Sue and Martin in Mallorca 2019

Sue and Martin in Mallorca 2019
On the Archduke's Path in Mallorca

Wednesday, 28 December 2022

Monday 26 December 2022 - Around Appleton

This 10km walk around Appleton has become a favourite outing just a 20 minute drive from home. I discovered it whilst doing a bit of editing for Jen Darling (Best Pub Walks in Cheshire). We normally start from the London Bridge Inn (there's off road parking nearby), but today we saved a bit of fuel and time by taking junction 10 of the M56 and parking near the first roundabout, on Stonehill Close.

Our last visit was on 2 January 2022, recorded here, on a rather less sunny day than we enjoyed on this current visit.

Hillside Farm looks a fairly friendly place. Our path crosses a stile at the farm entrance and passes a friendly bin (the picture is for Isabella, who loves bins with eyes) before skirting the farm buildings on a good footpath.

After passing lots of empty duck houses we reached 'Bellfields', where the sandstone pillar is reputed to mark the spot where Cromwell's horse was buried after being killed in a skirmish nearby in 1648. This is our usual 'refreshment' point, but today we reached it far too soon for that.

The path beside a golf course to Hillcliffe was well lit by the winter sun.

Views over the Fox Covert cemetery extend over various of Warrington's landmarks and on to Winter Hill, a good ten miles to the north.

Here we are at the lychgate, through which the tall spire of Warrington's parish church can be seen.

A familiar route through the ginnels of the 'Rabbit Run' brought us out opposite the London Bridge Inn, from where we usually start this walk.

Just beyond The Cheshire Cat, Molly 'B' was moored (pictured at the head of this posting), and beyond that the massive bulk of Rack & Ruin looked set to go cruising, had the whole place not been deserted apart from the odd dog walker.

After leaving the canal at Lumb Brook, we soon entered the Millennium Green, where there was a choice of benches from which to enjoy a coffee break in the sun at our 5km half way point.

The woodland walk through the Dingle and Ford's Rough was delightful. Not too muddy, and winter sun beaming through the leafless branches.

Sue found an immense log on which to stand rather precariously!

Back down to earth, she then proceeded to photograph a selection of fungi during the walk to Ford's Rough.

At the start of Ford's Rough is a new footpath sign, dedicated: 
In Memory of David Heath 1943 - 2022
A Keen Walker
Nature Lover
and PNFS Volunteer
He will be missed by his Friends
And sometimes by his Wife

Sadly, on exiting Lumb Brook Valley and reaching Green Lane, we failed again to trace the old footpath that seems to have been obliterated by a new housing estate. However, the path by Dipping Brook to Cann Lane is a satisfactory alternative.*

Here are some of Sue's fungi.

Velvet Foot (Flammulina velutipes)

Crowded Parchment (Stereum complicatum)

Green Cheese Polypore (Fomitopsis spraguei)
Stump Brittlestem (Psathyrella piluliformis)

We continued amiably along the good path beside Pewterspear Lane, soon reaching the roundabout beyond which the car was parked in Stonehill Close.

An excellent 10km outing, with minimal ascent - here's the route we took.

* Those with Jen's 'Best Pub Walks' 3rd edition should go to page 25 and replace the wording from 'Cross the bridleway...reach Cann Lane' with the following:

'Turn right along the bridleway and continue a short distance to a small 'Welcome' to our woods sign on the left. Follow this narrow but clear woodland path until it reaches Cann Lane.' It's a very pleasant path.


Sir Hugh said...

Looks like an unexpectedly good walk considering it surrounds a large urban are. I'm impressed by Sue's ability to get on top of that log!

Phreerunner said...

Yes Conrad, Sue carefully hid her rope and clips.

Anonymous said...

AlanR. Love the shadows shot and the fungi too. I seem to recall some of that walk. I probably did it with you.

Phreerunner said...

Quite likely Alan, we've done that walk a few times.