Christmas guided walk 2021 - Simonside
It maybe wasn’t the season weather I was expecting for our traditional Christmas Walk up to the Christmas Tree on the top of Simonside but at least it was not too cold.
We all met on the Cowhaugh car park, Rothbury, at the start of the walk, and we climbed up initially along St Oswald’s Way, passing Sharpe’s Folly on the track towards Whitton Hillhead.
But before reaching the farm we turned off left crossing through a field before dropping down and rising to Lordenshaws Iron Age Hillfort.
At Lordenshaws Iron Age Hillfort there is a wealth of archaeological remains of earthworks, trackways and a burial cairn, which reflects thousands of years of human activity. Today traces of several round stone houses can be seen inside the fort, these belong to a later settlement built during the Roman occupation.
After crossing over the Lordenshaws car park we climbed up and over The Beacon at a height of 360 metres (1200ft).
The path then levelled out for a short while before we passed through a stile and we started climbing again before reaching Dove crag, which is 395 m (1300ft). The cairn topping Dove crag is a prehistoric burial cairn.
After visiting the Simonside Christmas tree it was time for lunch sheltered behind the large summit cairn before we retraced our steps.
After the strong winds of recent weeks, we did not drop back through the forest, as originally planned but instead came back down on St Oswald’s Way via Whittondean before joining the Whitton Hillhead road.
We were back in Rothbury for good time.
Many thanks for everybody who joined me on the walk and all the best for Christmas 2021.