Burntstump Country Park – Hikes near Nottingham

Burntstump Country Park – Hikes near Nottingham

Whenever Marc and I go home to visit his parents in Nottingham, we always get to take the lovely Elsa (his family’s English Setter) for walkies. We’ve been to Burntstump Country Park a few times now because it is great as an off-lead dog walk in Nottingham. It is also full of squirrels (which is great for providing extra puppy-joy to Elsa.)

When we went home at Christmas we both needed a longer leg-stretch after being cooped up in airplanes/cars/trains for the previous few days. Armed with a map, we kept walking beyond Burntstump Country Park in the general direction of Marc’s home. We planned to walk the whole way home, or at least to a good local pub. The route we found was really fun, so I thought I should share it.

Burntstump Country Park to Woodborough Map

I only remembered to turn on the All Trails app after we’d wandered around Burntstump Country Park for a while, but the map above gives you the general idea of our walk.

Burntstump Country Park to Woodborough – the basics

Distance: 13km 
Elevation Gain: 
High Point: 
Time: 3-3.5 hours
What to bring:
We didn’t have anything special for this, but wellies would have been useful for the muddy fields. 
Dogs: Yes! Good dogs are allowed to be off-lead within Burntstump Country Park. After that we kept going without the dog, but she would have been fine on a lead.
How hard is it? Maybe Intermediate as we had to make up our own route. But the paths were not hard at all.

Burntstump Country Park

This part of the walk is basically puppy paradise. There are a few mini loop walks around the top of the park, and then lower down within the forest. We tend to visit when the weather is very soggy, as the park doesn’t normally turn into too much of a muddy mess.

This park is very popular with dog walkers, so your dog will have plenty of chances to smell the local pee-mail. Pee-mail is what my sister calls the mini toilets stops do to let other dogs know they have visited.

In December the park was also good fun for photos. We found quite a few mushrooms and although the trees didn’t have any leaves, but the park was still pretty bathed in winter light.

Elsa (and Marc’s parents) continued with their walk around Burntstump Country Park, while Marc and I made-up the rest of our longer walk…

Sansom Wood

Across the road from Burntstump Country Park is a huge area of forest that is full of possible pathways. When we visited, we didn’t see a single other walker in Sansom Wood. It might be good for shy dogs/walkers that fancy meeting up with fewer doggos.

This area was also not very waterlogged or muddy, despite all the recent rain.

Although we didn’t see other people, I kept spotting faces in the trees!

Part of Sansom Wood was covered in wilted ferns. The whole area must look incredibly lush and green during the summertime when these are all alive.

Once we’d left the wood, there was a footpath along the edge of the fields, that crossed the road A614. Be really careful when you cross the road. It seemed like most drivers didn’t expect pedestrians to cross here, so they were really zooming past!

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Watchwood plantation

As soon as you cross the road you can march straight into another woodland. There was a sign from the Forestry Commission, so it must be public-owned land. This would be a good place to walk dogs too!

There were good walking surfaces with plenty of drainage, and a huge range of paths, with many possible loops. This area seems like it is popular for mountain bikers (they have a whole bunch of fun-looking trails.)

On Christmas Eve, there was no logging activity, but we could see that this woodland is managed for logging. If you are here on a day when they are felling trees, be careful to keep out of the way of their vehicles!

There are a few small hills within the Watchwood plantation, so we got a few peeks at the surrounding countryside as we explored.

The only tough part was what appeared to be a path on our map, but that turned out to be overgrown with spiky brambles! I got caught in the bushes many times on this teeny section!

Bean Ford

I always love fords. If my parents ever gave us the choice of taking a route via a ford when we were kids, we’d always choose the watery option! Luckily the ford on Beanford Road has a small footbridge, so walkers don’t have to get their feet soggy.

The Nottingham countryside is really pleasant and pretty green (if muddy) in wintertime.

Across the fields

We walked on footpaths through the muddy fields.


We found a small road along the back of the village of Calverton. There were quite a few horses around who watched us wander along.

The last few fields were incredibly soggy. We both had to waddle along the trail, trying to keep our feet either side of the stream-like path. I discovered that my shoes had a leak (noooo). I’ve only used those shoes for a few months, so I don’t recommend Merrell trail shoes!

This is the pathway, once it was a bit easier and less wet. Still the puddles were enormous!

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Springwater Golf Club

There is a footpath straight up the hill in the Springwater golf course. There were no golfers out, as the sun was starting to set on Christmas eve. Once you’re at the top of the golf course, you can take another straight path back down the hill to the outskirts of the village of Woodborough.

Woodborough pub – Four Bells Inn

We were both a little cold by the time we reached Woodborough, so we stopped off for a drink, and called Marc’s dad to come and collect us. If you are ever in Nottingham, this pub was really lovely. There was a roaring fire as well as a huge selection of gins.

I loved their doggy bars too!

Marc chose a tasty stout, and I went for a gin that turned out to be really Christmassy. I think it was called Opihr.

Now we are getting used to the epic mountain-filled hikes in Canada, it is really nice to come back and walk in the UK. England is choc-a-bloc with pedestrian routes and footpaths. I love that you can plan a countryside walk to almost anywhere, just looking out for the local paths. Plus, you don’t need to worry about bears. 😉

Burntstump Country Park - Great for Dog Walks near Nottingham Walking in the English Countryside near Nottingham Burntstump Country Park to Woodborough - Dog walks near Nottingham

62 thoughts on “Burntstump Country Park – Hikes near Nottingham

    1. Thank you! I normally like seeing all the greenery in spring, but you are right, the winter brown colours were pretty to explore too.

    1. Oooh thanks. 😀
      I was really dappy and left my camera batteries in Canada (nooo!) so these photos were taken with my phone. I sometimes brighten photos slightly and then re-size them for my blog (I use Affinity, like photoshop, but cheaper 😉 )

  1. This post made me so homesick for the British Isles. It looks like you had an absolutely beautiful ramble through the countryside. I also love that you ended at a pub – perfect way to end in my opinion. 😉

    1. Wait that is sooooo close! This time we were spending all our time with babies, but next time we come home, maybe we can go for an adventure in the peaks together! For some reason I thought you were further out towards the coast!

  2. I love the idea of finding walking paths wherever we go. It seems that this won’t catch on in the US as landowners seem very protective of their property. Your photos are so beautiful – even the!

      1. Thank you! I really loved those puddles because at least we could walk around them! It was the soggy trail with no puddles that made my feet really wet!

  3. You are so adventurous Josy. You both are always in a fun walk. It’s nice that you’re able to call your dad in law to pick you up when its needed. The drinks looks good.

    1. YES! Marc’s dad picking us up meant we could stop and drink. I think we were still more than an hours walk away from his home, so that really helped!

  4. I love this! Surprisingly it’s 100 spot on of what I would think Nottingham and that part of England would look like and I couldn’t be more happy. It reminds me so much of Robin Hood!

    1. You know, if you and Jo ever visit the UK, you should try to come in late April/ early May when the bluebells are in bloom. The walks around Nottingham then are stunning! You can just imagine Robin Hood whizzing through the trees.

  5. What a beautiful park to have close by your relatives! Elsa is so cute and “pee-mail” just cracked me up, I’ll have to start using that one!

  6. This looks really nice! You got some great shots, and I’m loving the faces you found on the trail. Also, to be honest I didn’t know what a ford was, so thanks for increasing my vocabulary today 🙂 The pub you found also looks so cozy, especially after a hike!

    1. Oooh do you not really have fords on country roads in the States? I guess now you mention it, I don’t think I’ve ever seen a ford in Canada either…

  7. You nailed it with your comment about being able to make up almost any walk you can think of – I do miss that, as well as a good pub at the end of every walk!

    But – yikes – those puddles! You need waders to get through them! 😁

    1. Those puddles look huge, but they were actually much better than the previous soggy path, at least we could walk around them!

  8. This looks like a fun walk! And Elsa just looks adorable. I haven’t been to Nottingham in over 15 years, but this makes me want to return there so I can explore the country park myself.

  9. What beautiful countryside — I am jealous! It is really nice that the park allows you to walk dogs off lead, I wish there were more walks available to us here that allow that. It’s neat that you found so many different types of mushrooms along the walk. It sounds like finishing your walk at the Woodborough pub was a nice way to end the day.

    1. Thanks Summer, yeah, finishing at a pub is always great in the UK!

      There are quite a few good off-lead walks, but you always have to be a bit careful if there are roads nearby… Do you have any good dog walking spots near you?

  10. That is quite the hike! I am not sure I would make it all the way through, but I love your photos and that you can take dogs on the trail! Great post!

    1. You might manage this one (the gin and tonic makes a fab reward!) 😀 If not, even just the park at the start of the walk was a great spot to get outside.

    1. Thanks Meghan! I have a feeling you would love the countryside here. You could finish with a tea room instead of a pub. 🙂

  11. You’re making me miss England. I love a country walk… followed by a drink at a country pub! Thre faces in the trees are really interesting, it’s like finding shapes in clouds

    1. I do love finding faces in clouds too!

      You know, if you ever fancy a good post-hike pub near(ish) Vancouver, the Pony in Pemberton is really good. It’s like a Canadian version of an English boozer, with fab food. It’s just you have to find hikes near Pemberton first… 😉

  12. When I lived in south London I used to love walking up to Tooting Bec Common or Wimbledon Common and wandering around. Sometimes I’d take a book to sit in the quiet and read, and other times I’d just be there to check out everyone’s puppies. Burntstump looks like a great place to do both of those things!

    1. Oooh I love that area, especially Wimbledon common! Did you ever do the Capital Ring walk around London. We did it in winter, so it was similarly brown to this post, and sooo full of doggos!

  13. Oh that looks like a lovely place for a walk and a great way to stretch your legs after a long flight. A walk can’t get any better when it ends at such an adorable pub!

    1. Thanks Vanessa, yeees, finishing at pubs is the best! Especially in winter when they have a cozy fireplace to help you warm up!

  14. The hikes and trails look so peaceful here. I would love to some day walk and photograph this amazing scenery. Thanks for sharing this location, I didn’t know about it before reading this post!

    1. Thanks Steph! Don’t worry, I doubt many people have heard of it, it is a pretty rural area. You’re right though, it was super peaceful.

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