Wednesday, 4 June 2014

A Sunday in Sunny Shropshire. . .

Last Sunday the walking group went to Church Stretton in Shropshire.  The Victorians called this area "Little Switzerland" and again, it's a completely distinctive area of the U.K. and absolutely delightful to walk in.

The hills may not be as high as the ones in Wales or the Lake District, but they still provide a good workout for the calves. I'd describe them as comfy, pillowy hills; the paths often veer off onto springy grass which (when dry) is one of the nicest terrains to walk on.

The ridge below of the Stretton Hills is the one you see as you drive into Church Stretton with The Wrekin at the far left (the pointy one) which I'd like to climb one day.   We were on the western side of the town though, where the landscape turns into moorland, reminiscent of Yorkshire.

Before veering back into rolling hills, farmland and fields of buttercups.

There were no shortage of handsome and curious sheep along this walk who were not at all spooked by walkers and quite happy to pose for photos.

But seriously, isn't this the quintessential English landscape? And don't the sheep really make it so?

When climbing many of the hills, it often looked as if we were going straight up into the clouds (also on fine form this day).  I love this type of climb as you never know what you are going to see on the other side.

It was this.  Just lovely.

The last half of the walk took us up onto Long Mynd where again, the views were spectacular.

Just to the right in the photo below, you can see the town of Church Stretton.  I thought we'd just go down the hill and head to the pub but our leader had one more treat in store for us.  

And we descended through this stunning valley instead.

An absolutely fantastic walk.  The whole area is known for its walking paths and natural beauty and I definitely want to come back and explore it in more detail along with the town which had an enticing antique shop that alas was closed when we arrived.

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