook, Carrion crow, House sparrow, Blue tit, Great tit, House martin, Chiffchaff, Dunnock, Willow warbler, Grey wagtail, Buzzard, Great spotted woodpecker, Meadow pipit, Skylark, Robin, Blackbird, Blackcap, Yellowhammer, Wheatear, Chaffinch, Mallard, Dipper, Shellduck and Garden warbler (bird of the day).

Thursday, 6 May 2010

Marion Frith, Moel Hiraddug and Craig Fawr 6th May 2010.

Moel Hiraddug ahead, but not for some time, hopefully the low cloud will clear! It must be Bluebell season! Clychau'r gog / Croesor haf - but the're not all blue!
At the trig point on Craig Fawr, not exactly sunbathing!
Walk stats: 10.3 miles; Climb:1579'.
Time:5 hours 25 minutes; On the move walking average: 2.3 m.p.h.; Overall walk average: 1.8 m.p.h.
Group: Martyn, Richard, Roger, Gordon, Tim, Sylvia and Dave J., Fran and Tito.
The weather forecast was a little iffy to say the least, but in the end we got a way with it! In the main it was damp and humid, but the threat of any "real" rain didn't materialise!
For much of the walk, including lunch on Moel Hiraddug, mist accompanied us.
Thankfully after lunch we even had a view from the Northern edge of Moel Hiraddug over the quarry Dyserth and beyond to Prestatyn and the coast.
Flowers today included: Bluebell, Early Purple Spotted orchids and Cowslips.
Birds seen or heard included: Common starling, Blackbird, Song thrush, Mistle thrush, Collared dove, Woodpigeon, Wheatear, Barn swallow, House martin, Blue tit, Great tit, Greenfinch, Chaffinch, Chiffchaff, Willow warbler, Great spotted woodpecker, Green woodpecker, Woodpigeon, Collard dove, Robin, Wren, Carrion crow, Black-billed magpie and Herring gull and maybe Richard and Roger's owl!
After walk drinks, as ever, were enjoyed at the Bitannia Inn at Pentre Halkyn. The Lees biter today was particularly good, but I wasn't driving!

Monday, 3 May 2010

Little Orme 3rd May 2010.

Richard's Early Purple Orchid.
At the start of the walk, lucky to get a parking spot, I didn't!
Almost a guard of honour for Fran!
Dave J. returning on the trig point on the Little Orme.
Richard admiring the view across the bay to the Great Orme.
A the trig point on the Little Orme.
The Little Orme from our lunch spot Mynydd Pant.
Can you believe there are three people in this photo?

Distance:7.5 miles; Climb:1373'.
Time:4 hours 13 minutes; On the move walking average:2.3 m.p.h.; Overall walk average:1.8 m.p.h.
Group:Martyn, Richard, Roger, Sylvia and Dave J., Fran and Tito, Mike D., Dave and Sue P.
A perfect day for walking, some may have thought that it was little cool at the trig point on the Little Orme, but for me it was just right! Sunny all day, and occasionally we caught the cooling breeze to ensure that we didn't overheat!
The views from the Little Orme are superb, across the bay to the Great Orme or looking back at the snow capped peaks the Carneddau or even looking Eastward towards Colwyn Bay. The little visited Little Orme is a wonderful vantage point.
We didn't see any Seals this time, but this was a minor point on this glorious walk.
Lunch was taken, as usual, on the summit of Mynydd Pant. we sheltered on the Eastern side and basked in the sunshine, some wishing we could linger longer and have an afternoon siesta!
We thought that had come too early for the orchids, but as we approached St David's College, we spotted some Early Purple Orchids in bloom. Late on we even saw a good clump of Bluebells in flower.
Birds seen or heard today included: Herring gull, Black-billed magpie, Great cormorant, Shag, Jackdaw, Carrion crow, House sparrow, Wheatear, Fulmar, Razorbill, Guillemot, Shag, Robin, Bullfinch, House martin, Barn Swallow, Chough, Greenfinch, Blackcap, Blackbird, Common starling and Linnet.
After walk drinks were enjoyed as usual, at the Britannia Inn at Pentre Halkyn.

Saturday, 1 May 2010

Pendle Hill 1st May 2010.

Dave's Dotterel. Richard's Dotterel.
Admiring the superb memorial Scout Cairn.
Looking across the Pendle Hill towards the impressive circular windshelter.
Mike enjoying the view - why do I have to go to work on Tuesday?
One of my best shots of a Dottrel on Pendle hill.
One of my best shots of Dotterel on Pendle Hill.
Lower Ogden Reservoir, a reservoir we didn't expect to see!

Walk stats: Distance:9.9 miles;Climb:1800'.
Time:5 hours 46 minutes; On the move walking average:2.2 m.p.h; Overall walk average:1.7 m.p.h.
Group:Martyn, Richard, Roger, Mike D., Sylvia and Dave J.
The weather forecast was good for the morning with temperatures on the low side and rain starting around 14-00. They got the rain right, but the temperature was definitely in the teens all day!
Once the slog of crossing Worston Moor was over and we had reached Scout Cairn, the walk across the flat plateau of Pendle Moor was superb. Excellent views down towards Downham below and further Eastward to Ingleborough and the three peaks of Yorkshire.
Crossing the flat top we were serenaded by countless Skylarks, what we thought was going to be the bird highlight of the day, little di we know then that better was to come!
We had crossed the last stile before heading Big End and the trig point, when we had the satisfaction of this year's "Dotterel walk" living up to its name. Only 20 feet away 4 Dotterel entertained us for several minutes. The birdwatchers amongst us could go home happy!
Birds seen or heard today included:Red-legged partridge, Greenfinch, Jackdaw, Carrion crow, Blackbird, Red grouse, Pheasant, Meadow pipit, Skylark, Curlew, Willow warbler, Mallard, Pied wagtail and Grasshopper warbler (a contender for the bird of the day).
After walk drinks were enjoyed at the Assheton Arms in Downham, where Thwaites Wainwroght Bitter went down particularly well.