Three Castles Walk, (Skenfrith, White Castle, Grosmont), 22miles (36km)

THAT was a long one.

Also, when the map directions say ‘undulating’… take it as a euphemism. It means hilly. Very hilly.

As part of my training for the 50Km charity walk (if you would like to donate click here), I joined my fellow walker and friend Claire on a ‘stroll’ around her neck of the woods.

We parked just outside Skenfrith Castle (13th Century Fortress, impressive, check out the history here), and headed into the valley towards the next one. The walk was a mixture of fields, road, and woodlands. Lots of lovely streams bubbling away and wet grass from the recent rains. Sheep. Lots of them. And a few fields of cows. Claire I discovered ‘doesn’t do cows’.

I love castles…

… they remind me of the boys when they were little and loved nothing more than a wooden sword, and I could take pictures like this one:

… allow me a moment to cry….

Ok, back to the walk…

…St Bridget’s Church…

The village of Skenfrith is really pretty (I’ve been told the pub is pretty special too).

Half-way (wish) to the next castle, on a bend of the road/blink and you miss it, there’s a resting stone. The inscription on it reads: Travellers Seat, erected 1780, to New Inn 2miles… and various other distances.

The path from here gets a little iffy and muddy for a while, and it takes you past the ‘The Traveller’s Rest Inn’ where the horses used to be changed. On the 1860 Ordnance Survey map a smithy is marked at this spot. It is said locally that the tiny building on the right is the smithy which closed in about 1812 and was known as Rhydd-y-ago Forge.

…, Travellers’ Rest Inn…

Just when we thought we wouldn’t never get to the castle…

… we did… (and stopped for an early lunch…).

White Castle is very impressive, and the inner structure of Norman fortress surrounded by a large moat has remained. No crocodiles in the moat, sadly.

But we weren’t even half way by this point… so on we went.

Sheep were a common sight.

And then we climbed the steepest hill EVER… and almost died, but didn’t…

… we just carried on and on and on… because… #girlpower…

… and on till we got to Grosmont where we ticked off the third castle and had the best ice-lolly of our lives… it’s all about the small things…

… small things and more giant hills…

Frankly, I didn’t even had the strength to take more photos, take my word for it, the views were amazing.

It went on for waaaay too long.

And them we had to cross ‘the field with cows’. But what goes on tour stays on tour, sorry. It was a large field, and there were a lot of cows. ’nuff said’.

As you can see from the photos it’s a really pretty walk. It’s really well signposted too. We didn’t have a map and managed not to get lost once. There are a few website with directions too. Just don’t believe the distance they say! Strava told us we walked for 35.9km not 30km as per the instructions!

Probably due to the recent heavy rains the grass was very wet and we waded through some interesting mud sections. Also the millions of buttercups turned our boots yellow… (not happy).

Suffice to say I was quite tired by the time I drove back home…

(this is very good for your legs after exercise… 15/20 minutes… makes a big difference).

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