Paleolithic rock shelter.

Wednesday, December 20, 2006

Trosley Country Park Anniversary winter solstice walk

Coldrum Stones Megalithic tomb
Ancient Yew trees reaching out for sun light

Who's the short geezer?(Rolo)son of Graham the Keeper of oil fired boilers .

As you can see from the pictures, it is cold and frosty and very misty,the sun is driving the mist away and losing the battle.Its a damp-cold that gets into the bones,so after our quick snack in the log cabin we get walking.we came this way on the same day last year,to celebrate the winter solstice at the burial tomb which is 4,000 years old.A muddy walk and a struggle up hill towards the end.we had more refreshments by the log-burner when we returned.
Good to get home and have a warm-up,still,its worth it and its good fun.

Tuesday, December 12, 2006

Harty Ferry Shellness Bird reserve

A windy coldish day with grey skies followed by the sun bursting out from behind the clouds.
We saw a Marsh Harrier on its own in the bird reserve.(usually a pair in flight)
A rather muddy walk,familiar to us from earlier in the year,which took us to the excellent Ferry Inn at Harty,where there was a log fire and very pretty girls serving.We had an excellent traditional meat pie for lunch and then carried on with the remainder of the 8 miles back to Leysdown.The wind became very strong as we walked along the top of the inner sea wall.

We passed over the new road bridge back towards Sittingbourne.A good walk of about 8 miles

Tuesday, December 05, 2006

Half marathon Charing

A 13 mile circular walk in the Charing Eastwell Challock area in the pouring rain,with temperatures of about 7 degrees C and a wind speed of 40 mph.Lots and lots of mud and slipping,and only one other person on foot in the rain,a young lady running with her dog.
Sorry no pictures because the camera would have gone rusty
Even getting there was difficult owing to flooding and the motorway being used to park the trucks for the Cross Channel ferries
the good spot was the thermos of hot coffee half way around
(don't ask me why this is underlined--I don't know) "deus ex machina "explains it

Wednesday, November 29, 2006

Knole Park Sevenoaks


The long and winding road through Knole Park sevenoaks.
We parked in the centre of Sevenoaks on market day and it was quite entertaining.
Using the Pathfinder guide we intercepted the published walk about half the way round.
After a mistake mapreading,we found the lovely Chestnut Walk so used this instead.
This was joined by another long avenue,so in for a pennie......
There were many deer in the park,who seemed not to be bothered by us too much.
We stopped by a fallen tree for our coffee and sandwiches and agreed that this was serendipity
and the walk was one of our most enjoyable so far.
The sky was clear and blue,the leaves thick underfoot,and there was no wind,it was about 8 degrees C.We did about 4 to 5 miles and then had alook around the market and stopped for a coffee in the town.

Thursday, November 23, 2006

Farthing common Tolsford and Postling

Folkestone with France in distance
notice the ships keeping to the right
hi res pic

A non-muddy footpath

Straggler and gate guardian

Tolsford micro tower

A lovely crisp breezy day ,with the sun providing occasional and welcome warmth
We left the car at Farthing common and set off down the North Downs way loop.
Reaching the top of the coombe after a steep climb,we had an excellent view of Postling village
450 feet below.We carried on to Tolsford hill and the microwave tower,where we paused for a cup of coffee from our flasks.Descending the hill ,the track was very muddy owing to 4 x 4 use ,
but we soon turned back towards Postling and on a good firm path.Through the village and back to the North Downs way a bit of a climb and then back over our previous tracks.
About 6 miles sunny with blue skies and a cold wind.back to Grove Green for lunch.

Tuesday, November 14, 2006


The rain and fog begin to roll in off the sea
We can use this agianst him at alater date

Well,-it started off mild and dry with a light wind.We set off up to the cliff top by the Martello tower and it was a long hard slog.However,we made the top OK and stopped off at the Battle of Britain memorial site and after a good look around we set off agin towards the east.Visibility was reducing out to sea,and a slight drizzle started.
After a while the waterproofs were donned,and the rain began in ernest. Another steep down and up and then along the cliff edge path,unble to see the waves but hear them hundreds of feet below.
A welcome surprise was the Clifftop Cafe which has reopened after cliff edge erosion.A very welcome mug of tea a rest and then off towards Dover.
After a while one of our party with more sense that the rest suggested that it was silly to continue visibility was only 20 feet.
So we turned around and went back.
The usual suspects fell over ,as it was now muddy and very slippery.
We changed into dry clothes (those equipped)and drove back to Maidstone where we had Fish and Chips in the warm.
Lots of laundry and drying-out tonight,but an interesting walk which we will re-do in the summer.

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

Ightham Mote and Oldbury Hillfort

A bit of a grey, damp, chilly day, in marked contrast to the brilliant sunshine of last week.
Lots of trees are being felled and logged,and as you can see by the group clustered around the map,things were not as remembered .Subsequently we(I) got a little lost at times .
Lots of hilly bits and even a couple of chaps on mountain bikes cycling uphill.
We parked at Ightham Mote, a 12th century half timbered building,and made our way to Olbury Hill Fort,a stone age outpost ,in use until the Romans took over .
A good defensive position,as we found,climbing up the slopes.
back to Ightham Mote and then to the Jungle cafe for a late lunch which was excellent.

Wednesday, November 01, 2006

Westerham and Chartwell a walk in the woods

This ,as you can see is a very steep footpath

An excellent sunny cold day ,a drive of about an hour to Westerham,to park in the village.
Past Winston Churchill's statue and across the beginnings of the River Darent to the top of the hill.
Looking back we could see the other side of the valley facing us,and the cold wind was clearing the air making for excellent visibility .Through the beech woods and past pretty little houses nestling in the trees. The hills were steep and demanding and the exercise kept us very warm.It is autumn and the forest floor was carpeted with leaves and the occasional fungi.We found a set of garden furniture in the woods placed especially for hikers,so we sat a while .
More steep ups and downs and then into Horsey Woods the sun shining through the branches .One last steep climb and then back down to Westerham.In the car park we again encountered two lady hikers ,we mentioned that we were going to lunch at the White Hart Brasted,and hoped to see some mention of the Battle of Britain pilots that used it as their watering hole in 1940.It turned out that one of the ladies was the daughter of the wartime publican at the White Hart and was au fait with all the history.What a coincidence.
The White Hart had been recconoitered recently and was well up to expectations.
The food was superb,and not expensive,the pub was very busy ,but coped well.
An excellent day out (as usual)

Saturday, October 28, 2006


Fairbourne Mill Harrietsham a chocolate box picture

All High res pix click to enlarge

We started a mile from the Railway station and after a 20 minute brisk walk arrived with 15 minutes to spare.
The ticket clerk gave us a group ticket for £1.90 each to Lenham
It was a lovely sunny day a bit chilly to start with no wind at all.The train was nice and warm,which didn't help us acclimatise!

From Lenham station(10 minutes ride)we set off on the Len Valley Walk and after a short stretch on a busy road we turned onto the path proper.A nice "Beware of the Bull"faced us but we are all used to Bull having been in the Civil Service.

The sun stayed low in the sky and we warmed up as we walked across the frosty fields.
Crossing the M20 motorway and the CTRL high speed rail link,we left the noise behind.
We saw a rabbit with mixamatosis that stayed still instead of running away from us.

Next we came to Fairbourne mill and took some chocolate box type pictures.
After a little amnesia re the route we stopped at Broomfield Church for our packed lunch,and then carried on into the environs of Leeds castle.Through Leeds village we encountered some ambiguity regarding the route and the footpath signs.We found a way through and then crossed down into Caring and then following the various rivulets back to Bearsted.
We did 11 miles and took 4.5 hours and were a little tired at the finish.
A memorable walk-perfect walking weather .

Wednesday, October 18, 2006

Shoreham Lullingstone River Darent

Roman Mosaic Lullingstone

A 7 mile circular walk with a steep uphill climb to start.Nice views of the valleys and the smell of woodsmoke from the country cottages.A preserved steam train blowing its whistle and the feather of steam from the boiler.After reaching the golf course the walk was more open and level or even downhill.there were some impressive Oak and Beech trees,just on the turn for autumn.
A mild day with a threat of rain,and dampness in the air and underfoot.
We stopped briefly at Lullingstone Roman Villa and had a peep inside.It has one of the best English mosaics of the period.
We then set off along the banks of the River Darent ,meeting quite a few people walking their dogs etc.The pics above show the lovely verdant countryside
Back through the village with its well preserved flint cottages ,to the car park and off home.
A nice challenging walk with kind weather and a little mud.

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

Back to Langdon Beach Dover

Just like a load of kids throwing rocks into the sea,climbing up the cliff face etc

Five of us revisit Langdon beach @ Dover Cliffs because its so exciting! A steep climb down (see photos) of about 100 metres and then down the vertical ladder at the old wartime searchlight battery in the cliff face.A misty rainy day ,but quite mild,and suprisingly not as exhausting a climb as in the summer.We revisited the Swingate public house and had a very nice roast lunch
served with the usual cheeriness.Only about 4 miles,maybe a longer walk next week.
As we left Dover the sun came out.