Allbrook and wet feet -first published 3 May 2014

May 2014 and I’d reached Kiln Lane on my attempt to walk the whole Itchen Navigation from Winchester to Northam Wharf. After meeting a man on the path who told me it had been waist deep further along the trail I didn’t quite know what to do next. Should I attempt the Navigation or should I take the road along Kiln Lane? I stood for a while looking at the footpath sign and then along the road, dithering and uncertain. Continue reading Allbrook and wet feet -first published 3 May 2014

Otterbourne to Allbrook, when the going gets tough… – first published 3 May 2014

The beginning of May 2014 and I had reached the Bridge pub at Shawford, near Victor’s Bridge, where grumpy sit com character Victor Meldrew met his end. Part of me wanted to stop for something to eat but there were masses of people milling about outside and I knew it would probably take ages to get served, never mind that I wasn’t really sure what food would be available. In the end I decided to give it a miss and carry on to the rustic bench at Otterbourne. In hindsight this may not have been one of my better decisions. Continue reading Otterbourne to Allbrook, when the going gets tough… – first published 3 May 2014

The Navigation with company – first published 11 September 2013

image677

On 11 September 2013 I went for a little walk. When I say little, I meant about fourteen and a half miles. For once I wasn’t walking alone, I had Sirona with me. In my defence, she did know what she was getting into. Continue reading The Navigation with company – first published 11 September 2013

Here there be dragons, crossing the breach – first published 16 July 2013

image250

So there I was at the bottom of Allbrook Hill on Higbridge Road, facing an array of confusing signs about ford keys and bank breaches not knowing whether to carry on or bail out. It looked like my Winchester or bust plan might be doomed to failure. In the end I  decided to risk carrying on along the Itchen Navigation and see what happened. Was this to be a decision I would regret? Only time would tell and all I could hope was, if it was totally impassable, I wasn’t too far along the path. Continue reading Here there be dragons, crossing the breach – first published 16 July 2013

Weirs, alpacas, goats impersonating cows and stinging nettles

image

21 April 2015

Even before I crossed the road I could see the green sign was still there and my heart sank a little. Even so, I crossed and peered uncertainly up the towpath. It loooked dry and firm but still I dithered. Last year there was a bad breach where the path looked to be in danger of being washed away altogether. If I went ahead I could come seriously unstuck and have to turn back. The cracked wall was testement to just how bad the flooding had been. The wier was flowing fast, but it wasn’t as high as I’ve seen it. In the end I decided to give it a try. Continue reading Weirs, alpacas, goats impersonating cows and stinging nettles