Three Cotswold Hills Near Winchcombe
14 people attending
10 places left
Our walk will start in the Cotswold town of Winchcombe, once site of a great Saxon abbey and capital of Mercia. Through the grounds of Sudeley Castle, home and final resting place of Henry VIII's last (surviving) wife Katherine Parr. Rising up the escarpment we will visit Belas Knapp, a neolithic burial mound. From there we walk along to Cleeve Hill (the highest point in the Cotswolds at 330m) overlooking Cheltenham with great views over the Vale of Evesham and Severn valley looking over 4 or five counties on clear day.
We'll continue around the edge of the escarpment dropping down and re-climbing back up twice ensuring further good views. There's a couple of good spots for your picnic/packed lunch and options for a pub-stop on the route or possible at the end.
It's a 12.5 mile / 20 km walk with a total rise of 618m / 2027 feet so more than a stroll, probably moderate in terms of physicality. We will be crossing stiles not all of which will be easily dog accessible. Some of the farms in this area may have ewes-in-lamb and cattle with calves-at-foot so please consider this if you are thinking of bringing your hound. If we leave at 10:00 we should be back in Winchcombe by around 16:00 to 16:30.
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What to bring
Water: bring at least two litres
Medicines: if you have hay fever, diabetes, minor ailments etc.
Day rucksack: typically 20-30 litres, they are comfortable to wear and allow you to use your arms freely
Boots: waterproof and breathable and designed for hiking NOT trainers. We will be passing by several natural springs where the ground will most likely be muddy.
Socks: proper walking socks will keep your feet dry and help prevent blisters
Layered clothing: lets you quickly adapt to changes in the weather and body temperature. Go for a base layer (vest or t-shirt) and a mid layer (a micro fleece or shirt) and in cooler weather add an outer layer (a windproof jacket or thick fleece)
Trousers: ideally no jeans as they become heavy and cold in the rain, breathable fabrics are more comfortable and dry and on warm days shorts are OK
Waterproof jacket: essential when hiking in all but the calmest of weather, breathable fabrics are more comfortable and dry
Gloves: Windproof, or better still, waterproof gloves are the best choice, bring a spare pair if expecting rain
Hat or cap: stay warm in winter and shaded in summer
Sunglasses: for any sunny day, even in winter
Food & drink
Snacks: bring biscuits, energy bars, gels, bananas, chocolate or dried fruit for example and put them somewhere easy to get hold of
Lunch: bring a packed lunch unless otherwise stated
Pub stop: there is a good pub on the route and the chance for a pub visit in Winchcombe at the end of the walk.