Welcome to Hertfordshire Walker


A growing collection of free walks suitable for all ages, from an hour-long potter to half-day hikes. We have walking tips for those new to rambling and a comment box beneath every walk for your feedback - you may need to disable any ad blocker to add comments.

Walk 101: Colney Heath Loop

Great walk for bird-watchers

2.4 miles (3.9 km)


The lake on Walk 101 The Colney Heath Loop


This is a short walk across Colney Heath, along the River Colne, and over Willow Lakes, where anyone who enjoys bird-watching could be in for a treat depending on the season, particularly between points 5 and 6. There is free parking at the start and finish, and a pub, The Crooked Billet, in Colney Heath a short diversion from the route (see yellow marker on the map). This walk is a shorter version of another walk on this site, Colney Heath South Loop.

Directions


Map for Walk 101: Colney Heath 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 101: Colney Heath Loop
Created on Map Hub by Hertfordshire Walker
Elements © Thunderforest © OpenStreetMap contributors
Click on the interactive map below to download KML or GPX files

Park along the track west of Coursers Road to the south of Colney Heath, grid ref TL 20496 05639.

1: Take the footpath that leads across the heath but turn left after 15m on Colney Heath footpath 36, following it as it bends SW and then turns NW through the woods for 280m until you meet a footpath junction. This is where Colney Heath footpath 36 heads SW across the field. You will return on this path, but for now, ignore it and continue NW through the woods for another 100m until you reach the open heath. You are now on Colney Heath footpath 35. Follow this path W for another 440m until you meet Church Lane.

2: Turn left on Church Lane for 20m before taking the footpath on your right. This is Ridge footpath 2, which passes a model railway on the left run by the North London Society of Model Engineers. Follow the footpath SW for 550m until you reach a track. Cross the track and then cross a bridge over a conveyor belt carrying sand from a nearby quarry before continuing along Ridge footpath 2 for another 100m until you come to a junction with Ridge bridleway 6.

Heading SW on Ridge footpath 2 Image by Hertfordshire Walker released via Creative Commons BY-NC-SA 4.0
Head SW on Ridge footpath 2
Image by Hertfordshire Walker released via Creative Commons BY-NC-SA 4.0

3: When you reach the junction of Ridge bridleway 6 and Ridge footpath 2, turn left and follow the bridleway SW for 400m looking out for a bridleway on your left.

The junction of Ridge bridleway 6 and Ridge footpath 2 mentioned in point 3 Image by Hertfordshire Walker released via Creative Commons BY-NC-SA 4.0
The junction of Ridge bridleway 6 and Ridge footpath 2 mentioned in point 3
Image by Hertfordshire Walker released via Creative Commons BY-NC-SA 4.0
4: Unusually for a bridleway, this one involves wooden steps crossing over the conveyor belt from the quarry. Take this bridleway, still Ridge bridleway 6, and head SE for 400m.

Once over the bridge you could take a 680m circular detour to the south through Garden Wood if you want to extend the walk (marked in orange in the map above) The detour brings your back to point 5 below.

The wooden steps on Ridge bridleway 6 mentioned in point 4 above
Image by Hertfordshire Walker released via Creative Commons BY-NC-SA 4.0
The conveyor belt from the quarry mentioned in point 4 above Image by Hertfordshire Walker released via Creative Commons BY-NC-SA 4.0
The conveyor belt from the quarry mentioned in point 4 above
Image by Hertfordshire Walker released via Creative Commons BY-NC-SA 4.0
5: When you reach the next crossing, turn left and head NE for 250m on Ridge footpath 4. This is a really nice path that goes between two lakes and is an ideal spot for bird-watchers.

Ridge bridleway 6 between the lakes as mentioned in point 5 above Image by Hertfordshire Walker released via Creative Commons BY-NC-SA 4.0
Ridge bridleway 6 between the lakes as mentioned in point 5 above
Image by Hertfordshire Walker released via Creative Commons BY-NC-SA 4.0
6: When you reach the next footpath junction there is a diversion that avoids crossing the field occupied by horses. The farmer has put a sign up here warning that dogs are loose in the field. Rather than take a risk we chose the diversion, Ridge footpath 47. Turn left on this path, to the left of the field, and follow it as it weaves its way around the field for 320m first NE, then NW, then NE, then NW, and eventually SE before it rejoins Ridge footpath 4.

Take the diversion on the left Ridge footpath 47 mentioned in point 6 above Image by Hertfordshire Walker released via Creative Commons BY-NC-SA 4.0
Take the diversion on the left Ridge footpath 47 mentioned in point 6 above
Image by Hertfordshire Walker released via Creative Commons BY-NC-SA 4.0
7: Turn left on Ridge footpath 4 and head NE for 530m until you reach a footbridge.

The footbridge mentioned in points 7 and 8 Image by Hertfordshire Walker released via Creative Commons BY-NC-SA 4.0
The footbridge mentioned in points 7 and 8
Image by Hertfordshire Walker released via Creative Commons BY-NC-SA 4.0
8: Cross the footbridge and continue heading NW for another 170m on Colney Heath footpath 36 until you reach the woods south of Colney Heath.

9: Continue heading NE on Colney Heath footpath 36 for 70m before branching off to the right and heading W back to the car.

Interactive map