Saturday 2 December 2017: East Finchley to the Woodberry Weltlands Centre

It was a grey but mild and dry morning when we set out from East Finchley tube station. We had a good turnout – there were 18 of us including late arrival Danny. Our gentle stroll started out through two pretty woods, Cherry Tree and Highgate woods and then proceeded along a disused railway line, the Parkland Walk Way, a very popular footpath with local families, dog walkers and joggers. The walkway Continue reading Saturday 2 December 2017: East Finchley to the Woodberry Weltlands Centre

BEACONSFIELD CIRCULAR – SATURDAY 25 NOVEMBER

A perfect late autumn  morning in the Chilterns with blue sky and sunshine and frost on the ground attracted 11 Poly Ramblers on Saturday. The walk was surprisingly level and took us through woods and field edge paths east from Beaconsfield to the village of Seer Green and then north to the 250 acre Hodgemoor Woods. It is easy to get lost in woods and Stuart and I almost managed it, having taken the wrong fork early on. But we managed to retrieve the situation with help from the GPS and were soon back on track heading down to the Harte and Magpies on the busy A355. The pub was very friendly and the food came promptly. The pub labrador came to sit under our table and Rob befriended her with chips. Continue reading BEACONSFIELD CIRCULAR – SATURDAY 25 NOVEMBER

Saturday 18th November, Boxhill to Dorking

Another fine autumn walk enjoyed by 8 Polyramblers on a day which remained mild and misty, with only the odd spot of rain. At Box Hill and West Humble station, there was a very large walking party assembling but we set off and never saw them again. We walked through Denbies vineyard and up onto Ranmore Common with great views over Dorking and Box Hill. The trees were a glorious colour and we had a carpet of autumn leaves underfoot. Dropping down into the valley, we passed Milton Court, a Grade II listed 17thC house, now the UK HQ of an American company called Unum which offers insurance products to employers. Clearly a profitable business! Continue reading Saturday 18th November, Boxhill to Dorking

Saturday 11th November. Epping Forest

Twelve Polyramblers braved the drizzle, coming from near and far to meet on the edge of Epping Forest.  We were lucky with the weather. The drizzle dried up and we even had some sunshine later in the day. We kept gasping at the stunning autumn colours as we puffed up and down the promised undulations! I didn’t see any sloes and only a few bracket fungi and one cluster of possible false death caps (?) but we decided the other fungi must be covered with the thick carpet of copper-coloured leaves (beech, hornbeam, oak etc.). We did see two tree-loads of crab apple windfalls, and some of the group were lucky enough to spot a herd of deer in the forest. Continue reading Saturday 11th November. Epping Forest

SWANLEY CIRCULAR WALK – 4 NOVEMBER

Eight Poly Ramblers turned out on a wet and murky Saturday morning for a walk on the borders of Kent and South East London. By the time we alighted the train at Swanley the rain had subsided to a drizzle and we headed off led by Peter along quiet lanes and across muddy fields. After 3 miles we arrived at the Five Bells in Chelsfield where the staff were very friendly and five of us enjoyed a good meal. After lunch Sandy and Nigel decided to call it a day and we left them in the pub waiting for the bus.  The weather seemed to be improving and there was even a hint of sunshine as we continued.

Although we were within the London area, there was plenty of wide open countryside with horses grazing. Such a shame that some of the country lanes were blighted by fly tipping.  Some of the worst I have seen. In spite of a few wrong turns, all was going smoothly as we headed towards Swanley, but we were brought to an abrupt halt by the  discovery that the footbridge over the railway had been closed by Network Rail. We retraced our steps and tried to find a footpath under the bypass but conditions on the ground bore no resemblance to Peter’s or Geoffrey’s maps. In the end, with the light fading rapidly, we decided to head back to the road  where we had a 2 mile walk through Swanley in the dark to the station (note to self: remember to pack torch and reflective arm bands for next unscheduled walk on unlit country lanes after dark). We estimated that we had covered nearly 12 miles in total instead of the advertised nine. All’s well that ends well though as we all survived and were back in London soon after 6pm.

Thanks to Peter for leading and participants for their (generally) good humoured stoicism.

Gillian