Saturday, 14 May 2016

London Hikes - Dollis Valley

My Dollis Valley hike starts at West Finchley Tube, however when I walked it, the Tube was not working and I got a bus. Online you will find references to the Dollis Valley Greenland walk - this is part of my trail but starts over near the M1. All my route is recorded by GPS and saved on Strava HERE.  Like most of my hikes this is about 10 miles long.

From the station find your way to Dollis Brook - which runs alongside the Golf Course at the end of Fursby Ave. At the end of the golf course you need to tackle the B1462 for a very short distance - however here is an interesting point on the walk - Dollis Hill Viaduct. Worthy noted as the highest point of the Tube network standing at 18 meters tall.

From here it is easy to follow Dollis Brook as it winds its way alongside a beautiful path laden with trees and other shrubs. I saw herons and a kingfisher on route and only a few other people out for a walk in these parts.

The walk takes you under the A1 and then under the north circular as well - both extremely busy roads and although noisy at these points it is still very rural underneath on the walk. Just before the North Circular the brook divides and goes on to form the Brent. We turn left at this point and follow the stream which is now called Mutton Brook.

When Mutton Brook goes under the A1 we turn right and cross Addison Way and into Little Wood, then we head toward Big Wood - there are a number of routes through here. On exiting Big Wood you are in Hampstead Garden Suburb. It's a beautiful place and if you want to read more please click HERE. In a nutshell it was the invention of a husband and wife team back in 1906 although built for all classes it is really only enjoyed by the wealthy these days. A point of interest here and just of the trail is St Jude's on the hill. From here you are walking over to Hampstead Heath and all the way down it whichever way you think best.

Past the Royal Free Hospital and down Haverstock Hill you will eventually arrive at Primrose Hill with its beautiful views over London.  In my mind one of the best views of the City. You are also close to London Zoo at this point which you walk towards as the last leg of our walk takes us through Regents Park.

Lastly then we take a stroll through Regents Park. When I walked it was May and a warm day - the trees and flowers were in full show and it was very delightful - I think this walk would also be nice in Autumn.  It is also worth noting that from the top of Hamstead Heath it is possible to get a Tube if you want to duck out (Golders Green).  But then again in London you are never far from a Bus either. My walk finishes on the Euston Rd at the exit of Regents Park - I hope you enjoy this walk as I did.