This walk from Haltwhistle to Featherstone and Lambley Viaduct was planned back in April. It was a lovely day then too. We could tell early on that this was going to be a good walk.
After we had all found parking spaces, we met up at Haltwhistle Station. The sun was out, the sky was clear and it was beginning to warm up a little. Everyone was looking forward to seeing the sights advertised in the write up for real. So, a warm up and off we went.
The first little bit is through the town and out towards Wydon Farm. We made our way along West Road and Wydon Lane. This took us out under the A69 and towards Wydon. The sound of the road began to disappear as we went on and the surrounding area became much more rural.
Wydon and Wydon Eals
Wydon is simply a few farm houses and buildings. Surprisingly, we met several people heading in the same direction. After chatting with them we discovered that they were on the way over the moor to a nearby village.
We crossed a few fields and then followed a path through some woods and down towards Wydon Eals. This was the first highlight of the walk. It is a wide flood plane for the South Tyne and looks like an oasis in the bleak moorland that is usual in this part of Northumberland.
From Wydon Eals, it is a short walk along a farm track to Featherstone Bridge. Here we met a couple who asked us if we had any binoculars. We did have binoculars, but asked why they needed them. They said that there was a peculiar bird sitting on a rock by the bank of the river. We took a look and thought it might be a guillemot. The couple were a little disappointed, as these birds are very common. Two of our party went a little closer to confirm it. Nevermind, we might spot a rare bird one day.
Leaving Featherstone Bridge we walked along the road to the riverbank adjacent to Featherstone Castle. This is the prettiest part of the walk and it is a pleasure to walk here. The river is wide here and is a great place to see bird life. There were more guillemots, some herons and, in the distance, a buzzard.
Further on, we passed the remains of an old WW2 POW camp. If you didn’t know what it was you’d think it was farm buildings, as that’s what they are used for today. There is however a plaque on a stone-built column that explains everything.
The path follows the riverbank for about a mile and views are constant. So, we thought it best to make sure we had lunch here. The chosen spot is a short distance from Lambley Viaduct and it had everything required for a lunch stop, soft grass, sun and a view.
Reluctantly, we had to leave our idyllic spot and continue onto the next leg of the walk. It was only a short walk, across some more fields, to the next highlight, Lambley Viaduct.
The viaduct isn’t visible until you are almost upon it. This is surprising considering its size. We spent a bit of time beneath it, partly to rest before climbing to the top but mostly to admire its grandeur from below.
There were families enjoying a barbecue on the little pebble beach under the bridge, but we had to cross the narrow footbridge to the steps on the other side. The steps were a case of see you at the top and and go at your own pace. In the end they looked worse than they were.
The viaduct is not only an amazing feat of engineering, it is an amazing viewpoint to see the river valley and the route we had just taken.
We had to rest at the top of course but, as this was a railway line, it was easy going form here. So, off we went at a nice easy pace, enjoying the sunshine.
We had mentioned earlier that we were passing a pub (The Wallace Arms) on the way back. As we got there we asked if anyone wanted to enjoy some refreshments and the vote was a unanimous and enthusiastic yes.
Back to Haltwhistle
Suitably lubricated, we set off for the last part of the walk. This was just a straight path back to Haltwhistle, or it would be if the A69 wasn’t in the way. We took great care to cross this road, as it’s a fast road. Luckily, we all made it and managed to reach the next viaduct. This is the one that everyone sees as they bypass Haltwhistle.
Soon we were back at Haltwhistle Station and looking for a tearoom that was still open. Unfortunately, they were all closed. So, we had to settle for the Black Bull. Shame.
Good to see you all on this one and look forward to seeing you again soon.
Julie and Martin x
If you liked the Haltwhistle, Featherstone and Lambley Viaduct walk why not take a look at our other walks.
Gallery – Haltwhistle, Featherstone and Lambley Viaduct
Strolls with poles – Nordic Walking for Fun and Fitness