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, 20 May 2018

Ben Newe (NJ381142; 565m)

Sunday 20 May

Distance: 2.6 miles
Ascent: around 310m
Weather: Overcast and breezy with a couple of showers
Start Point: end of forestry track at NJ 39678 13966 (there is a car park up the track, but a) I was thwarted in reaching it in Bertie due to overhanging branches; and b) even if I had, it's currently got signs saying it's closed due to forestry operations).

A closed road, a lengthy diversion, a little, easily accessible hill just a mile or so from the diversion route; who needs a rest day in the face of facts like that? Moreover, I needed to get some sort of exercise today, and why take a nice level walk along the Dee when I could nip up a hill?

There were signs that tried to put me off...

...and they made me quite cross for their apparent denial of lawful access rights, without giving any useful information whatsoever. Clearly, I ignored them and (unsurprisingly at just after 7am on a Sunday morning) the only evidence of work I encountered was churned up tracks:

I knew there was a path leading from the nearest forest track to the summit, but with so much disruption to the earth, due to felling, near the top, I wasn't sure whether it would be obvious when I met it, so as the track started to contour the summit, I headed straight up the hillside, soon popping out on the top:

It's a nice pointy hill, with extensive views, although today wasn't the best possible weather to enjoy them. At least the next shower held off until I was on my way down.

I didn't retrace my steps off the summit, nor did I follow the trodden path. Instead I followed the fenceline to the east. With the summit being heavily protected by deep heather and juniper, it perhaps wouldn't be everyone's choice of a good descent route, but it worked fine and I managed not to lose myself down any concealed holes.

I was back at my start point only a little over an hour after setting off, giving me the whole of the rest of the day to be lazy.

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