A gentle walk after yesterday’s exertions. It’s too warm to do much else! We park in the car park at Goodrich Castle and head off for Coppet Hill, one of the largest Commons in Herefordshire. From the top there are great views west into Wales and north to Ross. We pause for a moment before dropping down through Coldwell Woods to the River Wye.
Symonds Yat Rock towers above us as we sit in the shade at the edge of the woods. Peregrine falcons wheel and swoop through the haze. Other than the herd quietly grazing by the River, the silence is complete. We enjoy lunch and soak up the sun for a while. We’re finally disturbed as the cows lazily approach…memories of Denham are still fresh so we gather our stuff together and resume our walk.
From here our route follows the languid meanderings of the Wye. Occasionally we can hear kayaks slip by quietly on the River, hidden by the trees along the banks. The first real sign of life is the Youth Hostel at Welsh Bicknor. Welsh Bicknor was once an enclave of Wales in England thanks to the former Lord of the Manor, who had his land sequestered on account of being Catholic. As if losing your ancestral home is not enough, to have it assigned as Welsh must smart! It has to be said, the Youth Hostel is in an idyllic setting and several young families are busy making the most of the weather as we walk through.
It’s mid afternoon by the time we make it to Kerne Bridge and we miss the footpath beyond that would have taken us on a loop around the castle, back to the car. Instead we follow the B4229 back to Goodrich and the Castle. Periodically we’re jumping into the hedge to dodge the on-coming traffic. However it doesn’t spoil a good day. A quick drink at the cafe and a relaxing 8.7 mile stroll on a beautifully warm day is perfectly complete!
Goodrich picture gallery (more pictures on Flickr):
Distance: 8.7 miles ; Difficulty: Easy
Coordinates for Satnav: HR6 0DW