On Sunday 18th June 13 members set off across Walker’s Hill on a scorching hot day admiring the view across the Vale of Pewsey. After passing Adam’s Grave Long Barrow we descended to the village of Alton Priors, where we visited the source of the Hampshire River Avon. Also visited the Saxon All Saints church and its 1700 year old yew tree and saw the Sarsen stones under the floor, possibly part of a stone circle. Crossing the field to Alton Barnes we then discovered a standing stone with the image of the crop circle featured on a 1990 Led Zeppelin album cover engraved on it. From there it was on to the tea rooms for coffee and cake.
After the break we followed the Kennet and Avon canal to Stanton St Bernard before starting the steady climb to the base of Milk Hill, a short drinks break preceded the ascent through thousands of orchids to the highest point in Wiltshire. At the summit there was another drinks break to recover and to allow the leader to catch up. It was then a steady downhill walk along a section of the Wansdyke back to the start.
Descending Walker's Hill
Which is the oldest? The combined age of all the walkers or the yew tree (circa 1700 years old)?
From top right anti-clockwise:
Source of the Hampshire River Avon, White Horse, a stile and resting place for the coffin and ancient mystic carvings? No the cover of a Led Zeppelin album!
A view of the Alton Barnes White Horse
Refreshed after Tea and Cake by the canal
Flowers: Orchids and a splash of red (poppies) in a sea of green