Distance - 7.19 miles
Ascent - 28 metres
Earlier in the week I did a 5 mile walk along the Ouse with a loop round Roxton. I thought I'd come back and do the full Great Barford/Tempsford loop, mainly before the nettles get much higher (they are growing and growing!). The weather was perfect, I arrived with plenty of time, I was in no rush, what could go wrong?
The section between Great Barford and Roxton is fairly well known to me now. It's a flat walk along the river, it's quite nice and easy to follow. As I mentioned last time the rubbish in the trees does detract a little but it is/was offset by the wildlife on show, swans, ducks, birds (I'm such a twitcher...) and butterflies. The river is very slow (artificially so due to the weirs and locks) and you would be hard pressed to work out which direction it flows in for most of the walk.
Just over the lock you come to the River Ivel, which is much smaller than the Ouse but seems to have so much more 'life' about it. Much cleaner, much faster flow, just more fun! However it was soon after the locks and the Ivel where I hit A problem. The footpath crosses a small bridge and into a farmyard.
The bridge was blocked by a temporary gate/barrier, tied together with twine and not readily openable. The path then crosses a stile into the farm yard, the yard was full of cows and gates within the yard clearly closed. Now I am not to bothered with cows in a field, but crossing a yard containing a crowd of them and forcing my way through them wasn't a enticing option. I couldn't see any farmers around, so couldn't ask. I decided to turn around.
|The inviting path|
The problem with these river walks is that there tends to be no easy alternative routes or detours, you either cross the river or turn back. I decided to do the Roxton loop again to extend the walk a little. I also did a slightly (better) route to the village. I walked further up the Ouse and crossed a couple of fields further up than the days before. The path led through a narrow orchard, which on the sunny day was almost perfect.
Nice walks on a nice day, pretty much sums it up!