Cotherstone trek is a muddy marvel
For this week’s walk, Kirsty Brien, a member of the outdoor team at the TCR Hub, starts and finishes in Cotherstone, taking in a bridge high over the River Balder to follow it downstream to its confluence with the Tees. This is a great walk, with a few challenging muddy bits, that makes a great trail run too.
Cotherstone and the River Balder
Walk length: 5km
Approximate walk time: 1hour 15mins
Run Time: 35mins
1. Start at the pretty village church of St Cuthbert’s and, with your back to the church, cross over the road and turn left. Very shortly follow the public footpath sign that takes you in front of the cottages, through two gates and into an open field.
Once across the field you will reach another gate, turn right onto the old railway line.
2. Follow the old railway line (for 1.9km- about half an hour) through beautiful rolling countryside. There are lots of gates and one small road to cross at West Park.
3. The track then crosses high above the River Balder. Just beyond the end of the viaduct, turn right and follow the public footpath across the field and then along the top of the wooded riverbank.
4. The path follows around the edge of the Doe Park Caravan Site and then negotiates the wooden steps diagonally down across a field to meet the road at Balder Bridge.
5. Go through the small wooden gate and turn right over the bridge (take care – there is no path).
Look out for the footpath sign and gap in the stone wall on the opposite side, cross over and through the wall.
6. Follow the path through the woods and onto a muddy track to the right of a house and a wall of tall trees. You will shortly come out onto a small lane, head left and down towards the river (the remains of Cotherstone castle are up on the right).
7. At a path junction at the confluence of the Balder and the Tees, do not cross the river but stay on the Cotherstone side of the Tees and follow the footpath for 400m (about 5-7mins). Keep an eye out for the public footpath on your right and follow this back through fields into the village.
Stay local – if this walk is not local to you, please save it for when restrictions are lifted.
Give other walkers plenty of room at gates, narrow path sections, bridges etc.
Take a map as well as the walk notes and appropriate kit and food/ drink for the weather.
Walk length: 5km. Approximate walk time: 1.15 hours.