This Herefordshire walk offers some wonderful views of the Black Mountains without too much ascent. The route follows tracks and paths north of Craswall and includes the opportunity to visit the remains of Craswall Abbey. Despite the title, an ascent of Hay Bluff is not included but could easily be added to the route.
Calculated time is computed with the distance, the height difference, and an average speed of 2.2 mph. For an intermediate walker, this time includes small breaks.
(D)There is limited parking close to the Bull's Head pub (grid ref. SO277360). The pub is currently closed (11/04/18) but you can still use the car park. From the road junction by the pub, walk north along the lane to reach St Mary's church on your right. Bear right just after the church and then almost immediately left onto a signed bridleway. Follow this to Abbey Farm (grid ref. SO273378).
(1)Turn left here, with the farm on your right, to pass the remains of Craswall Abbey on your left and walk up to the road. Turn left along the road as far as a small copse on your left. Here leave the road and follow the bridleway heading northwest at grid ref. SO270370. Stay on this bridleway (the Three Rivers Ride) as it climbs easily to reach the Welsh Border at a broad col (grid ref. SO251373).
(2)You have also entered the Brecon Beacons National Park. There are a number of paths in this area and it is important that you locate the return route to the start. Just prior to the border you will have passed a small wooded area on your right. The onward route runs parallel to the southern boundary of this wood. Having enjoyed the views from the highest point of walk with Hay Bluff easily recognised, turn around and follow the bridleway through open country along the southern side of the small wood keeping the boundary of the open country on your left. The route the enters an enclosed green lane and continues to a point where a tarmac lane appears on the left (grid ref. SO267362).
(3)Ignore the tarmac lane, instead veering right to continue following the green lane in a south-easterly direction. After about three quarters of a mile you reach a bridleway junction at grid ref. SO278357. Turn left here, and walk to the road. The start of the walk is a few yards along this road to your left.(A)
D/A : mi 0 - alt. 1024ft - Bull's Head pub
1 : mi 1.46 - alt. 1312ft - Turn left at Abbey Farm
2 : mi 3.51 - alt. 1572ft - Follow bridleway at Welsh border
3 : mi 5.09 - alt. 1227ft - Veer right along green lane
D/A : mi 6.18 - alt. 1027ft - Bull's Head pub
This walk explores the Herefordshire countryside close to the border with Wales and the Black Mountains (which are part of the Brecon Beacons National Park). The route uses a mixture of quiet country lanes, field paths and green lanes and it would be useful to have the correct OS 1:25000 map to help with navigation. The route also passes the remains of Craswall Abbey.
Visorando and this author cannot be held responsible in the case of accidents or problems occuring on this walk.
Global average : 3.83/5
Number of opinions : 2
Description quality : 4/5
Routemap quality : 3/5
Walk interest : 4.5/5
Global average : 3 / 5
Date of walk
Description quality : Average
Routemap quality : Disappointing
Walk interest : Good
This is a spring/summer walk. In February it is extremely muddy for 50% of the walk. Written directions not quite precise enough so went wrong way twice. Therefore need other map resources to ensure you do not get lost. If relying on mobile data, the start of the walk has no signal. Would do the walk again as on sunny, warm days the view will be worth it
Many thanks for your feedback We have put a note in the walk description mentioning that the pub is now closed. Please feel free to post any photos if you have any!
Global average : 4.67 / 5
Date of walk
Description quality : Very good
Routemap quality : Good
Walk interest : Very good
The road to the start of the walk from hay-on-wye is single track for the majority but has a fair amount of passing places.
The pub is now closed but you can still park there and it does not look like be opening anytime soon either.
The walk itself is not that difficult and the route is fairly easy to follow with lots of lovely views, it is also fairly easy to extend it at a few points.
Although when we did the walk it was pretty muddy so had to divert quite a bit to avoid the mud. Well worth doing and if in area would happily do it again.
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Enjoy spectacular views towards the Black Mountains and Brecon Beacons, keep your eyes peeled for lots of wonderful wildlife, and discover hidden heritage along the way.
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