This always seems like the most ‘tucked away’ part of the Chilterns…perhaps because it takes us so long to get here. Anyway, walking around here is always good and today was no exception. It’s been a while since we walked any hills…Bedfordshire and North Hertfordshire are both flat…and to tell the truth, it was a struggle in places. Nevertheless its good to get back to walking in the woods and the outward stretch is pretty much all woods. It’s great to watch the seasons tick by and today it feels like spring is just around the corner.
The descent to Bryant’s Bottom is steep, quickly followed by the climb out of the valley and down to Upper North Dean. The sun’s out and we’re starting to feel it. The long climb up to Speen leaves us both ‘admiring the view’ on the way up. At the top we meet a fellow walker who must be a good 20 years older than us. He’s walked up from Bradenham and because the weather is looking good is deciding whether to extend his walk out as far as Lodge Hill, on the far side of the next valley! We leave him to his contemplation. No need to reveal just how out of breath we really are.
We skirt Speen…famous for not much apart from, perhaps, its Home of Rest for Horses. Horses wounded in the IRA bombing of the Household Cavalry were brought here to retire which, so local websites claim, became quite an attraction for animal lovers. I don’t get the ‘animal lover’ thing but I don’t begrudge them a happy retirement in this corner of the Chilterns. If I could afford it, I’d retire here too.
Another valley and we’re up and back at Lacy Green and its windmill. A thoroughly enjoyable 8.1 mile Spring walk…typically Chilterns.
Bryant’s Bottom picture gallery (more pictures on Flickr):
Distance: 8.4 miles ; Difficulty: Moderate
Postcode for Satnav: HP27 0PG