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|Frampton Marsh Wash Trail|
|Author: lslborrill, Published: 23 Mar 2017||Walk Rating:|
|IMPORTANT NOTE: Dogs are NOT permitted on this trail as it follows paths within a private RSPB reserve. |
A 4km (2.5 mile) circular walk around the sea wall and hides at the RSPB Frampton Marsh reserve near Boston in Lincolnshire. This circular trail ascends onto the sea wall, with great views over one of the world’s largest saltmarshes, as well as wet grassland and freshwater scrapes. There are plenty of birds and wildlife to see at RSPB Frampton Marsh, varying throughout the seasons. If required, volunteers and staff are available on site to help both those new to, and experienced at, bird watching. Alternatively, you can explore by yourself and enjoy the relaxing natural environment. Families are welcome at RSPB Frampton Marsh, with kids activity backpacks and pond dipping nets available to hire, and the ‘Kids Zone’ in the 360 hide with colouring sheets and ‘Be a Warden’ board game.
Entry to the reserve is free, although you can make a voluntary donation. The trail begins and ends using compacted aggregate paths and there is a short section on a restricted use single-track road. These sections are generally flat. The sea wall path is grassed and so is uneven with undulations. The entire trail can become muddy when wet. The wash trail sea wall is accessed via either 16 steps or a sloped ramp path. When descending from the sea wall to the East Hide, there are 20 steps (with no slope alternative). There are two gates on the trail. The first has a latch and the second is a freely swinging gate. Dogs are NOT permitted on this wash trail, or in the hides. Allow 1.5 hours.
The visitor centre sells hot and cold drinks, and cold snacks. There are picnic tables next to the visitor centre and several benches around the trail.
RSPB Frampton Marsh is signposted from the A16 between Boston and Kirton. Car parking is signposted once you have entered the reserve. Approximate post code PE20 1AY. National Cycle Route 1 is about 2.5km from the reserve entrance. Boston is the nearest train station, about 4 miles (6.4 km) away. The nearest bus stop is in Kirton village, about 3 miles (5 km) from the reserve entrance. The 113 Brylaine bus and the 58 Kimes bus run from Boston through Kirton on weekdays and Saturdays. There are no buses on Sundays. From the centre of Kirton, take Station Road towards the A16. Cross over the A16 and take Horseshoe Lane towards Frampton. Follow this road through the village of Frampton and beyond for approximately 2.8 miles (4.5 km) until you reach the visitor centre. The reserve is also served by the 'Call Connect' on demand bus service from Boston. This operates 7am-7pm weekdays, 8am-6pm Saturday. For more details call 0845 2343344 or visit lincsinterconnect.com. The Macmillan Way long-distance footpath (starting in Boston) crosses the reserve.
|Start to Sea Wall|
Start point: 52.9314 lat, 0.0188 long
With the Visitor Centre behind you, and facing the car park, turn left to follow a compacted aggregate path. On your left there will be the reedbed, and on your right the single-track road. After passing the sign and gate for the 360 hide, continue ahead up a short, moderately steep incline towards the wash. The path then joins the access road coming to the car park, so take care of occasional traffic. Along the road on your left there is firstly freshwater scrapes and then secondly wet grassland. Once you have passed the car parking area on your right, continue forward onto the gravel path between the low fence and the post. At the end of this path you will come the bottom of the sea wall.
|Sea Wall to Gate Down for Hide|
Start point: 52.9251 lat, 0.0292 long
Access to the sea wall is either by means of 16 steps or by means of a sloped ramp path on your right. Take either option. Once on the top of the sea wall turn left to go through the gate. On your left, there will be the wet grassland, which was on your left in the previous section. You will also be able to see the three hides which you will visit later on this trail – East Hide, Reedbed Hide and 360 Hide. On your right, there is one of the world’s largest saltmarshes. The path on the top of the sea wall is grassed, so uneven in places. Stay on the sea wall until you reach the gate and signs for the visitor centre and hides.
|Gate Down for Hide to East Hide|
Start point: 52.9323 lat, 0.0326 long
Go through the latched gate to descend from the sea wall. There are 20 steps in total. Follow the compacted aggregate path to the right. Turn left after the wooden fence to take the path flanked by water. At the end of this path, you will reach the East Hide. Inside the East Hide, there are a number of display boards hanging from the centre of the roof, highlighting the different types of ducks and waders that can be seen from this hide.
|East Hide to Visitor Centre Junction|
Start point: 52.9309 lat, 0.0301 long
Once you have finished inside the hide, head back along the path flanked with water to the wooden bridge at the bottom of the steps. Turn left at the junction, to keep on the lower path. On your left will be the freshwater scrapes. On your right side there will be grassland, both inside and outside the reserve.
|Visitor Centre Junction to 360 Hide|
Start point: 52.9331 lat, 0.0248 long
At the visitor centre junction (indicated with a wooden signpost) turn left. This direction, is signed to reach the visitor centre in 800m. (Continuing straight would take you back to the visitor centre via a longer route, part of the reedbed trail).
|360 Hide to T-junction|
Start point: 52.93 lat, 0.0251 long
Once you have finished in the 360 hide, follow the branch path back to the main path. Turn left to continue along the main path; the freshwater scrapes will be on your left. On your right, there will be the reedbed. You will pass the ‘reflector’ sculpture made from wood and metal, funded and installed by the Arts Council England through the Transported Arts project.
|T-junction to End|
Start point: 52.9296 lat, 0.0214 long
At the end of the path go through the gate and turn right at the T-junction. Once you have turned, on your right will be the reedbed, and your left will be the access road and, beyond this, open fields. You will be able to see the visitor centre ahead, which marks the end of this trail.
Text and images for this walk are Copyright © 2017 by the author lslborrill and may not be reproduced without permission.
The information in this guide has been provided in good faith and is intended only as a guide, not a statement of fact. You are advised to check the accuracy of the information provided and should not use this guide for navigational directions nor should you rely on the accuracy of the weather forecast. You are advised to take appropriate clothing, footwear, equipment and navigational materials with you according to the current and possible weather and nature of the terrain. Always follow the country code and follow any additional warnings or instructions that may be available. Some walks may be very strenuous and you are advised to seek medical advice if you have any doubts as to your capability to complete the walk.
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