Simonside 9th October 2016

Another in our series of Autumn 2016 moorland walks – this time way up in Northumberland near to the lovely town of Rothbury. After a bit of a twisty turny drive through sunshine and showers we arrived at Lordenshaws car park.  There were plenty of cars parked up in this remote little place and we squeezed into a space.

Straightaway we were on the up – climbing stone steps and muddy pathways for about a mile up through the heather to Dove Crag with its sculptured outcrops and stunning views over north Northumberland. We met a few fellow walkers enjoying the Autumn sunshine along this popular route and there were plenty of pictures taken.

We stopped here for lunch.

After our break we continued along the [strange] stone pathway through some of the boggier, flat areas on the plateau before striking out for Simonside itself. After a few celebratory photos we descended the steep, knee-jarring steps to the foothills and the forest track.

The second leg of the walk was completed under the canopy of trees – both deciduous and coniferous – with a carpet of late bilberries brushing our ankles. These dark, pine scented woods are reminiscent of childhood fairy tales straight out of the Black Forest with rustling movements in the undergrowth and shadows playing through the dense stands of resinous trunks.

After heading back to the car we decided on a pit stop at Rothbury and the excellent Tomlinson’s café.

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