Grindon & Hamps / Manifold Valleys

March 9th: With the forecast for the day having steadily improved, 16 of us set off anticipating a mostly dry walk - and had our hopes exceeded by a good dose of sun, making for a T-shirt afternoon. That combined with some excellent limestone countryside and good company made for a great day out.

Starting at Grindon, Cathy led 16 of us south-west to the Hamps valley, enjoying (?) connoisseur-grade mud (read: this was one of the muddiest walks the group has done...) as well as assault-course grade stiles, every one testing new levels of dexterity and sure-footedness for those passing through.

From the Hamps we headed across green fields to the Manifold Valley via Green Farm (a village name) - noticing signs for other villages with evocative names, such as Back o' th' Brook or Waterhouses. On the map there's also a place called "Hell hole"...

We followed the Manifold Way north, having lunch on the way. On either side were impressive limestone features, including "Thor's Cave", a huge hole in the hillside. Nearing the walk's end we stopped at Wettonmill café for some refreshment, including some fantastic home-made cake, before heading back to Grindon and home. A great day out, thank you Cathy.

Andrew R.

Teabreak near the Hamps

Simon balancing members' needs

This way to the farm

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Looking along the Manifold river

Thor's cave

Cathy & Simon

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