Lime Grove Footpath
Some good news is that the chequered history of the Lime Grove footpath, referred to in Part 1 Walk 1 para 7, may now be forgotten for the present. The surface of the stretch near to Totteridge Common has compacted and its slight elevation means that it is reasonably dry after recent heavy rain. The lower section towards the Totteridge Academy is muddy but not excessively so.
Darlands Nature Reserve
The Darlands Nature Reserve Trust is almost ready to begin its fund-raising phase and will then be setting up a management plan for the reserve. Presently, the footpaths are in much the same state as in previous years, that is, requiring at least walking boots to keep the feet dry and to help prevent the rambler from slipping over on the uneven, muddy footpaths.
The routes in this area are detailed in Part 2 Walk 6. It is very strange for the frequent walker in this area to leave the enclosed footpath, as in para 3, and not see the green roof of the National Institute of Medical Research on the horizon, as in Fig.2. This has been demolished and a modern version is promised in its place, maybe even with a green roof, but with flats/apartments in the new building.
Entry to the Nature Reserve is most easily made by taking the second, quite narrow, footpath on the right as it is usually a lot less wet and muddy, (paras 3 and 4 and point (2) on sketch map). The rest of the 2-miles walk is as per the booklet but, already, much of the footpath has some very slippery, muddy stretches.
The lake itself is clear of bulrushes and floating plants as can be seen from the photo taken on Sunday 16th December 2018.
2-Miles Circular Walk from Ridge Village
The changes to the account in Part 2 Walk 5 (iii) are noted in the earlier update of 26 October 2015. There were some areas of surface water along the route described in paras 1 and 2 of the booklet so wellies may be the best footwear after further heavy rain.
The path from the corner of Bigpursley Wood across the field to Catherine Bourne (para 4) has several stretches of water and sticky mud, as can be seen from the photo taken on Wednesday 19th December 2018.
The recently opened bridleway along the side of the hedge now provides a straightforward route to Mimms Lane for winter walkers anxious to avoid the boot-sucking mud in the large field.
Hadley Common and Woods
This ever-popular route for local walkers looking for readily accessible countryside is presently relatively free of significantly sticky, slippery mud. It is described in Part 2 Walk 7 paras 2 and 3. The last part of the walk in the woodland area before emerging onto Bakers Hill near the railway line can be a bit tricky after prolonged rain but, at present (December 20th 2018), walking boots should be fine.