Monday, 9 November 2009

A-Walking: Shincliffe Shuffle

The small village of Rushyford {NZ 282 288} in County Durham is located near the two round-abouts that make up the intersection of the westerly going A689 road and the north-bound A167 road. We often pass by the village en route for Weardale. Today's expedition took us from the Rushyford area to Shincliffe via Ferryhill, Hett, Tudhoe, Sunderland Bridge and Croxdale Hall.

We set off from our drop-off point on the A689 road {NZ 295 286} (see the picture below) at about 10.00 am. There were 9 people in the group: JB, PB, RB, MC, KF, CH, JH, LM and WM. WM led the walk.

After negotiating the gate, we followed a northerly bearing along a good track that took us through Standalone to the south-eastern corner of the village of Chilton {NZ 293 294}. From here we made an easterly trek to Kay's Hill where we turned back onto a northerly bearing in order to reach Great Chilton Farm {NZ 298 302}.

After crossing the minor road at {NZ 298 305} we continued on our northerly bearing over Wheel Hill {NZ 297 306} and onwards to reach Ferryhill. We entered the village at {NZ 290 322} and made our way through a network of roads and houses to emerge in open land again at {NZ 292 331}.

We continuerd on our northerly trek - crossing a dismantled railway at {NZ 287 337}. Our path now took us pass a large electricity sub-station (on our right) as we joined the A688 road (Thinford Lane) at {NZ 285 346}. We walked in a westerly direction for about 200 yards and then turned right onto a footpath at {NZ 283 346} that took us in a northerly direction to a minor road at {NZ 281 356}. Turning right, we followed this into the small village of Hett {NZ 281 364} - see the picture below.

Hett Village Hall
Turning left pass the village hall, we headed in a westerly direction to cross the A167(T) road at {NZ 274 362}. Our route now took us across the fields to a school on the outskirts of Tudhoe Colliery {NZ 266 359}. Continuing on a south-westerly bearing we arrived at Tudhoe Village {NZ 258 356} where we had a short lunch stop on the village green.

After lunch, we headed in a south-westerly direction to cross Valley Burn. We then had a very pleasant westerley trek through Spring Wood to reach the River Wear at {NZ 242 359}. As a consequence of yesterday's heavy rainfall, the level of the river was very high - and it was flowing at a tremendous speed. Turning onto a north-easterly bearing, we now followed the course of the river to Sunderland Bridge {NZ 265 378} (see picture below) where we joined the route of the Weardale Way (WW). As we approached Sunderland Bridge we had some very good views of the Croxdale Railway Viaduct {NZ 263 376}.

Sunderland Bridge
After stopping for a while in order to watch the turbulent waters of the River Wear, we entered the Croxdale Estate and followed the WW along a good road to Croxdale Hall {NZ 274 378}. We stopped here (near the church) for a short tea break. Continuing along the WW, we now made our way to High Butterby Farm {NZ 288 389}

From the farm, we descended down a steep, muddy path into Shincliffe Wood and continued along the route of the WW until we reached the village of Shincliffe {NZ 289 409} - where our expedition ended.

Many thanks to WM for organising such an interesting and exciting adventure for us today. We had a really great time. Use the buttons below to see where we went, how we did and some of the sights we saw.



JB and I had a really delicious cup of tea (or two or three) in The Rose Tree at the end of the walk.




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