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Walk 100: Cottered South Loop

6 miles (9.6 km) with 88m total ascent


Cromer windmill at point 5 along the route. Image by Hertfordshire Walker released via Creative Commons BY-NC-SA 4.0
Cromer windmill at point 4 in the walk
This is a pleasant undulating walk through some superb north Hertfordshire countryside. Most of it is along well-marked footpaths and byways, with some walking along quiet country lanes. There is a 2km stretch along a Roman road. The route passes Cromer windmill which is thought to have been built between 1192 and 1222.

Hertfordshire County Council say that due to embankment work being carried out, Ardeley BOAT 10 / Cottered BOAT 34 (byway open to all traffic) heading S and E towards the junction with Cottered 21, for an approximate distance of 100m, will be closed for up to six months from 5 February 2024. They do suggest a diversion, please see map below.

Map courtesy of Hertfordshire County Council
Map courtesy of Hertfordshire County Council


Directions


Map for Walk 100: Cottered S Loop  Created on Map Hub by Hertfordshire Walker  Elements © Thunderforest © OpenStreetMap contributors  Note: There is a larger, more-detailed map embedded at the end of these directions
Map for Walk 100: Cottered South Loop
Created on Map Hub by Hertfordshire Walker
Elements © Thunderforest © OpenStreetMap contributors

There is an interactive map below the directions
Those with GPS devices can download GPX or KML files for this walk. We've added What3Words location references for those who use that navigation system. If you print these walks you might want to use the green PrintFriendly icon at the bottom of these directions to delete elements you don't need.

1: From Warren Lane in Cottered village take Cottered footpath 26 (location - https://w3w.co/dined.hems.splinters) which heads SW for 410m.

2: Shortly after a wooden bridge take the footpath on your right (location - https://w3w.co/rewrites.song.unites), still Cottered footpath 26. There is a bench here by the marker. Head SW across the fields heading for the windmill in the distance.

The footpath mentioned in point 2 above Image by Hertfordshire Walker released via Creative Commons BY-NC-SA 4.0
The footpath mentioned in point 2
3: As you reach the B1037 (location - https://w3w.co/later.chess.albums), look our for Ardeley footpath 49 on your right. Turn right on this footpath and follow it NW and W for 273m until you reach a track on the left (location - https://w3w.co/hazel.liberty.insiders) leading to the windmill.

The windmill viewed from Ardeley footpath 49 Image by Hertfordshire Walker released via Creative Commons BY-NC-SA 4.0
The windmill viewed from Ardeley footpath 49
4: Turn left on this track and follow it up to the B1037 (location - https://w3w.co/soils.juggles.rivals).

5: Cross the B1037 and head SSE down the lane directly opposite. Continue down this quiet lane for 580m until you meet Blind Lane (location - https://w3w.co/winks.nerd.camcorder).

6: Turn right and follow the lane S for 440m until you reach a footpath on the left just before a bridge over Ardeley Brook (location - https://w3w.co/shepherdess.lashed.gestures). This is Ardeley footpath 36.

Ardeley footpath 36 and the bridge mentioned in point 6 above Image by Hertfordshire Walker released via Creative Commons BY-NC-SA 4.0
Ardeley footpath 36 and the bridge mentioned in point 6
7: Turn left on this path and follow it NE along the N side of Ardeley Brook.

The oak tree on Ardeley footpath 36 mentioned in point 8 below Image by Hertfordshire Walker released via Creative Commons BY-NC-SA 4.0
The oak tree on Ardeley footpath 36 mentioned in point 8
8: After 460m, and at a point just past an oak tree, there is a marker pointing left across the fields (location - https://w3w.co/tortoises.dreamers.option). We intended to take this path, but on the day we walked this route the path through the crop had not been restored so we decided that rather than damage what was growing we would continue heading E along the track before following it as it bends left and uphill heading N before bending to the right and meeting Ardeley BOAT (byway open to all traffic) 10 (location - https://w3w.co/lend.joyously.remarried).

Ardeley BOAT 10 mentioned in points 8 above and 9 below Image by Hertfordshire Walker released via Creative Commons BY-NC-SA 4.0
Ardeley BOAT 10 mentioned in points 8 and 9
9: Turn right on Ardeley BOAT 10, a Roman road, and head SE for 2.1km. Along the way you will cross a ford with two benches on the right.

A ford and a footbridge on Ardeley BOAT 10 mentioned in point 9 above Image by Hertfordshire Walker released via Creative Commons BY-NC-SA 4.0
A ford and a footbridge on Ardeley BOAT 10 mentioned in point 9

The second ford and a footbridge on Ardeley BOAT 10 mentioned in point 10 below Image by Hertfordshire Walker released via Creative Commons BY-NC-SA 4.0
The second ford and a footbridge mentioned in point 10
10: After crossing the second ford, pictured above, turn left and take Cottered BOAT 47 (location - https://w3w.co/admits.contents.increased) and follow it NE for 780m to the point where the BOAT bends to the left and you reach a footpath, Cottered footpath 29, heading off to the right (location - https://w3w.co/climbing.buzzards.sailors).

Cottered footpath 29 mentioned in point 10
11: Take this path and head NNE with the field on your left and hedgerow on your right for 600m until you reach a footpath junction (location - https://w3w.co/lessening.model.breaches).

12: Turn left on Cottered footpath 18 and head W for 170m looking out for a gap in the hedge on the right leading to a footbridge, which in turn leads into the woods (location - https://w3w.co/sweetened.cold.pint).

The footpath and footbridge leading to the woods, mentioned in point 12 above Image by Hertfordshire Walker released via Creative Commons BY-NC-SA 4.0
The footpath and footbridge leading to the woods - point 12
13: Turn right on this path, cross the footbridge and walk diagonally NW through the woods until you reach a wooden bridge leading to a field (location - https://w3w.co/consults.steps.toasters).

The footbridge leading to the open field, mentioned in point 13 above Image by Hertfordshire Walker released via Creative Commons BY-NC-SA 4.0
The footbridge leading to the field, mentioned in point 13
14: At this point your way is straight ahead, indicated by signs on the bridge and on a marker, but when we walked this the field had recently been ploughed and the path wasn't clear. Using our Ordnance Survey mobile app were were able to use GPS to follow the path W across the field for 260m to the hedgerow on the opposite side. For those without an app you should be heading for a gap in the hedge to the left of a tree and to the right of a fence (location - https://w3w.co/scorching.knocking.special), see image below.

Cross the field and head for the gap in the hedge mentioned in point 14 above Image by Hertfordshire Walker released via Creative Commons BY-NC-SA 4.0
Cross the field and head for the gap in the hedge - point 14
15: Continue along this footpath, still Cottered footpath 18, for 130m until you reach a track (location - https://w3w.co/infects.cringes.solids).

16: Turn right and head NW, walk past a cottage on the left called The Place, cross a footbridge and look out for a footpath, Cottered footpath 10, on your left 10m after the bridge (location - https://w3w.co/thud.among.eminent).

Cottered footpath 10 just after the footbridge, mentioned in point 16 above Image by Hertfordshire Walker released via Creative Commons BY-NC-SA 4.0
Cottered footpath 10 just after the footbridge - point 16
17: Take this path, cross a footbridge, and go through a gate. Once through the gate, keep to the right, with the hedgerow on the right and the field on your left, and continue to the end of the field where you will reach a gate. At the end of the woodland go through another gate and continue into the next field keeping the hedgerow on your right and the field on your left.

The footpath mentioned in point 17 above Image by Hertfordshire Walker released via Creative Commons BY-NC-SA 4.0
The footpath mentioned in point 17
18: After the next gate you cut diagonally NNE across two fields for 260m until you reach a gate and a footpath junction (location - https://w3w.co/survey.erupt.less).

19: Go through the gate and head N along Cottered footpath 10 until you reach the A507 (location - https://w3w.co/secondly.rejoiced.surely).

20: Cross the road and turn left walking W, past The Bull pub (location - https://w3w.co/sparrows.inserting.voice), looking out for the B1037 on the left (location - https://w3w.co/laptop.encoding.groom).

21: Cross the road and take the B1037 back to the spot where you parked.

Interactive Map





8 comments:

  1. Walked this route today, it was lovely, but had to divert around the ploughed field as suggested. Otherwise great. Thanks

    ReplyDelete
  2. Hi Maggie,
    I know what you mean. It's a seasonal problem when footpaths get ploughed over and have not yet been reinstated. I try to avoid routes across crops, but it's not always possible when trying to work out a circular walk.
    David

    ReplyDelete
  3. We combined this walk with 98 Ardeley South East Loop for a walk of about 8 miles on Friday March 3rd. It worked well. We had no problems with navigating and were able to walk across the ploughed field at point 14 without any difficulty. We had a good lunch at the Old Bull in Cottered before returning to our starting point in Ardeley. Thank you for sharing two more excellent walks in Hertfordshire.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Great idea combining the walks. I have devised a walk that combines a few more in that area, but have yet to test it. You might be interested. David
      https://www.hertfordshirewalker.uk/2022/04/the-north-hertfordshire-loop.html

      Delete
  4. Parts of the walk were very wet today. Between the fords, the Roman Road was underwater so we had to divert onto the field alongside. A torrent was also running down BOAT 47 when we first turned onto it. Great fun and a lovely walk nevertheless.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Ah, what a pity. Glad you found a way round the flooding and still enjoyed the walk.

      Delete
  5. I attempted this walk today but a major part of it (BOAT 10) is currently closed. Maydencroft are undertaking work along the path and one of their workers told me that there is no bridge, so presumably they are replacing it. I took a *very* muddy footpath across a field and walked back up a (flooded) Warren Lane to the church. Someone with better navigation skills might be able to find an alternative route to continue the walk!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi, really sorry you discovered this the hard way. Hertfordshire County Council usually keep me informed about work regarding rights of way. I have added a note on the four walks affected by this stretch. I will also post a note in our Hertfordshire Walker Facebook Group. Thanks for letting me know. David
      https://www.facebook.com/groups/hertfordshirewalker

      Delete

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