Shropshire: Wroxeter, Church Stretton, Caer Caradoc (February/March 2020)

  • Wroxeter Roman City, Wroxeter, Shrewsbury SY5 6PJ
  • Atcham
  • Cantlop bridge
  • Acton Burnell
  • Langley chapel - 10am-4pm from Nov-Mar
  • Cardington
  • Caer Caradoc, Church Stretton SY6 6JN
  • Long Mynd
  • Manstone Rock, Ratlinghope, Shrewsbury SY5 0NF

Wroxeter Roman city

Church Stretton

Caer Caradoc

Caer Caradoc is one of the hills in Shropshire that makes it an area of outstanding beauty. We trod its summit in a ~10km loop passing by Hope Bowdler Hill on 1 March (2020). This was our first contact with the Shropshire hills.

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We wanted to have a go at the Shropshire hills and settled for one of the flanks of Church Stretton. Caer Caradoc looked shorter and easier than the Long Mynd, and since Elena was 7th month pregnant, we opted for that option. We could only make a late start as the weather was uncertain till the late morning, with a few showers, although predicted as cloudy (but not rainy) for the day. So we spent this time in Church Stretton instead. When we finally got started, we did not plan to get till Caer Caradoc since time was amputated from the morning and the weather was still unclear as to its afternoon intentions. Already on the first summit, on the flank of the Hope Bowdler Hill, it got very windy and showering violently. As quickly as it started, it stopped and we enjoyed a quiet and sunny talk until it turned all black again, with the hills in front getting absorbed in darkness, first from the sun gone and then disappearing in the fog. It hailed profusely for a few minutes, which was really a wondrous and enchanting spectacle. After that, it was all sun for the rest of the day, although the ground got quite wet in spaces. This was the first walk maybe where Julia was leading for much of the walk (at least in its first phase) and also expressed genuine and exalted admiration at the scenery. Down the first hill and towards Caer Caradoc, Julia fell on the muddy, soaked floor, and we had to change her. The ascension to Caer Caradoc was a bit more difficult than expected and Julia and Elena sheltered by a rock while Fabrice completed to the top, enjoying the panoramic views and to get a glimpse of what was on the other side. More Shropshire. We got back but could not follow the main road which was not going in the right direction, so we cut through fields, very wet again, and we had to jump a gate to get back to the road. Fabrice closed the loop running to fetch back the van. A long hike (9.4km in 4h52), especially as Luz was almost part of it. Elena got, not precisely sick, but unwell in the night, though possibly as a result of the Greek food we got after in the pub of the village.