Long Mynd places: Grindle

Walking in a rather aimless fashion on the Long Mynd in August, I found my way to the top of one of the hills on the eastern side of the ridge. Named on the map simply as Grindle, the round summit has excellent views over the Stretton valley and hills.

It was bank holiday weekend and the wider Long Mynd ridge was very busy with walkers, cyclists and even some out-of-control dogs. But few visitors actually venture off the larger footpaths and the publicised walking routes. Up on Grindle I had the hilltop and the panorama to myself.

Grindle is an easy walk from Pole Cottage, where there is a small car park. Following a meandering grassy path from Pole Cottage itself, or a wider one from the car park, you simply head over a ridge (following Ride UK signs) and down a slope to a grassy saddle – the site of an ancient dyke. Grindle is the large round hill ahead. I followed the inviting path around the right as far as a spot where the path passes a couple of trees. From here there is a sketchy path leading uphill.

Heading upwards, following sheep-tracks where necessary, it was an easy climb to reach the wide summit, the highest point marked by a large cairn. On the way up there were a couple of tumuli below, although not particularly large ones. And here I sat in the sun to enjoy the view – until the next rainstorm came, mixed with unseasonal hail.

For the return route to Pole Cottage, instead of climbing over the top of the adjacent ridge, you can take an alternative route around to the right. This contours around the hill, with views down to Ashes Hollow, before rejoining the main path.

There are lots of good circular routes on the Long Mynd, generally going up and down the valleys on the Church Stretton side. Grindle can be combined with one of these. But if you just want a pleasant excursion from the car park, it’s a good panoramic spot to aim for. I visited on a walk using the Shropshire Hills shuttle bus, walking along the ancient Portway from Duckley Nap and afterwards heading off the Long Mynd on a rural footpath (in another rainstorm).