A hill climb, old coaching road and secluded valley
4.5 km (3 miles)
This short walk takes you south along the old coaching road that once provided the main route between North Mymms and South Mimms. It opens up into a rural valley surrounded by rolling wooded hills and includes footpaths edged by hedgerows rich in wild flowers. There is an option near the end for refreshments at The Woodman Inn at nearby Water End.
- There is plenty of parking near North Mymms Church (except when services are being held).
- Head south along the lane towards North Mymms Training Centre.
- After about 500m, this paved part of the lane turns sharp right and your way is straight ahead, through a gate and along a bridleway.
- The path, which starts flat, veers slightly to the right and after about 300m starts to climb steadily through Cangsley Grove.
- This climb lasts for almost 1km through rich woodland until the path opens out into a wide vista across a secluded valley few will be familiar with. Rolling hills surround this peaceful spot and this is a good place for a short stop to enjoy the view. Take the footpath almost immediately on your left which follows the southern edge of Cangsley Grove and then almost doubles back heading north east.
- This path soon reaches a footpath crossroads; your way is straight ahead. The path continues in a straight line becoming wider as it approaches Home Farm and the side of the A1(M).
- Here you turn left and follow alongside the west side of the A1(M) until you reach a lane. Here you turn right.
- Soon you reach a footbridge over the A1(M). Here you have a choice of crossing over to Water End for refreshments at The Woodman Inn. If you don't cross the footbridge for refreshments, your journey continues from the west side of the bridge.
- Just beyond the footbridge look out for a clearing in the hedge on the left. There is step stile leading into a field, head diagonally to your right following the path back to North Mymms church. If it is muddy or there is a 'Bull in field' sign, you can walk along the lane and back to St Mary's church instead.