"Hey and away we go" - March 2007
Hergest Ridge Walks with a Camera
Walks with a Camera © Geoff’s Pages 2011
In common with many people, I suspect, the first time I heard of Hergest Ridge was in the mid-70s, when Mike Oldfield released his second album bearing the name of this whalebacked hill on the Herefordshire - Radnorshire border (the first, I hardly need add, was Tubular Bells). Curiously, it was the album "Ommadawn" released the following year that contained the song "On Horseback", which suggests "So if you feel a little glum, To Hergest Ridge you should come".  ("Hey and away we go, through the grass, across the snow" etc etc). We felt a little glum last May when we first attempted this walk - the BBC's forecast was for one or two little scattered showers, but the aftercast (is there such a thing?) showed the large area of rain that settled on the area. We reached the top, decided we were wasting our time in the driving, persistent rain, and returned to Kington and the car to eat our sandwiches. Inevitably, it stopped raining shortly after we drove away... Offa's Dyke path runs the length of the ridge - there is no problem with pathfinding - and leads inexorably over the Welsh border and down into the little village of Gladestry and the Royal Oak. "Are you serving food?" - "Yes, here's the menu - oh, and there's fresh cod and chips..." It was just the right fuel for the walk back to Kington - great fish, clearly deep fried to order in wonderfully crisp batter, and home-made chips too (none of those frozen imposters!).
Well fed and watered, we headed back towards the car - this time following a route along the lower eastern slopes of the ridge, via Upper Rabber and its dingle. The very pleasant path skirts the edge of open country, climbing to around 1100' before eventually regaining the outward route to descend past Hergest Croft and its gardens to Kington.
Kington shop front Above Hergest Croft Atop the ridge - Monkey Puzzle trees! The obligatory peaty pool On Hergest Ridge - view to Hanter Hill and the distant Radnor Forest On Hergest Ridge - tree and sheep Gladestry - curious symbol (anyone know what it represents?) Gladestry Looking back to Gladestry Rabber Dingle, astride the border, and the view to the Black Mountains Bage (dingle?) Hergest valley view near Bage Last look at the ridge

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