Archive | July, 2016
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Walks in Central Nottinghamshire – Walk 37 – Circuit of Eakring

8 Jul

A walk starting from the village but then going around the edge of Eakring using paths and tracks in the surrounding fields.  The walk passes by a large pond and Mompesson Cross.  It can be extended to the nature reserve at Duke’s Wood by combining it with Walk 18 in this blog.

Start: Eakring Church in the centre of the village.  Eakring is on the number 28B bus route from Mansfield which is hourly during the day.  The main street in Eakring (Kirklington Road) is fairly quiet and wide and you should be able to find somewhere on the street to park.

Distance: 4.5 miles

Map of the Route

From the church walk south, away from the man junction at the centre of the village along the pavement on the church side of the road.   After about 500 yards, just past Side Lane on the other side of the road, you should turn left along a grassy track.  There is a footpath sign but in summer this is likely to be obscured by plants. Just after the track you should look for a house on the with a small white gate and the track is immediately before this. If you look behind you along the main road at this point you should see a sign for Side Lane on the other side of the main road about fifty yards away.

Turn left along the grass track and after fifty yards you reach a metal barrier. Go to the gap at the left of this, turn left and follow the path at the left hand edge of the field.  From here you can see on your right at the top of the field a row of pylons of various types which have been developed as part of a pilot scheme for new designs.

New pylon designs

W New pylon designs

Go past a white-topped post bearing a waymark for the footpath and leave this field to go into another one.  In summer the crops will be  close to the field edge but there will be a decent margin to walk along as you continue along the edge of the field.  On your left are trees.  You meet a path coming from the right which was part of my walk 18 and if you have done the longer walk to Duke’s Wood will cross this walk here.  On this walk we carry on along the field margin ignoring the path going left into the wood.  A little further along the official path bears slightly off to the left from the field and goes a little downhill although you can carry on along the edge of the field.  The official path can be a little overgrown at the height of summer and after wet weather a bit muddy.  However, as you go down you enter a nice tree covered area.  On your left  a little below you is a pond and stream with just beyond some houses.  The path goes down a little then rises again and rejoins the field edge.  Following the field edge now takes you downhill to a green metal barrier just before a road.  Go to the left hand side of the barrier which is much lower and which you can step over.

There is a small grassy area before the road which you meet on a bend.  This gives you the chance to check the traffic before continuing straight on along the road.  There isn’t any pavement or walkway here so stay on the right hand side of the road near the hedge.  There isn’t a great deal of traffic but you should take care.  Walk along the road for 200 yards until you reach a sharp bend to the right where you should leave the road and go straight on onto a gravel track.  Ignore the path going off to the left immediately after leaving the road and carry straight on along the wide track.  Go past a barrier and along the straight track, ignoring paths to left and right after 150 yards.  You enter an area of more open farmland. After400 yards from the road you will see a wooden footpath post to the right of the track just before a sign indicating that the way beyond is private.  This is the first of several of these signs near the route which are useful in keeping you on the right course although a little unfriendly.

From the track go right into a large arable field.  As I was doing this walk the crops in the field were high enough that the way across the field was obvious as the path across was well maintained and several feet wide. If it is not clear aim at about 45 degrees from the gravel track for400 yards aiming towards a pylon, until you reach another Private sign next to a wide concrete bridge over a stream.  Turn left and cross the bridge to join another wide gravel track.  On the Ordnance Survey map the path here goes off slightly to the right but it is easier to stick to the main track. Follow the track as it runs straight for the next  600 yards.  Initially it runs between fields but then you reach a line of trees on the left of the track which starts to go uphill.  Carry on until you reach an oak tree on the right of the track.  Turn left off the track here to go through a wide gap in the hedge.  I couldn’t see any footpath signs here but the route was clear as again the path was a good, wide one through the crops.  Head across the field aiming for the left hand end of the wood ahead of you.  You reach the wood (Lound Wood) after 400 yards.

At the wood go straight on and Follow the edge of the field with the wood immediately on your right for 200 yards.  Then turn left away from the wood at an angle of 45 degrees  across the field, again on a very obvious path when I did the walk, for 200 yards until you reach a hedge. Turn left and follow a path covered with quite long grass at the edge of the field with a hedge on the right.  After 200 yards you reach a wooden bridge which you cross to reach a grass path near a large pond, sometimes known as Eakring Flash, which you can see thorough the trees on your left.  Follow the path which was fine when I walked it but which I imagine could be underwater after a period of very wet weather.  There is a hedge on the right and trees  on the left.  You will get occasional views through to the pond which often has swans and ducks on it.

Eakring Flash Pond

Eakring Flash Pond

After 200 yards leave the pond and turn right over another wooden bridge.  Go into a grass field and follow the path in shorter grass next to the hedge on the left for 100 yards until you reach a wooden stile which you go over.

Go across a track then over a stile and down into a grass field.  Go round the barrier into the main part of the field.  Go uphill to the right aiming at the top right hand corner of the field with the tower of an old windmill a prominent feature ahead.  Near the top of the field there are a few clumps of nettles and thistles but you can skirt round these.  Leave the field and go out onto a road.  Go straight across this quiet road to another stile on the opposite side.  This stile takes you into another field after going through a kissing gate.  However, the stile is a very big step up and is tricky to manage.  You may well find it easier to climb over the gate next to the stile to go into the field.  This field can be a bit muddy at the bottom at times, especially if horses have been using it and churning up the ground.  On my recent visit it was fine.  Go uphill for fifty yards to reach another  gate and go through that into another field.  Carry on uphill through this field for 200 yards and out via another gate.  This takes you to an open field and a wide track coming across you.  From here you can look back and see the last mile of the route you have just walked with good views to the east beyond.

Looking back on the route towards Lound Wood

Looking back on the route towards Lound Wood

 

Turn left along this firm track and follow it straight for 400 yards.  This brings you to the road going into the village which you cross to reach the entrance road of Eakring Farms, which is indicated by a sign. The route on the other side is a little dependent on the crops in the fields.  If you can see an obvious path across the field going almost straight ahead then you should follow that to the other side of the field and Mompesson Cross, enclosed by a fence, about 300 yards away.  Sometimes the way ahead isn’t clear due to crops.  In this case the best thing to do is to follow the entrance road to Eakring Farms which almost immediately bends to the left.  After 100 yards you reach a big barn on the right.  Turn off the road just before the barn and walk along the concrete next to the barn where there is a bit of a gap until you reach the far end of the barn.  From here continue roughly straight on across the field.  After a short way you come close to the metal fencing surrounding Mompesson Cross, which I mentioned in Walk 18.  There is an information board about the Cross nearby.  From the cross go left through the trees to reach a track.

Turn right so that you are going slightly uphill away from Eakring.  Follow this track for 300 yards where first it bends to the right then left before running straight for 500 yards until you reach a corner.  Here there is a small clump of trees and a small log bench. This is a nice spot for a rest.  Turn sharp left to follow the track alongside the hedge, going slightly downhill for 250 yards.  At the end of the hedge there is a sharp turn right on the track. If you wish to go up to Duke’s Wood to follow the extra loop described in my Walk 18 (adding just under 3 miles) then follow this track to the right.

To take the shorter route, at the sharp corner where the track turns right up the hill, go straight on for ten yards across the grass where you will find yourself at the end of a wide grassy track with trees along the right hand side. Turn left to follow this track straight for 200 yards until you reach a  nearby metal gate with a  gap to the left ot it. Go through and continue straight along the track which becomes a metalled driveway with houses on the left. After another 100 yards you reach a road on a bend.   Carefully cross the road  (this is Kirklington Road again) to the pavement opposite and turn left to head into the village.

After 300 yards as you reach the main area of houses look for the grass track going off to the right which you walked along earlier.  Continue along the road to the church where you started.