This was the first walk of our new 6-month programme, taking us up to the end of the year. The theme is Landmarks.
The landmark for this walk was Hadrian’s Wall. Heard of it? Good.
We did this walk earlier in the year, in May, and it was a glorious green, spring day and a jolly good walk. This time, in August the walk was just as good but the surroundings lusher and full. Still green though.
Walking up through the lower reaches of the Haltwhistle Burn was like walking in a cool green tunnel as the trees fringing the river banks met overhead, filtering the sunlight. I would happily do this walk three or four times a year just for this mile-long stretch alone.
However, it ended and we were bathed in sunlight as we reached a steep footpath up to the Military Road. Crossing this, we struck out northwards heading for Cawfields Quarry. This handy little site provides welcome toilet facilities and picnic tables beside the deep dark pond that now fills the quarry workings.
The route out from here takes you up a steep little gully with the remnants of the Wall clearly visible and Milecastle 42 standing rather drunkenly on a grassy slope. This raised walk gives you great views North and South as you follow the wall eastwards using a well-worn footpath. This is nice accessible walking that still manages to take you out to the wilds of Northumberland.
At the end of this section, the walk hairpins back on itself, across sheep pasture and conveniently brings you out by the Milecastle Inn. We stopped for refreshment. It would have been rude not to.
Continuing along the Military Road we picked up the footpath that took us back down to Haltwhistle, back through the green tunnel.