Pete's Walks - Short Kensworth walk (in the snow)

I did this short local walk on Tuesday, 22nd December, 2009. It was a route I've walked many times before when I can only spare a short time for a walk - it is probably about two miles long and normally takes me about 40 minutes, but today it took twice as long. Last night we had another 3-4 inches of snow, on top of the 3-4 inches that remained from the two previous snowfalls in recent days. This time it had been less windy, so the snow that landed on trees and bushes remained there, making the winter scenery even more magical.

The route starts off along Common Road, Kensworth, and turns right on a path beside the small industrial estate. It soon joins a farm track, which quickly reaches a gateway giving nice views of the valley that runs immediately north of the main part of the village of Kensworth.

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The farm track, beside the small industrial estate

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Close-up. looking through the gateway and across the valley to the steep slope called Codling Bank

The path descends into the valley, passing a large barn, then turns left and rises slightly along the far side to follow the bottom of a steep section of rough ground called Codling Bank. At the end of the bank it goes through a kissing gate to meet the path round Kensworth quarry. Here I turned right, climbing a steep step of steps to reach the top of the hill. The path then goes through another kissing gate and turns right towards Church End.

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The footpath near the foot of the valley, by a barn

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Looking back from the top of the steps on the quarry path, beyond Codling Bank. The barn in the last photo is in the centre of the shot.

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Looking back across the valley

The path then runs beside a small wood on the right. The quarry path continues ahead (soon splitting into two alternatives) but I turned right at the end of the wood, then left again at the next field corner, and continued along hedgerows for another quarter mile or so to reach Hollicks Lane, with Church End a short distance to my left.

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Near Church End

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Near Church End

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Tree near Church End

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Hollicks Lane - this and the other lane between Kensworth and Church End has been closed for several days

I went right for about 100 yards along the lane, then took a path forking half-left. I had to make my own path here - most of the way so far other people (mainly dog walkers) had made a path for me, but mine were the first footsteps across the snow in this field. There were a few people in the field corner to my right, and I'd soon see them sledging down beside the lane. When I reached the far side of the field near another corner, I turned right and followed the path down into the valley, then followed a hedgerow up the other side. I stopped near the top of the hill to look back and to take a few photos, then continued into the short cul-de-sac of Malmes Close to return to Common Road, about a third of a mile east of my home.

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Looking ahead towards Kensworth from the path to Malmes Close

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Looking back up the valley to where I crossed it earlier

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The path to Malmes Close, Kensworth

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Looking back from the edge of Kensworth near Malmes Close

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Looking back from the edge of Kensworth near Malmes Close

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Snow-covered tree near Malmes Close, Kensworth

Despite the grey and almost overcast skies I thought everywhere looked stunning in the snow, and I thoroughly enjoyed this short walk. As I mentioned before, there were generally footsteps for me to follow with only a couple of short sections where I was the first person to walk through the snow. And nowhere was the snow drifted to knee-high, as it had been in places on my walk on Friday.

You can see the same walk on a sunny Spring day here.