Start / End: Allerthorpe Wood car park
Distance: 2.5 miles
Time: 1 hour
Map: OS 294
This accessible off-lead walk is another lovely stroll that is great for dogs and humans that may have less mobility. Great for ball throwing - Bill loves it here!
1. Although not strictly in the Yorkshire Wolds I thought I would add this walk for dogs and people that are perhaps a bit less mobile or just want an easy stroll. I often walk here and it is great to do a variety of short, medium and long walks in these lovely woods, depending how Bill and I are feeling on the day. The main paths are also suitable for mobility scooters, off road bikes and there are sometimes horse-riders here.
Start in the Forestry Commission car park off Common Lane (note you can park on the road if this is full but make sure you keep over to the side as the road is quite narrow and beware of the many pot holes!). Cross the road and go through the gate.
2. Turn onto the main path on your left and follow this all the way to the crossroad, the path carries straight ahead or runs left to right under the pylons. Turn left.
3. Walk along the path until crossing under the first pylon you come to. Just after this point there is a path to your right, which you should take. The path looks quite narrow to begin with but soon opens out into a flat, pine needle covered, accessible path that runs through the woods.
In AD 1086 Allerthorpe Common was recorded in the Doomsday book as Aluuarstorp. This suggests it was a Scandinavian settlement, where Aluuarstorp means "thorpe" or village belonging to a man called Alfard.
4. The path bends round to the right at the top, so continue following it until you find yourself at the junction with the main path again heading right. Ignore the main path and carry on to your left, then right following the wide path along the top of the wood.
5. Follow the wide sandy path to where it forks left and right again. (in the winter this path can get quite muddy and full of puddles - Bill loves it!). The left-hand path, through the gate takes you towards Allerthorpe Village - which I include in my long walk in Allerthorpe Woods. Take the right-hand fork to follow the path through the trees, as it heads back towards the path with the pylons. Here it gets a little bit narrow again for a short while.
6. At the path with the pylons heading right, carry on straight ahead. Follow the path, which can get a bit muddy after rain, with the fenced off nature reserve section on your right.
Yorkshire Wildlife Trust lease this nature reserve and the entire wood is being managed to ensure that this rare example of northern lowland heath maintains its biodiversity. As such, adders have been reintroduced into the reserve, so be mindful of them sunbathing on grassy banks, rocks or tracks from mid-morning until early afternoon from spring through to Autumn. Take care and if you need it (hopefully not) the nearest vet that has an anti-venom is Wicstun Veterinary Group at Market Weighton (https://www.wicstunvetgroup.co.uk/)
7. Follow this path all the way through the woods heading back towards the car park. In wet weather some parts of the path can become a bit water-logged but you can walk round the muddy puddles - or just go and sit in them like Bill!! - or wear wellies! In dry weather, though, it is a lovely shaded stroll through the pine trees, where you can spot hollyhocks, mushrooms, wild honeysuckle, squirrels, heather, bracken and all manner of insects.
Pollen counts taken during the mid 1970s show that the common has been covered with heather and birch with a little pine for the last 2,000 years. As the trees were cleared for more pasture land during Anglo-Saxon times the pollen count shows a marked increase in the amount of grass pollen.
8. At the end of the path where it meets the main path again, go back through the gate to the car park across the road. Nearby pubs in Allerthorpe, Melbourne and Sutton on Derwent are great places to grab a drink and bite to eat after your stroll.
Trees, Bill, and lovely vistas......................in Allerthorpe Woods