Pen Yr Ole Wen

Distance: 6 miles

Time: 2.5-3 hours

Difficulty: moderate

Parking: Shortwood National Trust Pay & Display car park GL6 6PP (free for members) or free on road parking just outside car park.

Refreshments: Coffee van during peak times at National Trust car park.

Other info: There are cows on Edge Common and please be mindful of roads that you have to cross at a couple of points in the route (These are easily spotted if you follow the all trails route map).

One of our favourite Cotswold walks at all times of year. This route leads you along peaceful woodland tracks and out onto hillsides with breath-taking views over villages nestled in the Cotswold hills. Better still, once you’re away from Haresfield Beacon and Standish woods, it’s an incredibly quiet walk with few others around.

The Bruce Friendship trail is twinned with an equally beautiful part of the Bruce Trail in Ontario, Canada as a mark of friendship and cooperation between the two trails.

The route is very easy to follow as it has been signed at key points with a special green marker disc labelled ‘Bruce Friendship trail’. You’ll start in Standish woods which comes alive in Spring with bluebells and spring flowers, before escaping the crowds and heading across huge open fields and into the beautiful Pitchcombe woods, which offers glimpses down the valley at Pitchcombe nestled in the hills.

You’ll then head up onto Edge common, a steep section but it’s worth it for the stunning views that open up over the Painswick valley. There are cows on Edge Common but they do tend to keep to themselves and have never shown any interest in us.

The final part of the walk takes you through another peaceful woodland before looping back around to Haresfield Beacon, which offers perhaps the best views of the day. You’ll see over the Severn estuary and as far as the Brecon Beacons on a clear day and it’s a perfect spot for a picnic. The walk brings you back round to the national trust car park via Haresfield Topograph. This section is a great final spot for the dogs to run free and is a very popular spot with dog walkers.

This is a great walk at all times of year, as unlike a lot of Cotswold walks it doesn’t get too muddy. Do let us know if you give this one a try.

Thanks for reading,

Cara, Andy, Poppy & Maple x

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