After a couple of rest days following last week’s eighty odd miles, on Wednesday, I left the car at work and walked home taking an extra turn or two to get eight and a half miles under my belt. I had a taste of winter with some rain which turned to hail for a while.
|The Christmas Big Wheel|
Thursday comprised of a walk into work and, afterwards, a walk along the Grand Union canal into the heart of Birmingham bedecked in all it’s Christmassy splendour. In Brum, I got changed in the toilets of Symphony Hall before going to see Ade Edmundson and The Bad Shepherds at that other great venue, the Town Hall. A taxi home completed the day.
Friday, I had to walk into work to collect the car which I had left on Wednesday. I felt a bit tired and the walk was much harder work than it should have been.
My mother went into Solihull hospital on Friday for a hip operation so no walk on Friday evening ( for either of us ).
After visiting on Saturday and finding myself in Solihull, I decided to try the Solihull Green Man Trail. This is a walk of around twenty one miles from Solihull town centre to Castle Bromwich. The only map that I could find was one of those leaflets you can pick up from the library so I had to guess at parts of the route.
|Follow the Green Man|
The trail went through Meriden and Brueton parks ( it felt a little odd to walk part of the Brueton parkrun course ) before crossing Lovelace Avenue ( known locally as Millionaires’ Row ) and the M42 for the first time.
I went a little awry in Bentley Heath but managed to find my way to Knowle and the Kenilworth Road. This was followed with a little off-roading to Temple Balsall. It was then back to the fields for a few miles until reaching Barston.
After walking part of Brueton parkrun earlier, I now realised that I was following part of the Arden Nine ( which I ran earlier in the year ) towards Hampton in Arden.
After a short spell on the road, it was over a stile and through the fields towards Bickenhill after recrossing the M42. Crossing one field I could see a line of somethings reflecting my headlight. It was only when I got closer did I realise that the somethings were sheep’s eyes – a bit spooky !
A little navigational malfunction around Bickenhill caused me a bit of headscratching before finding a path across a muddy field to the A45 and the NEC.
From the NEC, I followed a path between the airport and the railway which brought me to Marston Green and then I was on familiar ground for the final couple of miles. The Green Man Trail officially ends at Castle Bromwich Hall but I stopped off as it passed the bottom of my road.
As is fairly usual for a Sunday night, I took a walk to The Griffin to add another seven and a half miles and bring the weekly total to sixty two miles.