It was such a glorious day today we decided a walk in woodland to see bluebells was just what we needed. I printed out walk number 63 from the Hertfordshire Walker site and off we went, a few miles down the road to Brookmans Park. Parking for the walk was down a track that was in serious need of some pot hole fixing, but there was plenty of space and it was free.
Next to the car park is Gobions Open Space, a large grassed area with a children’s play area and some exercise equipment. The walk starts alongside the play area, before entering Gobions Wood.
Gobions Wood is a nature reserve managed by The Herts and Middlesex Wildlife Trust, mostly consisting of woodland, but also hedges, grassland, and wetlands. It also contains remnants of some landscaped ‘pleasure gardens’ that used to be part of the Gobions Estate, a private estate from the 14th to 18th centuries.
Walk 63 is a 2 mile loop taking in much of the nature reserve, and passing through many areas of bluebells, the main reason we’d chosen this walk at this time of year. They were beautiful, especially in the eastern section of the reserve, between points 6 & 7 on the route map.
The walk consisted of footpaths, footbridges over brooks, and steps. We followed the southern edge of the woods and could see across fields to the Folly Arch, a local landmark. There are the remains of an old sewage works down one path, an old canal down another and there is a brick bridge that is no longer safe to walk across. This bridge was near some redwood trees which came as a surprise to me. We saw a couple of dog memorial benches, which was a lovely concept I’d not seen before. These were benches which had plaques attached to them in memory of people’s dogs. There are lots of information boards scattered throughout the nature reserve.
Towards the end of the walk, the path follows the edge of Gobions Pond which is a sizeable pond, some of which is used for fishing although there was no one fishing today. The reflections in the pond were stunning, and the kids enjoyed spotting tadpoles, which were still very small.
We saw a couple of examples of fungi, which, along with bluebells, is something the woods are famous for, but mainly in the autumn. We may be back to hunt for more fungi when autumn rolls round, but we’ll enjoy our spring and summer walks first and will definitely use the Hertfordshire Walker site again, the walk instructions were very clear.