Passing by Goram’s Chair, Tarn Lake, Beech Cathedral, Lily Pond, Rhododendron Walk, Rustic Lodge, Woodman’s Cottage.
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/A) Start at Blaise Cafe. Walk towards the Blaise Castle House, along the surfaced path with play area on left hand side. At path junction near house bear right onto a path leading slightly downhill. Continue on the surfaced path down into the gorge with iron railings on left hand side.
(1) Cross over Mill Bridge at bottom of the hill, and take surfaced path running parallel to Hazel Brook. Continue past Tarn Lake, following the path along Hazel Brook Drive passing under Goram’s Chair and then up a slight hill with Beech Cathedral rising majestically to the left. Pass Lily Pond and cross the brook. Nearing the brow of a small rise, bear left off the drive, down some steps leading to the brook.
(2) Turn left, crossing concrete sluice. Bear right following the brook, looking out for a flight of steps flanked by a stone wall on the left. Proceed up steps, known as Jacob’s Ladder. Fields on the right are part of Cherry Orchard Farm. The wall turns left at the top. Keep on the path until you reach a gap in the wall. Walkthrough this with Henbury Golf Course now on your right. The walk continues across the top of Beech Cathedral, with fine views through the trees into the Gorge below.
(3) Continue to a pair of rocky outcrops, again on your left, which form Goram’s Chair. Here there are fine views across the Gorge to the Castle and Lover’s Leap. Do not venture out onto the rocks. Continue until you reach a wooden bench with the scenic viewpoint towards the Bristol Channel and Wales. Continue on the same path, past an old boundary stone inscribed CB 1904, until you reach two felled Beech trunks. Bear left here and you are now in Rhododendron Walk planted in 1830, and which continues until you reach the main drive with Rustic Lodge on your right hand side.
(4) Turn left and follow surfaced path past Woodman’s Cottage and continue down into the gorge.
At the bottom cross over Mill Bridge, and then back up to Blaise Castle House and Cafe.(D/A)
D/A : mi 0 - alt. 180ft - Blaise Cafe
1 : mi 0.41 - alt. 194ft - Mill Bridge
2 : mi 1.05 - alt. 85ft - Concrete sluice
3 : mi 1.36 - alt. 246ft - Rocky outcrops
4 : mi 1.69 - alt. 279ft - Surfaced path
D/A : mi 2.44 - alt. 180ft - Blaise Cafe
The walk uses both surfaced paths and woodland trails covering a mixture of terrains. Includes steep ascents.
Visorando and this author cannot be held responsible in the case of accidents or problems occuring on this walk.
Blaise Estate is a Grade II listed historic landscape with recorded human activity dating back 2,000 years. It became a ‘pleasure park’ to a variety of wealthy private owners and has been influenced through the landscape designer Humphrey Repton. It was purchased by the Corporation of Bristol in 1926 for £20,175.
The Heritage Lottery funded a project to restore this historic landscape and public park – an investment of approx £6.5 million. Visitor facilities including a café, play area and performance space have been introduced whilst the historic nature of the site has been conserved. These circular guided walks have been developed to provide reassurance and information for those who wish to experience all the estate offers. This includes spectacular views, the castle folly, lakes, scheduled ancient monuments, the 18th Century mansion, unique rock formations and designed landscape features.
Varying in length, all walks will contain relatively steep ascents/descents. Care should be taken on cliff edges and steep slopes.
Why not end your walk at the Cafe with a freshly made coffee and a slice of homemade cake. Open daily serving hot and cold snacks, drinks and a large variety of ice cream.
The Church of St Mary the Virgin dates back to 1093, with various rebuilding over the years until an extensive refurbishment in 1878. Look out for two notable graves; an obelisk memorial to the Egyptologist Amelia Edwards and coloured head and foot stones of ‘Scipio Africanus’, a negro slave.
The gorge is at its deepest below Lover’s Leap. You can see massive cliffs of steeply tilted white Carboniferous Limestone. It is difficult to see exactly how the Gorge was formed. It would have been directly influenced by the most recent Ice Age up to 100,000 years ago.
Built in 1795 for John Scandret Harford by William Paty. A solid, simple design placed on a rise so as to appear bigger. Harford was responsible for commissioning landscape architect Humphrey Repton and thereafter, architect John Nash who designed the Orangery, Dairy and nearby Blaise Hamlet. More ornate additions representing a Greek classical influence were made to both the exterior and interior of the house from 1832-3 by C R Cockerell on instruction from J S Harford Jnr.
Walk passing by Iron Age Hill Fort, Echo Gate, Arbutus walk, Kingsweston Down and wildflower meadows.
A moderate walk suitable for a family with older children but unsuitable for wheels. Takes you through quieter parts of the Blaise estate and Henbury gold course.
It is 150 years since The Clifton and Durdham Downs (Bristol) Act, 1861 secured the Downs as a place of recreation for us all – forever. This trail and a second trail exploring the Promenade and Observatory Hill celebrate this anniversary and explore the rich and fascinating history of the Downs.
This is a circular walk from Pill.
Contoured walk with a focus on 18th century historic features in semi-ancient woodland.
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The GPS track and description are the property of the author.