Martin George

Entered the Hall of Fame:1st July 2017
Trail Completed:24th May 2017

I had a wonderful 12 days on the Offa's Dyke Path. If you are interested, I've posted a short video from each day on YouTube.

I walked from south to north in May, with good weather most of the way. It is a great path, with a real variety of landscapes over the 177 miles. Some surviving sections of the dyke are very impressive, 1,200 years after it was constructed, and there are plenty of other sites of historical interest, from abbeys and castles to small churches in remote villages, some nice market towns, and some very friendly B&Bs, especially in the north.

I wouldn't say it was an easy walk, with plenty of tough ups and downs, and a couple of long sections on exposed areas that would not be much fun in bad weather, but anyone with a good level of fitness should be able to complete it.

A few thoughts for anyone planning to do the walk:

  • If I had more time, I would have taken 14 days to do the hike. 12 days is certainly doable without having to rush, but there wasn't time to see sights off the path, like Tintern Abbey and Llanthony Priory.
  • Book accommodation in advance, especially on Saturdays. I tried booking three weeks in advance, but could not find anywhere to stay on one Saturday.
  • On the Hatterrall Ridge and the Clwydian Hills sections, take both warm layers to protect from the wind, and sunscreen to protect from the sun.
  • If you have an iPhone, it’s worth downloading offline maps on Google Maps for the length of the walk. It tracks the path very accurately to the metre, and helps you follow it where the signs are ambiguous, or where farmers have ploughed up the path when it crosses their fields.
  • Spring is a great time to do the walk: in mid-May, the bluebells in particular where in full bloom on many sections.
  • Check which direction your guidebook follows the path. Mine went north to south, but I walked south to north. It was useable, not not ideal.

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