20100427_Evening Circular Walk – Cawston Woods and Potford’s Dam Pool.
Who : Me and Craig
Where : Cawston, Rugby, Warwickshire, England.
Maps : Ordnance Survey Explorer Map No. 222
Start + End Point : Cawston Grange Estate, SP47,73 and Farthest Point : SP464,726
Approx Distance : 2.2 miles (3.5 km)
Heights : None to speak of really (30-foot rise from Potford’s Dam Pool to Brickyard spinney max)
Following my previous post about an evening wander in the Cawston area of Rugby, here’s a short diary post about another evening stroll around Cawston but this time on the other (southern) side of the Coventry Road. This was again with my son (then aged 8 ) and I really like him wanting to come out with me on these little expeditions; who knows in later life, when he’s bigger and fitter than me, he’ll be taking me out for a walk out in the countryside.
From our home on the Cawston Grange Estate we headed up to The Coventry Road, turned away from Bilton/Rugby and then took a left into Cawston Lane and set off down the country road. The fields on both sides behind the hedges were still pretty much bare, but one in particular had been tilled up into the very distinctive ridge and furrows of a potato crop. I like the strong lines that this produces, especially with the low evening sun casting shadows across the field, enhancing the perspective effect of converging parallel lines.
After a few hundred yards, Cawston Lane makes a bit of a bend to the left with a dirt lay-by on the right, large enough for several cars. From here a path heads off into Cawston Woods (Fox Covert to give the proper name here) passing a quite ugly looking disused circular water treatment construction on the way. Once we were a little further into the woods we were greeted by a carpet of bluebells, one of those sights that just can’t help but lift the spirits – We’re so lucky to have the woods so close to home – it even works for youngsters, evidenced by Craig dashing back and forth along the paths criss-crossing through the flowers.
We eventually arrived at a sizeable farm track that divides the woods in two, and promptly crossed straight over into the trees on the other side (now called Cawston Spinney) to follow a winding narrow path down to a mini-stream and from there we found our way out to a small expanse of water. For description purposes, (although it’s rather subjective) I’d say it’s bigger than a pond but smaller than a lake, maybe a good sized pool is apt enough … but maybe you’d be better off just looking at my pic’s to get an impression of how big it is. My map doesn’t actually name this small reservoir, so I guess any one of several names would fit :- Cawston Woods Reservoir?, Cawston Pond?, Potford’s Dam Lake?, or my personal fave’ Potford’s Dam Pool …. anyone have a definitive answer? Please?
The pool is not an overly exciting place in terms of national landscape, but I like it here! It is very roughly triangular in shape, bounded by the woods down half of one side and a steep bank and a line of trees along another, the remaining margins open up into ploughed farmland. There is a tranquility here that seems a million miles away from the hustle and bustle of everyday life. This was exemplified by a coot sat on its nest in the bank-side reeds, no more than a few feet away from the path – she (or he?) was completely un-phased by our presence.
We had only moved on a short way, when the peaceful almost mirror like waters were well and truly shattered, when a dog appeared all of a sudden, launched itself off the bank, to land with a large splaaa-doosh in the water – quite spectacular, but it did destroy the quiet time we’d just spent watching the coot a few moments earlier. The dog and its owner soon moved on, leaving the pool to return to the placidness of before – Lovely.
Time was now pressing on with daylight giving way to a special pinky-blue light of late evening; We were superbly fortunate to be in the right place at the right time to see the moon rise, peeking over the tree tops of the now shadowy, gloomy woods – Beautiful is an overly used word sometimes, but this was, simply, beautiful!
With evening rapidly drawing in, it was time to head back home and we easily found the path that heads from Potford’s Dam Pool up to Brickyard Spinney. For once the path was actually on the ground here (it often isn’t) which I was really, really happy about, especially as it rose straight through an oil-seed-rape crop as tall as Craig’s shoulders and sometimes completely above his head. The icing-on-the-cake, so to speak, was again watching the moon rise above the tree line (it’d disappeared from view as we left the pool) and the soft remnants of the sun setting over the horizon, beyond Lawford Heath.
I hope you enjoyed my scribblings and my pix ….