Thursday, 16 March 2017

Two Churches walk and trees

In my usual disorganised fashion, I set off too late for today's stroll, especially as it turned out to be an eleven miler, making it up as I ambled along. I took profound pleasure watching buzzards, a kestrel, a few red kites, a jay, dozens of rooks, a sky lark or two (it may well have been just the one, as I'm pretty sure he was following me. Paranoid?) blackbirds in delightfully full voice, and a deceit of lolloping lapwings. On the ground there were Belted Galloway Pigs, dozens of rather smart horses and indeterminate sheep. I'm not sure what the fluffy beggars are around these parts but some are quite large so perhaps they're Texel crosses? I shall make an effort to find out.


With the recent fine weather the sloppy mud in my northern patch is working down to a sticky clay and managed to walk its way up the inside legs of my trousers to about knee height. When it gets up to my goolies I'll stick them in the washing machine. The trousers.


At Chawridge Bank, an ancient meadow and nature reserve, there are signs saying visitors require a permit, but having looked at the website there's no mention of this. I shall have a poke about on my next visit as it looks interesting.

I had been looking forward to the comfortable bench at Westleymill Ford but some blighter has pinched it! I continued my plod onwards to Tickleback Row with a somewhat disconsolate air. 

The topmost part of my patch just clips the flightpath from Heathrow, with the end of the runway barely ten miles away. You notice the planes flying out and fortunately they're high enough to be interesting but not a nuisance.


You will have seen these trees on here before. You may well see them again as I love them. Whoever planted them did rather well. At the moment Bracknell Forest Council seems to be doing its level best to cut down all the ancient oaks and cedars dotted about the place. Someone ought to do something about this.



The soil around these parts is quite heavy. Low lying fields hold water for weeks in the winter and in the summer the ground is as hard as iron. Three labradors and a couple of spaniels took great delight splashing about in the wheel ruts just after I took this snap. They came out plastered in mud. A little later I saw them in a very smart midnight blue Range Rover with cream leather upholstery as they drove past in a fury of barking and mud splattered windows. 

Schadenfreude is a beautiful thing.



Happily, at the moment it's light enough to walk comfortably until about seven o'clock, and I scuttled home in the gloaming to catch my evening fix of the Archers. 


All the pictures were taken on my phone. It's fine, as far as it goes but pretty hopeless if you want to zoom in as the only thing that happens is an electronic cropping of pixels. 

The new boots - you do need to know this - have now clocked up a hundred miles, and all is fine and dandy.

And now, in the spirit of Old Mortality:


  1. A lovely afternoon and early evening stroll. You better watch you don't wear your new boots out before the start of TGO at this rate ;-)

    1. I got two thousand miles out of my old Scarpa Nepals. I can't see quite so many coming from these, as the vibram seems slightly softer, but at the moment there's absolutely no sign of any wear at all.
      I think they'll probably outlast my knees.

  2. It's good to keep going through the winter, particularly as it starts to turn into spring. I don't always feel like it on the wet, blustery days but - fitness wise - you can quickly lose what takes a long time to gain. Thing is, once I'm out I'm always glad I've made the effort.

    I do sometimes envy those who live within sight of their chosen hills, but it's not an option for all of us.

    1. I was looking out of the window at lunchtime and it was gloomy, cold, blowy and all rather horrid, when your comment popped into my inbox.
      It filled me with guilt, Sir. So I tied myself into the boots, popped on a jacket and ten miles later felt considerably better with the world.
      Cheers Dave!

    2. 10 miles? Did you say 10 miles? In an afternoon? Shit.

    3. My walks are invariably afternoon affairs as by the time I finally stir my stumps lunch beckons, and I am a slave to her.
      I generally manage to get out by three, which means I'm usually chasing the sunset (and losing) before I return in time for the Archers.
      It was certainly a blow to find the missing bench at the halfway point. A chap needs to rest, and this was the only bench on this particular circuit.

  3. Sneaky,sneaky, sneaky! You describe this as a "stroll". I know what you are up to. This was full on Challenge training so you can put me to shame in May. Well it may work, sir. The leg became dicky again last week. But I shall have it fettled before long. Just you see.

  4. No rucsacks were deployed in any of these action sequences, Sir.
    Miss Whiplash is probably beasting poor Lord Elpus around some Northern Estate as I tap on this tiny keypad. He'll be ballasted by her larder of tinned comestibles, suffering, with the words "You'll thank me for this in May!" ringing in his ears.

  5. Some photos there Mr Sloman - really like the one of the curved track and water reflection


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