This offers opportunities to see steam trains,
brave souls jumping from planes, and do a bit of bird watching.
Start point: Park beside the road in Yarwell village, then head to Yarwell Mill. Walk in through the entrance, and around the main yard towards the river. With the old mill building to your left, bear right, crossing the waterway. With the little café to your right, keep ahead, again crossing the river. The footpath is well marked.
You will walk to the left of a field, with trees to your left. Bear left over a bridge then keep ahead. If you want to check out the steam trains operated by Nene Valley Railway, turn left at the crossroads. You’ll be walking on a neat, wide, grassy path to a gate. Pass through the gate and you’ll come to the Yarwell Junction Station. If you wish, you can hop on board and take a train ride – tickets may be bought on board.
Just in front of the station are information boards and maps, showing the route of the railway, together with footpath routes, including the Nene Way. To ensure you see a train – and to plan a trip on from here, check out the timetable at www.nvr.org.uk.
As this is the final stop for the railway, you’ll be able to watch the locomotive run round the train, ready to haul carriages back through Wansford and on to the Nene Park then on to Peterborough.
Retrace your steps through the gate and along the grassy path to the crossroads. Turn left, then continue ahead. You might just catch a glimpse of a small lake through the trees to your left. Ahead in the distance is Sibson Airfield. There’s a flying school based there, along with Sibson Sky Divers, and planes take off with parachutists who will land in the fields ahead.
Continue straight until you come to a signed wide track to the right. Turn up here, and walk straight for about 3/4 mile, with views down to Yarwell in the distance on your right.
When you reach a T-junction of paths, turn right, and after a short while, keep right at the sign. The path will start to run parallel to a quiet stretch of the River Nene. Look out for swans, geese, and even cormorant. The path reaches a weir. To the right you’ll see the path as it slopes up to join the route of the disused railway. Follow it for about 1/2 a mile. Look out for footpath signs to the left and follow the wide path through a field to the trees ahead.
Turn right at the trees, where once again you will be walking parallel to the river. The path continues until you re-join the track that you set out on. Turn left, cross the river bridge, then bear right with the trees on your right and you’ll soon find yourself back at Yarwell Mill Country Park.
Enjoy refreshments at the Riverside Café, including lunch or afternoon tea, cakes, and ice creams. It is open daily from 9.30am to 3pm.
Watch boats pass through the lock gates, and watch – or even have a go at – kayaking or stand-up paddle boarding if Adventure Rutland are in-situ that day.