Day 39: 01 May 2014; Cuddington to Culcheth

Day 39: 01 May 2014; Cuddington to Culcheth
Walk descriptor LEJOG2014 Day 39
Date Thu 01 May 2014 Start to end time 08h 15m
Start point Cuddington End point Culcheth
Miles today 22.81 Cu miles 734.89
Ft today 785 Cu ft 112,062
Route miles left 745.67 Route ft left 86,029
Today’s weather Grey and overcast in morning, some sun around lunchtime, became much colder in afternoon and some light rain. Easterly wind. 15C in morning, 10C late afternoon
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Today’s location
(the red cross in a circle shows where I am at the moment)
GPX based track of today’s walk
(click here to access to access downloadable file)

Because the of the scarcity of camping sites in Merseyside, I had to make a big detour to the East of my originally planned route today, so now I’m well to the East of Warrington, whereas I had planned to be to the West. My main priority today was just to cover as much ground as possible, in a vaguely Northerly direction.

After a night staying with friends, I enjoyed the luxury of clean clothes and a dry start to the day. The first part of the day involved a road walk to the canal in Weaverham. There was a good pavement most of the way, so it wasn’t hazardous, but the traffic was heavy so I didn’t hang around, and covered the ground as fast as I could. Once I reached the canal, the going was much more pleasant, and along the way I spotted several herons, lumbering into the air on my approach like recently-revived pterodactyls.

From the canal I followed the Delamere Trail all the way to its starting point in Warrington. Like the Longster trail yesterday, it was reasonably well way-marked but evidently little used. This section of the walk was a study in green. The trees are pretty much all in full leaf now, and the fields I walked through were bursting with luxuriant, wet grass. There is nothing more effective, actually, than wet grass for getting your feet soaked right through. And the bluebells, which had been slowly coming into evidence over the past 2 or three weeks of my walk, all suddenly seemed to have burst into flower. They are a good month earlier than last year – thanks I suppose to the mild winter this year and the cold one last. But the wooded glades I walked through were stunning, carpeted in blue.

The whole of the rest of the walk – about 11 miles – seemed to be spent walking through the suburbs of Warrington. Unlike Chester, which seemed to have a high centre : suburbs ratio, Warrington seemed to comprise entirely suburbs and I’m not actually certain I ever found the centre. It was pleasant enough and one of the advantages of walking through towns is that there are frequent corner shops where you can stock up on food and cups of tea. At one of them, two of the staff were kind enough give me all their spare loose change as a donation to my charity. And the owner of the excellent Laylands Farm campsite where I am camping tonight has agreed to let me stay free of charge. So what Warrington might have lacked in architectural splendour, was more than compensated for by the generosity of its inhabitants.

And right now I am excited about reaching Wigan tomorrow. Not many people can say that – but if you look at the mileages you’ll probably be able to understand my excitement..


Today’s photos (click to enlarge)
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After a sweaty dash alongside the traffic of the A49, I was glad to reach the tranquillity of the Trent and Mersey canal at Weaverham First time I’ve seen these bright blue cornflowers growing wild in the hedgerows
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This immaculately ploughed field struck me as looking a bit like a giant Kit-Kat The “River of Life” in Warrington – built as memorial to the victims of the 1993 bombings
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Shame it’s Thursday today I’ve moved on from pigs and slugs – chickens seem to be my new best friends!
On balance I think I’d be walking than driving today..
The previous day’s blog follows below the blue line
Solid line blue