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Walk 141: Nuthampstead NW Loop

7.7 miles (12.4km) with 440 ft of ascent


The route between points 8 and 9
The route between points 8 and 9
This walk starts in the village of Nuthampstead. During WWII the area had an airbase which was home to the 55th Fighter Group and subsequently the 398th Bombardment Group of the U.S. Army Air Forces. Our route heads NW through Barkway, which is mentioned in The Domesday book as Birchwig, meaning Birch Way. The village has a number of buildings dating back to the 15th and 16th centuries. The walk then passes through Newsells Park before heading E and returning via the village of Barley.

Directions


Map for Walk 141: Nuthampstead North-West Loop  Created on Map Hub by Hertfordshire Walker Elements © Thunderforest © OpenStreetMap contributors There is an interactive map below these directions
Map for Walk 141: Nuthampstead North-West Loop 
Created on Map Hub by Hertfordshire Walker
Elements © Thunderforest © OpenStreetMap contributors

There is an interactive map below these directions
Those with GPS devices can download GPX or KML files for the walk. We've added What3Words references for those who use that system. If you print these walks you might want to use the green PrintFriendly icon at the bottom of these directions to delete elements.

Stuart Johnson, the owner of The Woodman Inn, says that people doing this walk are welcome to park in the pub's car park if they intend to buy refreshments before or after their walk. Please check with the pub before parking in case the situation has changed since this walk was published.

We have also marked a spot on the map just after point 15 where there is a small concrete layby big enough for a couple of cars if you would rather park there.

1: From The Woodman Inn, Nuthampstead head N for 90m until you reach Bell Lane. Turn left on Bell Lane and head W for 420m until you reach a footpath on the right (location - https://w3w.co/tourist.shipped.paddlers).

Nuthampstead footpath 1 heading NNE off Bell Lane
Nuthampstead footpath 1 heading NNE off Bell Lane
2: Turn right on Nuthampstead footpath 1 and head NNE for 100m until the path turns right through the hedgerow and crosses a footbridge (location - https://w3w.co/beamed.represent.segments). After crossing the footbridge you will come to a gate. When we did this walk there was a sign warning of a bull in the field, but we saw no sign of a bull. Go through the gate and turn left walking with the hedgerow on your left and the field on your right for 40m to a second gate leaving the field. Continue heading NNE for 110m, again with the hedgerow on the left and field on the right, to a footpath junction (location - https://w3w.co/kept.bunkers.binds).

3: Turn left on Nuthampstead footpath 2, and head NNW for 50m until the path leaves the woods (location - https://w3w.co/strict.discloses.jacuzzi). Turn right, still on Nuthampstead footpath 2, and head NNW for 110m until you reach another junction (location - https://w3w.co/upward.intend.imagined).

Nuthampstead footpath 2 heading NNW
Nuthampstead footpath 2 heading NNW
4: Turn left and head WNW on Nuthampstead footpath 12 for 1.65km. This is a lovely path with wide open views on both sides. You will pass Brickhill Grove on the right and Earl's Wood on the left. As you walk alongside Earl's Wood your path becomes Barkway footpath 13 and continues to junction at the end of the woodland (location - https://w3w.co/initial.retrieves.hobbyists).

Nuthampstead footpath 12 heading WNW
Nuthampstead footpath 12 heading WNW
5: At the junction take the main track straight ahead, Barkway footpath 15. It is the track with the telegraph pole in the image below. Continue heading WNW for 930m passing Earl's Wood Cottage on the left (location - https://w3w.co/merge.crunches.costumed), then crossing the River Quin (location - https://w3w.co/bookcases.solutions.afterglow) and continuing until you reach Cambridge Road in Barkway (location - https://w3w.co/bookcases.solutions.afterglow).

Take Barkway footpath 15 - the track with the telegraph pole
Take Barkway footpath 15 - the track with the telegraph pole
6: Turn right on Cambridge Road and head NE for 140m looking out for a bridleway on the left (location - https://w3w.co/texts.spurted.rural). Turn left on Barkway bridleway 17 and head first NW then N for 1.5km until you reach a junction (location - https://w3w.co/fetching.spun.infringe).

Barkway bridleway 17 heading N
Barkway bridleway 17 heading N
7: Turn right and head E for 130m to another junction by a war memorial (location - https://w3w.co/taxed.scanty.crisper), see image below. Turn left on Barkway UCR1 (unmetalled unclassed country road) and head NNE for 720m until you reach a T-junction (location - https://w3w.co/leopard.tucked.steep).

Turn left at the war memorial on Barkway UCR1
Turn left at the war memorial on Barkway UCR1
8: Turn right on Barley UCR1 and head E for 800m until you reach Cambridge Road (location - https://w3w.co/admires.doghouse.dynasties). This is a fairly steep uphill section. 
* At this junction the The Chequers pub/restaurant will be 20m to the S on the right (location - https://w3w.co/evolution.stir.stacks). They serve a good pint of Hadham Gold, a local brew.
9: Continue along Cambridge Road and head ENE through the village of Barley for 370m until you reach the Fox & Hounds pub/restaurant.
* This Michelin Guide listed restaurant has a lunchtime special menu which, when we ate there, was excellent.

Barley footpath 10 heading S out of Barley
The Fox & Hounds and gantry - one of only four in the country
10: Cross the road and take a footpath directly opposite the pub and to the right of a black wooden workshop and to the left of a war memorial (location - https://w3w.co/observer.hawks.propelled), see image below. This is Barley footpath 10 which you follow S for 710m until you reach Smith's End Lane (location - https://w3w.co/soon.scraper.skies).

Barley footpath 10 heading S out of Barley
Barley footpath 10 heading S out of Barley
11: Turn left on Smith's End Lane and head SSE for 300m until you reach a T-junction at Bogmoor Road (location - https://w3w.co/weeps.sandpaper.badge).

12: Take the footpath directly opposite, Barley footpath 13, and head SSE for 1.5km until the path reaches woodland at Trigg's Grove and Messop Grove (location - https://w3w.co/rate.gender.catchers). As you go through the woodland listen out for the Lesser Whitethroat.

Barley footpath 13 approaching Trigg's Grove
Barley footpath 13 approaching Trigg's Grove
13: Here the path becomes Nuthampstead footpath 9 and heads SSW for 680m to a footpath junction (location - https://w3w.co/treaties.gained.playroom). Along this path we heard a Blackcap.

14: Turn left on Nuthampstead bridleway 10, which is a gravel and concrete track along this section, and head NE and then bends to the right and heads SE for 540m until you reach a lane (location - https://w3w.co/stadium.imprinted.unheated).

15: Turn right on the lane and follow it SE then SW for 1.4km back to the starting point.

When we did this walk we decided to stay the night at The Woodman Inn, at Nuthampstead, so that we could spend two days exploring the area. We had a delicious evening meal washed down with two local beers. Great food and not expensive. We slept well, too. Behind the inn is a museum related to the former airfield, which was closed when we were there due to covid. The pub has memorabilia related to the WWII use of the local airbase by the U.S. Army Air Forces.

This is one of two walks from The Woodman Inn, Nuthampstead. The other is the slightly shorter Walk 142: Nuthampstead SW Loop which is 6.5 miles long and has 330ft of ascent.

Interactive map




3 comments:

  1. Just arrived home from this walk, fabulous. Going to try walk 142 toward the end of the week. Loving your walks, thank you

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Maggie,
      Glad you liked it. We really enjoyed that walk too. Walk 142 is not, in our opinion, as good as walk 141 but is still nice. Enjoy. And let us know how you get on.
      David

      Delete
    2. Oh well, we'll just have to partake of the facilities of The Woodman, at the end of the walk, however :)

      Delete

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