Pepper, a nine year old, Bichon Frise is our first guest dog blogger who has been out on her one of her favourite adventures up to the top of the Malvern Hills. Read Pepper’s account below.
“A favourite walk for my human and I on the Malvern Hills, is the Herefordshire Beacon.
Also, known as British Camp, as it is was once an ancient Iron Age hill-fort and still has the distinctive banks and ditches of the earthwork. Myth has it, that the Ancient British chieftain Caractacus made his last stand at British Camp, whether this is based on fact or not, the landscape still conjures up images of how humans once lived, with hill-forts needed to survive against other tribes and the Roman Empire. My owner likes to tell me stories when we look out over the old Kingdom’s at the top.
To start with, I love the drive from either direction; whether it’s meandering up the winding roads that go up past Little Malvern Court & Priory (a former Benedictine Monastery), or along Peachfield Common and Malvern Wells, or up through the Wyche Cutting. I always love to watch out the front window from the back seat to see the Beacon approaching in the horizon, as we drive along Jubilee Drive.. It’s a bendy road, and if you drive too fast, you’ll miss it! It’s just a glimpse of the hill-fort earthworks in the distance.
I feel exhilarated walking with 650,000 million years of history beneath my feet on my way up, even though my owner keeps me on my lead until we check there aren’t any sheep about. There’s plenty of places to sniff out along the way up. I like to have a rest on the ridge and look towards the Worcestershire Beacon with the many undulating slopes in between us. The rest of the climb also excites me with the earthworks and trenches providing a different view whilst we walk up to the top.
My owner enjoys the variety of incredible views on this walk; towards the reservoir, of British Camp, the peaks of the other ‘Malvern Hills’, Little Malvern Priory and the beautiful countryside around us and into the distance. I love the large open spaces to run and roll on and the banks to charge up and down. There is even a cave to explore, Clutter’s Cave, and it’s also known as Giant’s Cave but I don’t understand why because it is really small. The walk is quite steep in places and there are quite a few steps but it’s suitable for anyone reasonably fit on 2 or 4 legs and it really is worth the effort for the spectacular view at the top.
On the way down, we go a different way back, where I have access to a bit of woodland and scenic paths with lots of other things of interest as we go past the reservoir. I love it, when it twinkles in the sun.
When we come back down we never go straight back to the car. We always cross the road to visit Sally’s Place or the Malvern Hills Hotel. It’s quite a fast road, so we always make sure we cross safely.
Sally’s Place is a little kiosk on the corner of the road selling food, drinks, cakes and a huge variety of ice-creams. I get a refreshing drink of water and sometimes even a doggy biscuit from the staff. My owners are always astonished by the number and variety of ice-creams and sorbets on offer. They always spent ages choosing what they want but thankfully they let me have a taste.
The Malvern Hills Hotel is also across the road serving drinks, snacks and meals. I’m allowed in the hotel bar area (if I’m not too wet or dirty) and there is an eating area outside too with a dog water bowl. It is a rather enjoyable experience for the nose as all the plates of food go past for the humans. It’s a lovely end to a fantastic walk!
Please watch out as there are sometimes sheep along this walk, so please make sure you are a sensible dog or human, and don’t chase or harm them.”
You can find details of a walk to Herefordshire Beacon under the ‘Walks on the Malvern Hills’ section of this website. The walk is called ‘British Camp to Swinyard Hill’, alternatively you can buy a trail map at Malvern Tourist Information Centre for 55p, or download our Walking App.
If you know a dog who would like to be a guest dog blogger, please contact the human Tourism Team via email firstname.lastname@example.org.
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