It seemed an age since the last long walk, so members of the Longer Walks Group were anxious at Tottenham Hale Station to be on their way for the short train journey to Roydon, although the wearily apologetic station announcer teased us briefly with threats of delays due to broken-down trains … The good news was that the predicted dire weather did not materialise and we were lucky enough to enjoy a fine sunny day in this dismal Autumn.
Our walk was circular, initially by following the Essex/Hertfordshire border along the river, lock and reservoir systems of the Stort and Lee and returning to Roydon Station through countryside via the village of Nazeing.
We enjoyed a splendid lunch at King Harold’s Head at Bumble’s Green where the staff were kind enough to supply a large roll of silver duck tape to patch up a twenty-year old boot that had lost its soul [sic].
In the summer this walk would be described as easy but the recent heavy rains had rendered the paths muddy and quite slippery, as one of the Group discovered to her discomfort. The wide rutted track near Dobbs Weir was particularly challenging as we had to make our way through pools of water, the depths of which were not known. The mystery was that how some walkers with no protective outerwear managed to complete the walk unscathed while others travelled home looking glumly at their mud-bespattered overtrousers! – or is it just a question of balance?