First, a word of explanation. For quite some time I’ve been including walks in my posts, and most of you seem to enjoy taking a stroll with me. It occurred to me the other day (when I was out walking, of course) that I could make this a regular feature, and invite people to join in and share, if they want to. Lots of you will have favourite walks, and I would love to hear about them.
So, let’s start with Greatham Creek. Now, unless you’re a local, I know you will be reading this as Great Ham, but the pronunciation is, in fact, Gree Tham. Funny old language, isn’t it? Not long since, I took you on a wander through the snowdrops in Greatham Village. That could well be the start point for this walk, but I am choosing to do it differently today.
You did notice that I called it Seal Sands road, didn’t you? The area is highly industrialised, with smoke belching from chimneys on the skyline, but for a number of years this has been home to a colony of seals. So much so that, passing by on the bus to Middlesbrough with my nose stuck in a book, I sometimes even forget to notice them. Not today, though.
Clear and bright with just a little nip to the air, it was perfect for socialising with seals.
There is a car park on the Seal Sands road (the A189), right by the hide. When you’ve had enough of playing hide and seek, cross over the creek on the road bridge and follow the public footpath off to your left. Work is currently in progress to extend the footpath on the other side of the bridge, which will lead to another hide.
The creek is tidal, so the water level is variable. The number of seals basking on the sands varies too. To be truthful, it isn’t always the weather for basking. When the skies are leaden the whole area is very depressing.
Then it veers off to the right, heading towards Greatham Village. The fields were still a little flooded in places, after the heavy rain, but passable, with care. I didn’t have proper walking shoes on and opted to turn back.
The walk continues, passing the derelict Cerebos site and over the railway tracks into Greatham. The “Hope and Anchor” on the High Street is an old favourite of mine, if you need a food or drink stop. Or you can simply retrace your steps at any point. I was only out walking for about an hour, having come with the sole purpose of seeing the seals.
So, that’s my walk for today. I hope you enjoyed it. Now I’m rather hoping that I might tempt a few of you into sharing walks with me? You can include as much or as little detail as you like. A full walk would be great but if you want to show me just a photo or two from a walk you know, I’d be happy with that too. My walks will mostly be in the north east of England, because that’s home, but now and then I might just stray.
If you decide to participate, please leave a link to your walk in the comments box below. Let’s see how far we can get, shall we? I’m really looking forward to it.