Sunday Walk: Froghall Wharf & Harston Woods

This week’s walk was around Froghall Wharf  which is in the Churnet Valley, at the end of the Caldon Canal. It wasn’t so much the canal and wharf we were interested in, but the surrounding woodlands. The wharf itself was busy at 11am, not surprising since it’s a pretty spot with picnic tables, two parking areas, and toilet facilities, plus Hetty’s Tea Shop (which we didn’t sample).

Looking down on Hartson WoodsI liked the look of the circular walk up and around the wharf, and we weren’t disappointed. Crossing the canal, we went up the valley past ancient iron ore workings. ‘Look for conical depressions’ Dez read out from the map, and Liam warped that into ‘chronical depression’… so questions #5 and 6 of the day were all about depression. There were a lot of questions today.

We missed the right turn down to the little lake, but after backtracking we found it (no signs!) and went down past the lake then back up onto a ridge and a beautiful woodland glad.

Another small bridge took us up to farmland, where we followed the fence and hit the track which lead to the main road down from Foxt. Passing a dead sheep fired up more questions, and it wasn’t long before even my patience faded, and I told Dez the next 10 questions were all hers.

We curtained the official route by taking the track down next to New Cottages which lead through Harston woods down to the old railway track, and on back to the car park.


  • 1hr 20 minutes
  • 2.75 miles
  • Climb about 400 feet



  • There are 3 ‘marked’ routes around the area. We were mostly on the green, but markers were a bit sparce so look for the yellow lapwing markers.
  • Get there early, the car parks fill up quickly.
  • Avoid dead sheep

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