Carreghofa Circular Trail
Distance: 3.5 miles/5.6km
Difficulty: Easy 1st half. Moderate 2nd half
Duration: 1 ½ hours
Summary: A walk of two halves commencing firstly with a mostly level and easy walk across fields then up a few steps onto the canal towpath leading back towards the village. Secondly, turning away again from the village, across more fields leading to some reasonably steep paths, climbing up towards Llanymynech Rocks NNR (which can be easily accessed as an extra detour) where fabulous views across the open countryside await you. Return down an initially steep and winding bridleway back towards the village and the starting point. The walk can be done in its entirety or either half is a circular walk in its own right.
The walk starts and ends at Walls Bridge, an old hump-backed bridge over the canal adjacent to the junction for Carreghofa Lane.
Following the fingerposts direction, walk to the right along the main road for 50 metres and turn left down the side of the all weather sports cage and down the sloping track. Follow the way-mark arrows carefully as the path zigzags first to the left along the bottom hedgerow to a small bridge on the right which you cross and, keeping right, cross the field to another small bridge. Cross the next field to a pedestrian gate and follow the path over a low boardwalk and on to another gate. The path remains fairly straight across the middle of the next few fields passing through field gates and a pair of kissing gates either side of a track. Cross the next field then pass through a gate next to some old stone posts. Here, the path enters a field where the disused hedgerow is kept on the left hand and leads to a way-mark post in the corner which guides the path user to the right to another post turning the walker left again towards a kissing gate. Cross the small flood-plain to another gate which leads up the steps and onto the canal towpath.
Turn right along the towpath until the next gateway onto the road. Carefully cross the road, rejoin the towpath and continue past Carreghofa Locks under the road bridge and a total of 1.2km until a fingerpost through a gap in the hedge on the right leads onto the roadside. Guided by the fingerpost, turn left along the road for a few metres and turn left up and over the canal. Immediately turn right as indicated by another fingerpost and, keeping to the left hand hedge, pass through a pedestrian gate into a field. Follow the left hand hedge to the next gate then across two more fields to the gate onto the road. Crossing the road, pass through the field gate and over the field to the gate opposite and onto a minor lane. Turn right and within a few metres turn left up the old stone track which is followed to its end. Pass through the pedestrian gate and, keeping the hedge on the right, find the field gate down to the right which has a small gate within it. Pass through and, following the way-marks, wind up the hill on the old track which soon becomes less defined as the path turns sharp right up the hill then passes a large oak. At a way-mark post the path turns left steeply up a sunken lane to a gate passing to the right of a house. The path passes through another gate onto the road.
The fingerpost guides to the right along the minor road but if you wish to visit the NNR you can divert from the circular route at this point and make your own way up to the ‘Rocks’.
Otherwise follow the road to the right for about 75m and drop down the bridleway to the right. This lane runs downhill until it passes some old barns on the right then through a field gate straight ahead next to an ancient stone post marking the old tollgate. Follow the track through the cropped field and pass through the next gate. The track winds on to the right over the old railway and eventually meets the road. Turn left and after 150m find yourself back at the junction with the main road next to Walls Bridge.