Thursday, 15 July 2010

A Quick One (or Two) .....

This weekend, like last, we were busy entertaining, so, as well as all the usual chores that needed doing everything had to be ship-shape in time for our friends’ arrival, with the kettle full and dinner preparations well underway. Even though I was all-to-easily distracted by the appearance of a pair of Spotted Flycatchers in the garden, everything was ready in plenty of time and we were looking forward to enjoying a relaxing couple of days.

However, this did mean our scope for walking was slightly truncated so we had to adjust our plans accordingly. With only an hour or so to spare, one of the most rewarding objectives is Roundton Hill, a modest top with a big personality that punches well above its weight.

From the Nature Reserve car park the path zig-zagged steeply up the hill where far-reaching views can be found from its craggy summit. The recent lengthy spell of fine, warm weather was forecast to break after the weekend and cloud was already building in preparation, but even on such a day the 360º panorama included the Long Mynd, the Stiperstones, Corndon Hill, the Berwyns and the Kerry Ridgeway, with Snowdonia and the Brecon Beacons visible in better conditions.

In a strengthening breeze and with the threat of rain in the air we descended the steep path on north side of the hill and joined the lane that led back round towards the Nature Reserve. Later that evening, we went into Bishop’s Castle and stumbled across the Real Ale Festival – an unexpected surprise to find an even wider selection of excellent beers than usual.

Next day, after a lazy morning, we walked a short route from Little Stretton to Carding Mill Valley and back. It was sunny again, and hot; the humidity only just held in check by the breeze. But it was good to be out and getting some fresh air, added to which we discovered one or two new paths that we might be able to incorporate into a longer circuit in future; a nice relaxing couple of days to see us through the week ahead.

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