Lark Valley Path: King's Staunch to Isleham Lock

27 May 2013

Today Stephen continued his walk along the River Lark - though the Lark Valley Path ends at Mildenhall, the old towpath continues all the way alongside the river to its confluence with the Great Ouse between Ely and Littleport.

I parked the car in the village of West Row and walked across fields to the river, overtaken on the way by a woman jogging who rather startled me while I was trying to photograph the dogs. Here we reach the river at Kings Staunch and resume the towpath

Heading along the towpath of the River Lark

Jude's Ferry Bridge is the official limit of navigation nowadays (though presumably small boats can get as far as Kings Staunch), and peeping into view under the bridge is our first narrowboat of the River Lark

On a pleasant May afternoon, a few people are having a drink at the pub

George and Lottie are enjoying the walk

This boat has been here some time, and shows up on Google satellite photos

We make a short diversion away from the river at Gravel Gardens, giving us the opportunity to enjoy the bluebells

Back on the riverbank, there is almost a natural tunnel of the vegetation, easy going for the dogs but rather low for humans.

Here the lock cut for Isleham Lock goes off to the right - the right of way along the towpath along the river does continue past those boats on the far side, but there is no way across, so our route lies along the straight lock cut

Heading for Isleham Lock

Above the lock

And below the lock, where Lottie looks downstream perhaps thinking of the next leg of the walk. For now it is time to turn around and return partly along a different route back to the car at West Row

The traditional looking bottom lock gates

...and the modern guillotine top gate. Why the difference, I'm not sure, but it is the same pattern as on the River Nene.

Total 10.5 km in 2 hours 41 mins (making 5.5 km progress along the River Lark)


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Unless otherwise stated, all images copyright (c) Stephen and Lucy Dawson