Archive | February, 2017

Walks in Central Nottinghamshire: Walk 43 – Tracks around Boundary Wood near Blidworth and Rainworth

28 Feb

In Winter when the days are shorter and the paths muddier I try to find walks that are shorter and stick to firm tracks if possible.  This walk it stays on good tracks for nearly all of the way and is a pleasant enough way of spending an hour or two.

Start: You could start this walk in the villages of Blidworth or Rainworth and reach the circuit after around 15 minutes but if coming by car I suggest parking in the car park at Haywood Oaks to the east of Blidworth on the road that goes from the village to the A614.  This is only a short walk and you can do a bit more walking on the tracks around Haywood Oaks if you want or even combine this walk with one of the others of mine in the area – walks 12,13 and 15.

Route of the Walk

Distance: 3.3 miles

From the Haywood Oaks car park cross the road from Blidworth and join the track on the other side.  Turn left along this for fifty yards until you reach the wide main track going downhill away from the road.  After 300 yards this turns left at the bottom of the hill.   Keep to the main track for another 100 yards until you see a post with a yellow top on the right of the track.  Turn right to this post crossing a path with a Robin Hood Way marker on it,  At the yellow-topped post you reach a track by some woods.  Turn left along this quite wide track.  After 100 yards you see a narrower path to the right going into the woods.  You can take this path which cuts the corner of the wider tracks for.  If you stay on the straight path then you soon come to another wide path where you turn right and go up a slight rise for 100 yards.

At the top you reach a solid-looking green metal barrier.  Either go over the low part of this or through the gap on the left and carry on ahead.  You leave the wood behind and enter a more open area of grass with fields to your right.  Go straight on along the clear track which gradually descends for 400 yards.  Ahead you will see a hill with trees which is the Boundary Wood area we will be visiting later.  As you come to the bottom the track turns quite sharply to the left and you should stay on it.  The track now starts to rise again with trees closer again on the left and the hill of Boundary Wood on your right.  Stay on the track for the next half mile as it turns a few times.  On your left through the trees you will see a few small paths going through to the playing fields near Blidworth village and the houses on the edge of the village.

As you reach the last of the trees on the left you come to a more open area where our track meets the wider track of National Cycle Route 6.  At this point you will see to the left of the path an information board about the wood and tracks in the area.  The track now overlooks a pond to the left which is covered in rushes.  Stay on the main track until you are about level with the end of the pond.  Ahead on the main track you will see a barrier just before the route becomes tarmac on its way to Rainworth.  Don’t go as far as the barrier.  Instead look to the right where you will see a less distinct but still clear path going up the hill into Boundary Wood.

Go up this path which soon starts to run between trees.  It is mainly grassy but can be a little churned up by equine and human activity.  This is the only part of the walk where you will encounter much mud but it is easy enough to go around it.  After 300 yards you reach a wider path going to the right.  Turn right to keep going uphill this path which can again be a little muddy although the mud can be avoided without difficulty.

After 150 yards you reach a better, firmer path and soon a junction of tracks.  Turn left to go up a little more along a firm track.  Although the views are limited by the conifer trees there is a good margin from the path so things don’t feel claustrophobic as they sometimes can in woods of this type.  After 300 yards the path turns sharply to the right.  You can get a slightly better view of the surrounding countryside now as the trees have thinned out ahead and you are at the top of the hill.  Follow the track as it turns to the right and keep going in this direction for 400 yards passing a bench on the right of the track, until you reach a corner where the track turns ninety degrees to the right.  At the corner instead of staying on the main track look for a narrow path on the left going into the trees.  This is not an official track but it has been so well-used that the path is very clear.  It goes steeply down the bank through the trees before emerging near a bench in open ground.

At this lower level you can see the nearby fields on the left more clearly.  At the bottom of the slope you have come down turn right to follow a decent track with the bank of trees on your right.  After 200 yards you turn left along the clear track and keep following that until it turns to the right again after another 300 yards.  You can carry on along this main track until you reach the main junction which you walked past early in the walk.  However, you can cut this corner by descending left along a narrow, but clear, track through the bushes.  This goes down into a dip which can be wet at the very bottom but that is only a narrow channel which you should be able to step or jump over.  If you take this short cut come out of the dip to meet the track you followed downhill near the start of the walk from the green barrier.   If you have ignored the short cut, at the junction turn left and after 100 yards meet the path out of the dip.

Whichever way you have taken, now you should go back up the path you descended earlier, coming to the green barrier.  From there retrace your steps to the start of the walk.