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Those blue remembered hills - South Shropshire Walks

Those blue remembered hills - South Shropshire Walks


Postby smirnie71 » Mon Feb 18, 2013 1:08 pm

Date walked: 15/02/2013

Time taken: 4

Distance: 17 km

Ascent: 616m

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Hills included on this walk: Pole Bank (Marilyn, Dewey)
Date: 15/2/2013
Distance: 17 km
Ascent: 616 m

LongMynd15Feb.gpx Open full screen  NB: Walkhighlands is not responsible for the accuracy of gpx files in users posts



It's maybe a bit cliche but here comes the obligatory A.E. Housman quote from A Shropshire Lad:
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“Into my heart an air that kills
From yon far country blows:
What are those blue remembered hills,
What spires, what farms are those?

That is the land of lost content,
I see it shining plain,
The happy highways where I went
And cannot come again.”
― A.E. Housman, A Shropshire Lad

Luckily for me I haven't lost my content with the Shropshire Hills. For the last four years I have spent many a happy day tramping through heather and wandering over gleaming tors. Sitting on the Devils Chair on the Stiperstones nursing a brew and watching the sunset in the west over the rolling Welsh Hills, fighting up Caer Caradoc in howling winds and wandering off paths into the hidden valleys of the Long Mynd. I can't count how many miles I have wandered on these hills and for a while I even became a little complacent about them, my heart yearning for the rocky excitement of Snowdonia.

Last week I managed to get away from it all on the Long Mynd and made some more memories of those blue remembered hills.
It was a glorious, sunny Friday morning and I had a meeting at Carding Mill Valley so I packed my gear and headed off. The day and time meant the valley was pretty quiet. After what turned out to be a successful meeting I grabbed my pack and changed a la Clark Kent in the ladies. Suit off, walking garb on and I'm smiling. I lobbed my shop bought prawn sandwich and Cadbury mini rolls in my pack and headed off without a real plan other than to explore areas I hadn't been to before and get in a bit of ascent.

Just pass the visitor centre I crossed the stream via a wooden foot bridge and passed the ford. To my right was a rocky looking spur heading up between Bodbury Hill and Haddon Hill. This ticked both the ascent and terra incognita boxes so I hauled my way up and enjoyed the views that unfolded around me.

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The spur as it evens out a little with Cow Ridge in the back ground on the right.

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From left to right The Lawley, Caer Caradoc and Hope Bowdler Hill with the golf course in the foreground.

Once at the top of the spur I headed North East up Haddon Hill on to it's heather clad plateau, crossed a path and plodded through dense heather to reach the Shropshire Way which forms a wide undulating track along the Mynd.
In terms of ascent that was the hard work done. The rest of the day would be spent on gentle, rolling plateaus until the steep descent to Carding Mill Valley.

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Gentle rolling plateau of the Long Mynd

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Not only a perfect day for this walker but the gliding club was very busy too.

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Grassy track leading over Minton Hill to Packstone Hill

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Looking from Minton Hill at Callow Hill
After the obligatory tap on the trig point at Pole Bank and a quick bite (of my sandwich, not the trig point!) I had intended to walk down past the Gliding Club however as I wandered along the road from Pole Cottage which also forms part of the Shropshire Way on this section, I was attracted by a promising green ribbon heading over Minton Hill. Although the Shropshire Way follows the road you can walk on a nice, grassy verge most of the way, however the road is busy and I wanted to get away from the cars whizzing past.
The green ribbon was grassy but also muddy in places. Nevertheless it made for a lovely stroll over Minton Hill and Packstone Hill. A circular jaunt around a largely unvisited hill.

From here I back tracked to Pole Bank, down to a track leading East to the Burway and at the car park on the left headed North, then East to find the top of the spur heading from Cow Ridge down the valley floor.
The view that greeted me made me laugh out loud. a perfectly formed, steep spur to finish the walk with a little excitement. The initial walk down the grass was easy but steep and although only short there are sections on this spur when it's a bit airy with drops on either side. Maybe it was because of that that I ended up bum shuffling down the short rocky section at the bottom.
Back on the valley floor I wobbled back to the car on my jelly legs a very happy walker.
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Steep, rocky and a bit airy in places. A great descent into the valley from Cow Ridge.

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Carding Mill Valley and Motts Road winding up over the Mynd
[socialhiking]http://www.shareyouradventure.com/map/os/SmirnieOutdoors/Track-15-Feb-2013-1124[/socialhiking]
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smirnie71
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Re: Those blue remembered hills - South Shropshire Walks

Postby ChrisW » Tue Feb 19, 2013 1:19 am

Lovely report Smirnie and a hike I would have loved myself. Wonderful rolling hills in all directions, sunshine and prawn sarnies....what more could anyone want :lol:
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Re: Those blue remembered hills - South Shropshire Walks

Postby garyhortop » Tue Feb 19, 2013 7:04 pm

Nice report Smirnie....did the pole bank walk today although a slightly different route, but can't quite match the quality of photo's!! Will post my report at the weekend as on a weeks break in Shropshire. :D
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Re: Those blue remembered hills - South Shropshire Walks

Postby malky_c » Tue Feb 19, 2013 9:11 pm

Enjoyed this :) . I whizzed over here on the bike last summer and was pretty impressed by the steepness of some of the valleys, despite the dodgy weather. I'd like to go back at a more reasonable pace sometime - there seem to be loads of variations possible.
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Re: Those blue remembered hills - South Shropshire Walks

Postby smirnie71 » Wed Feb 20, 2013 8:20 am

ChrisW wrote:sunshine and prawn sarnies....what more could anyone want :lol:

I'd have liked some fruit cake and a brew as well but I suppose four chocolate minirolls was more than adequate, hehe :wink:
It was a cracking day and should you ever get the chance I'd recommend the area.
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Re: Those blue remembered hills - South Shropshire Walks

Postby smirnie71 » Wed Feb 20, 2013 8:22 am

garyhortop wrote:Nice report Smirnie....did the pole bank walk today although a slightly different route, but can't quite match the quality of photo's!! Will post my report at the weekend as on a weeks break in Shropshire. :D
Well chosen holiday destination Gary! :clap: :clap: It was a beautiful county and I keep reeturning ever since my childhood. Consider myself lucky to live within sight of these hills.
Photos all taken on my wee Ayephone 4s so really happy with them :D
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Re: Those blue remembered hills - South Shropshire Walks

Postby smirnie71 » Wed Feb 20, 2013 8:26 am

malky_c wrote:I'd like to go back at a more reasonable pace sometime - there seem to be loads of variations possible.

I remember reading your reports about Shropshire hills and they were a great read as ever. The Mynd can be walked so many ways and I still haven't discovered the far ends of it or linked it with say the Stiperstones. Can't believe I once got to the stage when I thought it was boring but that may be cos I wasn't fit enough to build in more ascent or brave enough to go off the beaten track so to speak.
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Re: Those blue remembered hills - South Shropshire Walks

Postby clivegrif » Wed Mar 06, 2013 9:52 pm

Ah lovely stuff there Smirnie, spent many a happy hour on the Mynd and surrounding hills.

Cracking pics by the way. :clap:
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Re: Those blue remembered hills - South Shropshire Walks

Postby smirnie71 » Thu Mar 07, 2013 10:37 am

clivegrif wrote:Ah lovely stuff there Smirnie, spent many a happy hour on the Mynd and surrounding hills.

Cracking pics by the way. :clap:
Thanks Clive! It is a fabulous wee hill with so many route options. Have spent so much time here but feel I've barely scratched the surface. Pics all taken on my ayephone so can't grumble, haven't invested in a camera for years. :D
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