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Walk 194: Bayford N Loop

6.4 miles (10.3 km) with 360 ft of ascent


Crossing the River Lea at point 17 in the walk
Crossing the River Lea at point 17 in the walk
This walk from Bayford heads NW to the outskirts of Hertford then returns SW across the River Lea valley. It starts at the Baker Arms in Bayford with the option of two short detours along the way to visit The Black Horse in Hertford or The White Horse in Hertingfordbury. Please check pub opening hours to avoid disappointment. The start of the walk is 4 miles SSW from Hertford North station by road.

This walk crosses two livestock fields between points 3 and 5. We saw some cows in the first field, but they weren't interested in us. The route also goes along sections of two lanes without pavement for pedestrians; there is a 120m section between points 14 and 15, and a 560m section from point 22 to the end of the walk. There is also a 750m stretch on pedestrian pavement alongside roads on the outskirts of Hertford.

Directions


Map for Walk 194: Bayford N Loop
Map for Walk 194: Bayford N Loop
Click here or on the map for a larger version
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 system. If you print these walks you might want to use the green PrintFriendly icon at the bottom of these directions to delete elements such as photographs.

The landlord at the Baker Arms, says that people following this walk are welcome to use the pub's car park if they intend to stop for refreshments before or after the walk. But please check by contacting the pub to make sure this has not changed.

1: With your back to the Baker Arms on Ashendene Road in Bayford (location - https://w3w.co/doll.rental.chins), turn right then head NE for 50m until you reach a lane called Bayford Green (location - https://w3w.co/marker.sheep.rather), see image below.

Bayford Green at the start of the walk
Bayford Green at the start of the walk

Continue heading NE along Bayford Green, which is also Bayford footpath 10, for 295m until you reach a fork (location - https://w3w.co/soap.wider.aspect), see image below.

Keep right at the fork, still on Bayford footpath 10
Keep right at the fork, still on Bayford footpath 10
2: Keep right at the fork, still on Bayford footpath 10, then continue heading NE for 170m until you reach a footpath on the right (location - https://w3w.co/globe.blocks.cherry), see image below.

Turn right on Bayford footpath 1
Turn right on Bayford footpath 1
3: Turn right on Bayford footpath 1, then head E for 140m until you reach a metal gate with a footpath gate to the right (location - https://w3w.co/peanut.paying.regard), see image below.

Head E with the hedgerow on the left and field on the right
Head E with the hedgerow on the left and field on the right
4: Go through the gate then head E, still on Bayford footpath 1, with the hedgerow on the left and field on the right for 180m until the path bends left by a metal gate (location - https://w3w.co/sector.games.serve), see image below.

Go through the gate then head N
Go through the gate then head N
5: Go through the gate then head N, still on Bayford footpath 1, with the field on the left and the hedgerow and railway on the right, continuing for 750m until the path turns right into the hedgerow (location - https://w3w.co/towns.improving.played), see image below. This turn is easy to miss. For those with online access use the What3Words reference above. 

Bayford footpath 1 cuts through the hedgerow and crosses a footbridge
Bayford footpath 1 cuts through the hedgerow and crosses a footbridge
6: Follow Bayford footpath 1 as it turns right, crosses a footbridge, then heads N for 1.2km. (see image of the footpath below).

Bayford footpath 1 between points 6 & 7
It's important to ignore any paths on the left along this stretch. They are not open to the general public. Notices have been posted at various points along the way. They read: "Private land.  No unauthorised access. No public right of way".

Signs along Bayford footpath 1
One of the signs along Bayford footpath 1
Continue heading N along Bayford footpath 1 with the railway on the right and woodland on the left until you reach a footbridge over the railway on the right (location - https://w3w.co/tummy.lime.shape).

7: Turn right, cross the railway footbridge then cross a small footbridge made up of old railway sleepers, see image below.

Cross a small footbridge made of old railway sleepers
Cross a small footbridge made of old railway sleepers
Continue heading NE, now on Brickendon Liberty footpath 27 for 250m until the path you are on crosses a parish boundary and continues as Hertford footpath 52 for 340m until you reach Brickendon Lane (location - https://w3w.co/limit.opens.repair).

8: Cross Brickendon Lane then turn left and head NNW for 490m until you reach Hornsmill Road (location - https://w3w.co/degree.stole.envy). There is a pedestrian pavement along this stretch of Brickendon Lane.

9: Turn right on Hornsmill Road then head NNE for 240m until you reach a small traffic island (location - https://w3w.co/cheeks.soup.track), see image below. There is a pedestrian pavement along this stretch of Hornsmill Road.

Cross the traffic island then head N along Horns Road
Cross the traffic island then head N along Horns Road
10: Cross the road at the traffic island then head N along Horns Road for 370m passing allotments on your left and continuing until you reach a track on the left (location - https://w3w.co/oval.probe.pushes), see image below.

Turn left on Hertford BOAT 54
Turn left on Hertford BOAT 54
* At this point you could take a detour to visit The Black Horse, by continuing heading NE for 320m along Horns Road and then West Street until you reach the pub on your right (location - https://w3w.co/hogs.luxury.locked). 
11: Turn left on Hertford BOAT 54 (byway open to all traffic), then head SW and W for 400m, crossing the River Lea via a bridge (location - https://w3w.co/filer.pulled.vivid) then passing Hertford Town Football Club on the right (location - https://w3w.co/hats.truth.ships) and continuing through a gate (location - https://w3w.co/shops.gave.gift), see image below.

Continue through the gate and on to a railway viaduct
Continue through the gate and on to a railway viaduct

Continue until you reach a railway viaduct (location - https://w3w.co/decay.search.bring), see image below.

Go under the viaduct then head SW on Hertford footpath 55
Go under the viaduct then head SW on Hertford footpath 55
12: Go under the viaduct then continue heading SW, now on Hertford footpath 55, for 80m until you reach the entrance to the Cole Green Way (location - https://w3w.co/text.shells.lonely), see image below.

Turn left on Hertford footpath 55
Turn left on Hertford footpath 55
Turn left on Hertford footpath 55 immediately before you reach the Cole Green Way then follow the footpath first S then in a westerly direction for 355m until you reach some cottages on the left and a lane (location - https://w3w.co/crib.stacks.finishing).

13: Continue heading E, now on Hertford BOAT 56, for 570m until you reach St Mary's Lane (location - https://w3w.co/comic.award.lasts).
* At this point you could take a detour to visit The White Horse in Hertingfordbury by turning right on St Mary's Lane then heading NNW for 470m where you will find the pub on your left (location - https://w3w.co/gravel.defend.save). There is no pedestrian pavement along this stretch of road. 
14: Turn left then head S on St Mary's Lane for 150m until you reach a bridleway on the right (location - https://w3w.co/rugs.asking.level), see image of bridleway below. There is no pedestrian pavement along this stretch of road.

Turn right on the Hertford bridleway 57
Turn right on the Hertford bridleway 57
15: Turn right on Hertford bridleway 57 then head SW for 280m at which point you cross the parish boundary and continue heading SW but now on Hertingfordbury bridleway 2. This is a particularly pretty stretch of countryside with open views, through shaded woodland, and alongside meadows rich in wild flowers. See selection of images below.

Entering a wooded stretch along Hertingfordbury bridleway 2
Entering a wooded stretch along Hertingfordbury bridleway 2

Entering the woodland on Hertingfordbury bridleway 2

Wild chicory alongside Hertingfordbury bridleway 2
Chicory alongside Hertingfordbury bridleway 2

Follow Hertingfordbury bridleway 2 for 970m to a junction (location - https://w3w.co/finger.unwanted.each), see image below.

Turn left at the junction, still on Hertingford Bridleway 2
Turn left at the junction, still on Hertingford bridleway 2
* At this point you could take a short detour to visit the remains of the Baroque gardens at Grotto Wood, now overgrown (location - https://w3w.co/bulb.seat.marble). Grotto Wood features in Walk 93 in our collection. To visit Grotto Wood turn right at the junction at point 16 and head NW for 120m.
16: Turn left at the junction, still on Hertingford bridleway 2, then follow it S then SW again for 850m until you reach a bridge over the River Lea on the left (location - https://w3w.co/sleeps.hatch.punch), see image below.

Cross the River Lea then head S
Cross the bridge over the River Lea then head S
17: Cross the River Lea then head S, now on Little Berkhamsted bridleway 25, for 155m until you reach the Lower Hatfield Road (location - https://w3w.co/wrong.liner.daring), see image below.

Cross the Lower Hatfield Road then take Little Berkhamsted bridleway 21
Cross the Lower Hatfield Road then take Little Berkhamsted bridleway 21
18: Cross the Lower Hatfield Road then take the track on the other side, Little Berkhamsted bridleway 21, then head SSE for 400m to a junction (location - https://w3w.co/blend.topic.cheek), see image below. This is a particularly pretty stretch of the walk. 

Turn left on Bayford footpath 4 and head uphill
Turn left on Bayford footpath 4 then head uphill
19: Turn left on Bayford footpath 4 then head SE uphill and through woodland. Another lovely stretch of the walk. After 190m you will reach a fork in the path (location - https://w3w.co/sprint.pool.item), see image below.

Keep straight avoiding the fork to the right - see orange arrow
Keep straight avoiding the fork to the right - see orange arrow

Keep to the left at the fork heading straight along an overgrown section of the footpath for 270m until you reach a field (location - https://w3w.co/bond.fluid.resist), see image below.

Bayford footpath 4 crosses a field
Bayford footpath 4 crosses a field
20: At this point Bayford footpath 4 crosses a field, but when we tested this route on 28 July 2022 the path had not been reinstated after the crop had been harvested, so we kept left and walked round the edge of the field with the hedgerow on the left and the field on the right until we rejoined Bayford footpath 4 on the far side of the field (location - https://w3w.co/transmitted.comical.dimes), see map below.

Detour round edge of field in orange
Detour round edge of field in orange
Image source: Esri, DigitalGlobe, GeoEye, Earthstar Geographics,
CNES/Airbus DS, USDA, USGS, AEX, Getmapping, Aerogrid,
IGN, IGP, swisstopo, and the GIS User Community
Follow Bayford footpath 4 SE, with the hedgerow on the left and the field on the right, until you reach a left turn (location - https://w3w.co/toxic.fairly.exile), see image below.

Turn left, still on Bayford footpath 4, then head E to Bayford Lane
Turn left, still on Bayford footpath 4, then head E to Bayford Lane
Turn left, still on Bayford footpath 4, then head E for 260m to Bayford Lane (location - https://w3w.co/lamp.proper.runs).

21: Turn right on Bayford Lane and head first S then E then SE for 500m back to Bayford village and the starting point. There is no pedestrian pavement along this stretch of Bayford Lane.

A big thanks to our friends Debbie and Sam who recommended we try the footpaths between points 1 and 7. I then took on the challenge to create a loop using public rights of way. 

Interactive map




2 comments:

  1. At point 16 if you turn right you could have a short detour around Grotto Wood, featured on another of your walks, number 93 I think

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Great idea. I have edited the directions to include that suggestion. Thanks. Dave

      Delete

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