UK Mountains Walking, Mountaineering and Equipment Reviews
Shropshire Way
From Craven Arms to Clun
200 Miles longShropshire Way
Craven Arms to Clun(11 miles)
Ludlow to Craven Arms(10.5 miles)
Craven Arms to Clun: 11 miles
Shropshire Way

Reluctantly I had to leave the sanctuary of the Stokesay Castle cafe on the second part of the days walk, the first part being Ludlow to Craven Arms. Retracing my steps, I entered a field, recalling how, some months ago I'd ridden out to Stokesay Castle for a visit and noticed this very signpost, who knew it would be the start of a plan to walk the entire route - well, to be fair, it was always going to happen!

I soon picked up the path, the line of which was also followed by the Heart of Wales Line Trail. Described as 'A wonderful walk weaving its way between stations on one of Britain's most scenic railways. The route, from Craven Arts to Llanelli, is 227km (141 miles) in length'. Ho hum, another challenge! The path was now heading almost due East, again mostly on field paths and good going. Hopesay Hill was dispatched with ease, and I noticed at the foot, a sign declaring Clun to be 8.5 miles distant. That would prove to be wrong by almost a mile, nothing much of course, but with a days walk of over 20 miles, significant.

The small village of Hopesay was pleasant, as was the church, and a mental note made to visit one day. Today there was neither the time nor the inclination and I pressed on initially climbing and then descending to Kempton where I crossed the B4385 to enter fields again and then onto a good and very straight track. It was at this point that I discovered my recently repaired boot heels had both come off! Of course they were nowhere to be seen, but even if I'd found them, there would be nothing I could have done. Fortunately, other than a softer heel strike, they were still walkable.

Down to a small road, across that and I began the long ascent of Bury Ditches Hill Fort. It is less than 400 metres high but I had walked just under 20 miles (note the mixed measurement units!) so it seemed harder than it was and I was relieved to reach the top. Again this would be something that would warrant a separate visit but I continued on. From here, Clun is downhill all the way, but the village does not come into view until the woodland clears, it then looks tantalisingly close. Most of the remainder of the walk is along a narrow lane, but there is a short section that leaves it to cross a field, taking a more direct line. I passed the Youth Hostel which I visited a year or so ago when I rode with friends from Snowdonia to Tewkesbury to raise money for charity, and walked the final few minutes into Clun, electing to aim directly for the castle as my meeting point was the castle car park.

This section was around 12 miles actually and bought the days walking of Stages 4 and 5 to 22 miles.

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