Monthly Archives: April 2012

Malverns Refelections


Since the announcement that most of the country was officially “in drought” it seems to have done nothing but rain and as I write this, on Sunday morning, it is still raining.

The weather pattern in the Malverns was fairly predictable in that it rained most days with the only doubt being when and for how long? During the first week on my own I started two walks at 7.30am in order to beat the morning showers. This wasn’t practicable when I was joined by Bea, Amanda & Karen during the second week. Amanda felt unwell at times so missed a couple of walks and Karen’s B&B left a lot to be desired. Nonetheless, we did enjoy a few walks along the tops of the Malverns and whilst we were caught out in the rain a couple of times, we didn’t get too wet. In all, I managed 7 walks totalling 42 miles and 7,380ft of ascent.


Malverns Linear Walk

We (I) decided to do something different today and to do a 5 mile linear walk across the tops of the Malvern Hills with 1,200ft of ascent and 1,700ft of descent. I met Bea & Karen at Malvern railway station and then drove in my car to join with Amanda at the British Camp car park close to the Malvern Hills Hotel. This meant that we could start at a point some 500ft higher than that at Malvern station and cut out some of the slog. We crossed a number of minor summits (Black Hill, Pinnacle Hill, Jubilee Hill & Perseverance Hill) before descending to the road at Upper Wyche. There then followed a 500ft climb over Summer Hill to reach the highest point of the Malverns at Worcestershire Beacon (1,395ft). It was on this final climb that we had to contend with a brief hailstorm. We had seen this approaching and, as the wind was behind us, it wasn’t too bad and was over in 10 minutes.

As they say, it was all downhill from here (1,100ft) back to Malvern station where we jumped into Karen’s car for the shuttle back to British Camp to recover Amanda’s car and mine.


British Camp

Karen joined Bea & me today for a 6?? mile walk with 1,550ft of ascent along the southern end of the Malverns to British Camp & Herefordshire Beacon. Starting from Hollybush, we had a steady climb to the point where we made a diversion to the Obelisk that I visited last week. From here we followed a very muddy track around the side of Swinyard Hill. This was used by “The Landrover Experience” to give owners/potential owners a feel for the off-road capabilities of their vehicles. Whilst this is, no doubt, great fun for the drivers; it does nothing for the state of the tracks which are also used by walkers. We then made our way around the side of British Camp/Herefordshire Beacon before stopping at the Malvern Hills Hotel for a welcome cup of tea.

Suitably refreshed, we then faced a steep 300ft climb to the top of British Camp at Herefordshire Beacon from where there were great views of the surrounding countryside. Yet more ups and down took us across Hangman’s Hill & Swinyard Hill before retracing our steps on the final part of the walk back to our cars.


Bredon Hill

Amanda was feeling unwell today so that just left Bea & me to tackle Bredon Hill. The 7¾ mile walk with 1,200ft of ascent started from Great Comberton. There were a few spots of rain before we set off so it was on with the over trousers and waterproof jacket. Our path took us across fields to Elmley Castle where we stopped for coffee before the climbing started in earnest. There was a 700ft pull ahead of us to reach the top of Bredon Hill. A little over half way into this climb we exited Long Plantation from where we were afforded distant views. Sadly, these were spoiled by the rain showers that were rapidly approaching. We had time though for a final cup of coffee before making for the rather ugly tower at the top of Bredon Hill. It was here where the rains hit us, but only for 15 minutes or so. My camera had long since been hidden away from the elements and the picture of the tower was downloaded from the internet. The limited number of my own photographs is also explained by the mixed weather.

Our descent took us through more woodland; carpeted in places with bluebells. We were lucky enough to see 2 herds of deer, each about 40 in number, whilst out on this walk. After crossing a few more fields, occupied by lambs and their mothers, we were soon back at the cars.


Blackmore End

I was joined today by Beatrix & Amanda who will be with me for the week. Karen is joining us for a few days on Tuesday. We decided on an easy if fairly uninspiring 6.75 mile walk with just 310ft of ascent. The first mile and a half was on a minor road before we joined the bank of the River Severn. More road walking then led onto field edge paths for the return to my caravan site. The lack of photographs is a reflection of the mediocrity of the walk. The 09:00 start paid off as we completed all but the last 5 minutes of the walk before it started to rain – again!


Callow End

Another bright sunny morning and another 07:30 start. Given the prospect of more rain, I decided on a local 6?? mile walk with just 420ft of ascent starting from Callow End. The route was devised by myself from the OS map and took me across fields to Madresfield before returning via Clevelode. It turned out to be a fairly ordinary walk but had good views of the Malvern Hills and it remained dry which was a bonus.


North end of the Malverns

The weather pattern this week is becoming all too predictable – RAIN. The only doubt is when it will start. Friday morning dawned bright and sunny so I decided on an early start and had my boots on and walking by 07:30. I thought that I would explore the northern end of the Malverns with no particular route in mind other than heading generally for the highest point at Worcestershire Beacon (1,395ft). A steep climb of about 700ft from just outside the town of Great Malvern quickly saw me on top of North Hill. There is a myriad of paths up here so you can wander at will. A few ups and downs and I was then on the push to Worcestershire Beacon.

Even at this early hour, there were a few other walkers about. There was a strong cold wind blowing and it was hat & gloves weather. The return route was largely downhill, contouring around the side of North Hill and back to the car. I’d finished my 4 mile walk with 1,400ft of ascent by 09:40 and headed back to the caravan for a welcome cup of tea. Almost on cue and at the stroke of 11 o’clock there was an almighty cloudburst with hail and thunder. This gave me a feeling of self-satisfaction having had my exercise without getting a soaking.