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 in mid-week and 2-4 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, Wend and Ian Peers, 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, Nigel Taylor, Naomi Deynem

Thursday, 25 December 2014

Walks and Dates December 2014

Updated 25th December 2014.
Happy Christmas Everyone.
Thursday 4th December 2014
Burton and Parkgate.
Distance:10 miles. Climb:350'.
Start: Roadside parking on Denhall Lane next to benches overlooking the marshes. Grid ref: SJ301747.
Leave Chester 9-00 a.m.
The Burton circuit is taken from Jen Darling's book "Walks in West Cheshire and the Wirral". The extension will involve some road walking through Neston to link up with the Wirral Way and onto Parkgate. The return route will use coastal paths as much as possible and passes Neston Old Quay and Denhall Quay on the way back to Denhall Lane.
Saturday 6th December 2014.
Mynydd Marian.
Distance: 7-8 miles. Climb: 1000'.
Start: Llandulas Beach Car Park. Grid ref: SH907786.
Leave Chester at 08-30.
This walk is one that we often usually do on a Thursday, but I need to get back quite early, so I thought that it would be good one to do.
This walk is taken from Dave Berry's book, "Walks on the North Wales Coast". It combines an interesting section of the coat line with the attractive limestone countryside between, Old Colwyn, Llysfaen and Llandulas.
Thursday 11th December 2014.
Grindley Brook to Marbury.
Distance: 8-9 miles. Climb: 200' at a guess.
Start: Layby on the A41, East of Grindley Brook Locks Cafe and about 400 m before the roundabout / junction with the A49. Grid ref: SJ 524428.
Leave Chester at 09-00.
This walk is one that Phil saw in the Times, planned by Christopher Somerville, so ignoring the preduces of many of the group I decided to give a go! The walk starts at the Horse and Jockey, but we will start in the layby a little East of that particular hostelry.
The walk is described as one which goes through a countryside that is a maze of drumlin hills and kettlehole lakelets. I womder if we will be able to identify these two features of the landscape. He describes the walk as being boggy in places, but he did it in February, hopefully it won't be as bad for us! The walk included parts of Bishop Bennett's Way, the Sandstone Trail, South Cheshire Way and parts of the Shropshire Union Canal.
Saturday 13th December 2014.
Garreg Fawr and Coedydd Aber.
Distance: 10 miles. Climb: 1800 - 2000'.
Leave Chester at 08-30 a.m.
Start: Forestry Commission car park (pay and display)at Bont Newydd. Grid ref: SH62720.
This walk combines two walks from Dave Berry's book "Walks On the North Wales Coast" , well all of one walk and part of another!
The Garreg Fawr walk explores the foothills of the Carneddau between Llanfairfechan and Abergwyngeryn, giving us contrasting views of coast and mountains. The second walk visits Aber Falls using paths on each side of the valley. All the recent rain could make the falls spectacularly at their best.
Wednesday December 18th 2014.
Halkyn, Limestone, Lead and Moel Ffagnallt.
(See start point change below)
The walk this week has been changed from the Tursday to the Wednesday, as I anticipate that many in the walking group will want to go to Gordon's funeral.
Distance:10 miles; Climb:1000'.
Start: Britannia Inn, Pentre Halkyn. Grid ref: SJ211711. As the Blue Bell Inn is closed until 17-00, we will start this walk at our usual start point at the Britannia Inn.
Leave Chester at 09-00.
We haven't started a walk from this location for quite some time. I thought that as this is the last walk before Christmas that it was a good time to do so. It combines two walks from Dave Berry's book "Walks Around Holywell and Halkyn Mountain". This walk combines two of my favourite walks in this fascinating area on our local patch. As this the last walk before Christmas fruit cake will be provided, but has been maturing for more that a year, sample it at your risk!
Saturday 20th December 2014.
Holywell, Bagillt and Flint.
Postponed - Billy no mates again!
Distance: 9-10 miles. Climb: 430'.
Start: Flint Caste Car Park (East of the castle and West of the Lifeboat Station). Grid ref: SJ 246733.
Leave Chester at 09-00 a.m.
This walk uses three walks from Dave Berry's book "Walks Around Chester and the River Dee."  This is essentially a linear walk, so we will have to arrange enough cars to have cars at both Flint and Holywell or alternatively use the bus to take us from Flint to Holywell. (Leaves Flint McDonald's on Holywell Road, at 10-14).
The walk starts at the highest point in the walk, so could really be regarded as a gentle stroll down to the coast and back to the coast to Greenfield Docks and back to Flint!
The last time we did this walk was on a Thursday and everyone said that they enjoyed it, so I thought that it would be a good walk to do for those that didn't have to do any last minute Christmas shopping.
At this time of the year thee are plenty of Wintering birds on the coast, so it would be well worth bringing binoculars with you if you have them.
Thursday 25th December 2014.
No walk for obvious reasons!
Saturday 27th December 2014.
Llanfairfechan to Aber Ogwen and Back.
Postponed - Billy no mates again! 
Distance: 10 miles. Climb: 200'.
Start: Llanfairfechan Promenade Car Park. Grid ref: SH679754.
Leave Chester at 08-30.
We have done this walk many times, and on occasions have taken advantage of the picnic tables at Aber Ogwen car park or even sheltered for lunch in one of the hides at the Spinnies Nature Reserve.
This is a very pleasant walk at this time of the year, although in the past we have experienced quite bracing winds! Coastal walks are always delightful, especially when you can combine them with a bit of birdwatching! High tides about 14-00. This should make the burds come closer to shor on the return journey.

Wednesday, 17 December 2014

Halkyn, Limestone, Lead and More 17th December 2014

Panorama from the trig point on Halkyn Mountain - looking towards Moel Famau.
At the trig point on Halkyn Mountain.
The working quarry near Rhes-y-Cae.
At the millenium toposcope on Moel Ffagnallt.
Panorama from a point moorland between Windmill and Halkyn - looking towards the West.
The Folly at Halkyn Old Hall.
Walk stats: Distance: 8.3 miles. Climb: 997'.
Time: 4 hours 28 minutes. On the move walking average: 2.3 m.p.h. Overall walk average: 1.8 m.p.h.
Group: Martyn, Roger, Annie, Phil and David S.
With temperatures forecast to be 11 Celsius and maybe even warmer, I decided that it was shorts weather. Thankfully it was and the only time I needed to put my fleece on was as we had lunch on the top of Moel Ffagnallt where it was on the breezy side and we experienced a slight dampness as a cloud passed over us, hardly enough to warrant taking the trouble to put waterproofs on!
  This walk wasn't exactly the route originally planned as we ended going up Moel Ffagnallt the way we normally go down and explored the Halkyn Mountain area behind Halkyn and Windmill.  We did however fail to locate the path that was supposed to go through the grounds of Halkyn Old Hall, presumably it has been diverted to the alternative path just to the East of it.
 Overall this was a very pleasant walk, dare I say delightful, wandering along the many green tracks that criss-cross Halkyn Mountain.
 Not many birds seen or heard today, but they included: Carrion crow, Jackdaw, Common blackbird, Black-billed magpie, Meadow pipit, European robin, House sparrow, Fieldfare and Goldfinch.
 As tradition dictates,  mature fruit cake was provided for those able to come on the last walk before Christmas, and after drinks were enjoyed at the Britannia Inn, where the Lees bitter was in good nick and the real fire ensured that we had a warm welcome!

More Sad News.

Sue Pelissier's father died last weekend. 
His funeral will take place on the 23rd December 2014.
Our thoughts and prayer are with Sue, Michel, Christopher, Danny and the rest of the family.

Sunday, 14 December 2014

Sad News - Gordon McNee

Gordon McNee.
I have just been informed that Gordon died last Thursday 4th December 2014.

Gordon's funeral will take place at All Saints Church, Gresford at 14-00 on Thursday 18th December 2014.

Our thoughts and prayers are with Sheila and the family art this sad time.
The address for All Saints Church is: 
The Green 
North Wales.
LL12 8RG

Saturday, 13 December 2014

Mynydd Marian 13th December 2014

Our view of the Great Orme from the coast just before we headed inland.
The Greatn Orme from the hill behind Old Colwyn Golf Course.
Penny for your thoughts!
Our lunch spot on Mynydd Marian.
View from our lunch spot.
On the path heading for Craig y Forwyn.
The path through the wood below Craig y Forwyn.
The Celtic Cross in the church yard at Llandulas.
Walk stats: 8.3 miles. Climb: 633' (1000').
Time: 4 hours 43 minutes. On the move walking average: 2.2 m.p.h. Overall walk average: 1.7 m.p.h.
Group: Martyn, Mike and Roger.
The forecast for today was good, bright and crisp but on the cool side. In fact it was pretty good, but the warm sunshine in the afternoon was such that I could discard my jacket after lunch - no-one else followed suit!
 We set of along the coastal path, not the prettiest section, with temperatures on the cool side, but we were encouraged with superb views ahead along the coast towards the Llandudno and the Great Orme.
  It was good to see that the route through the Old Colwyn Golf Course was now much easier to follow, even if it does seem to be diverted from the path on the OS map.  I assume that there has been a path diversion. (I'm happy for this diversion as I always felt guilty heading in a straight line across across the fairways).
 Notable on this walk was that many of the stiles had been replaced by kissing gates, a bonus as most of us have reached OAP status!
 Mynydd Marian is an excellent spot to stop for lunch, on a good day when the wind isn't approaching from the West, then there are two benches with superb views towards Snowdonia (today with some peaks capped in snow) and as to today we were able to find a seat sheltered from these winds, but giving us superb views towards Rhyl. The best view towards Rhyl I've ever seen!
 This walk took us along several sections of limestone escarpments that gave superb views over the valley to the West before we headed back inland towards Llandulas.
 As a change we went through the Llandulas churchyard where we came across an inpressive Celtic Cross.
 Birds seen or heard today included: Herring gull, Great cormorant, Common buzzard, Oystercatcher, Common blackbird, Dunnock, European robin, Turnstone, Great tit, Blue tit, Redwing, Fieldfare, Mistle thrush, Woodpigeon, Carrion crow, House sparrow, Raven and Eurasian jay.
 After walk drinks were enjoyed at the Blue Bell Inn at Halkyn, where the Bass bitter went down well. The cider went down well later!
 Overall a good walk to be repeated many times in the future, it may even come to challenge the many Great Orme's walks that we do!

Thursday, 11 December 2014

Grindley Brook and Marbury 11th December 2014

A trig point on top of one of our first sighted "drumlins"?
Looking across the Cheshire Plain.
Between drumlins?
Looking across Marbury Mere towards Marbury Church.
A successful gate man at work!
The Hollyhurst Monument near Marbury.
The final climb alongside the Gridley Brook Locks.
Walk stats: Distance: 9.2 miles. Climb: 633'.
Time: 4 hours 35 minutes. On the move walking average: 2.4 m.p.h. Overall walk average: 2.0 m.p.h.
Group: Martyn, Tim, David S., Phil and Annie.
Weather prospects suggested that it would be quite windy with a 10% chance of rain. Thankfully both were wrong, very little wind and only a few spot of rain as approached lunch at Marbury church.
 This proved quite a varied walk and not as much mud as we have experienced in the past when walking in this area in Winter months.
 We had a "drumlins" master class as we headed along the South Cheshire Way towards Marbury. Kettlewells came into the conversation too!
 Lunch was taken at Marbury Church where two seats under the Lychgate were very welcome. 
If we repeated the walk in the Summer months, then the seats opposite the Swan Inn in Marbury would be another good lunch spot.
 Birds seen or heard today included: Common blackbird, Woodpigeon, House sparrow, Fieldfae, European robin, Canada goose, Mallard, Black-headed gull, Great crested grebe, Great tit and Goldfinch.
 After walk drinks were enjoyed at the Horse and Jockey at Grindley Brook, where eight different real ales were on offer. An Autumn stout went down well, as did others!
 A good walk, one to be repeated, especially if you aren't the driver!

Tuesday, 9 December 2014

Harris Hikers Annual walk and Meal 2015

Date for your dairy.
Thursday 5th February 2015.
Our annual "walkers" meal will be at the Wheatsheaf at Raby.
I have said that we will meet at the Wheatsheaf at about 09-30, have a short walk of about 5 miles to be back at the pub for 12-30.
As soon as they have the menus for 2015, they will e-mail me a copy which I will forward to anyone that has walked with the group, past or present, that wants to join us for the walk and the meat, or just for the meal.
As there are likely to be 15 of us for the meal, they have requested that we send them a list of our choices about a week before.

Thursday, 4 December 2014

Around Burton and More 4th DEcember 2014

Quaker graves in Burton Wood.
One of the many paths in Burton Wood.
One of the few field paths used today in order to link the Burton Walk and the Wirral Way.
Walk stats: Distance: 8.4 miles. Climb: 338'.
Time: 3 hours 47 minutes. On the move walking average: 2.9 m.p.h. Overall walk average: 2.2 m.p.h.
Group: Martyn, Annie, David S. and Phil.
The forecast for today suggested that the temperatures wouldn't get above about 5 Celsius, so we all made sure that we had our warm Winter gear on, including in some cases thermals to keep out the cold. Alas it seemed much warmer than that and after lunch I left my jacket in my rucksack for the rest of the walk.
 We had our usual challenge in Burton Wood trying to find the right paths described in the walk description. at least this time we did get to Mill Lane!
 Lunch was taken in Stanley Park, Neston, where Fran managed to find two park benches for us to have lunch in comfort. Phil kindly provided us with mince pies in celebration of his recent birthday. Thanks Phil, for most of us it was our first mince pie of this festive period.
 It was good to see that the scaffolding holding up the front of the former Mostyn School has been removed and Parkate's front is back to what it should look like.
 As usual the section adjacent to the reedbeds heading towards the Old Quay was muddy, but David S was still able to keep his new gaiters clean!
 Birds seen or heard today included: Common blackbird, European robin, Great tit, House sparrow Common starling, Woodpigeon, Jackdaw, Carrion crow, Mallard, Lapwing, Hen harrier, Pied wagtail, Grey wagtail and Goldfinch.
  After walk drinks were enjoyed at the Wheatsheaf at Raby, whereTrappers Hat and other brews were sampled.