It is over a year since I last walked in Dorset. At that time I hiked a stretch of coast between Kimmeridge and Lulworth Cove with Rollo – I was recovering from a stomach upset; at the end I crawled into the cove on my knees!
Our village has a walking group and I joined them on Saturday for a circular walk starting from a car park close to Hardy’s Cottage (SY725921). Our way took us through woodland, across heath, farmland, along footpaths and bridleways. The going was fairly even and easy but the walk will be memorable for the number and diversity of stiles we scrambled over. I think we may have crossed about 15.
After a succession of unusually warm and sunny days the weather had become misty so the far-reaching views we might have expected from certain vantage points did not materialise. But a walk is much more than a sequence of views and opportunites to observe wildlife and to gather blackberries and sloes at this time of year. Not to mention the fungi, notably the showy Russula I noticed as we walked. And we stopped by the gate at Kingston Dairy House for a group photo.
During the walk, and especially over lunch at the Pine Lodge Farm Tearoom after, I got to know the Winterborne Walkers all of whom I discover are pretty much neighbours, in that we live within easy walking distance within the village.
A couple of days later I was filing my OS maps and related booklets into a box for storage in the cupboard under the stairs. I found the earlier photos and stuff I wrote down after the first two walks Rollo and I did. Before I started my blog. I was just about to send her an email when the phone rang and it was the lady herself. We now have our next walk in view.