The Road goes ever on and on; Down from the door where it began;
Now far ahead the Road has gone; And I must follow, if I can;
Pursuing it with eager feet; Until it joins some larger way;
Where many paths and errands met; And whither then? I cannot say.

[JRR Tolkien, Lord of the Rings]

Sunday, 27 June 2010

National Memorial Arboretum

The route for yesterday’s fresh air and exercise was based entirely on some reasonably local Geocaches, and gave the added bonus that it would take us to a couple of local areas that we have not before visited.

It also took us to the National Memorial Arboretum at Alrewas. We’ve been there a few times, and always seem to find ourselves visiting on unusually busy days. That yesterday was National Armed Forces Day had slipped my mind until we saw how many people were around (many in uniform).

Our route only took us around the edge, but there seem to have been a few changes/additions since we were there last, so I was put in mind to return on a sunny weekday to have another proper look around (and if you ever happen to find yourself driving up or down the A38 past Alrewas, I would recommend pausing to take a look around the place yourself). Here are a few snaps of the bits we passed:

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Leaving the Arboretum, Croxall Lakes was our objective, and more particularly the Noon Pole there. Apparently, there are a series of these poles located throughout the National Forest, their feature being that for 10-15 minutes at ‘true noon’ on Midsummer and Midwinter’s days, light will shine through the slit in the pole (true noon being 1306 in summer in this neck of the woods). This one is made of English Oak:


By coincidence rather than by design, by the time we had found the Geocache we were seeking, and sat and had a spot of lunch, it was 1pm, so we hung around for a while. Finally, at 1.16 the light shone through, then the sun promptly went behind a big cloud and off we set for our return leg.

A smidge over 9 miles were walked in total. Being the land of flatness, most of our ascent was created by going over bridges!

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