The location they chose for their evening stroll was the Hamsterley Forest which lay about 15 miles from their home in Newton Aycliffe. It covers more than 2000 miles, which makes it the largest forest in Durham. It is also chosen as Area Of Outstanding Natural Beauty, which represents those preserved areas that are smaller than national parks but equally important.
The trio had never been to Hamsterley Forest before but they were not anxious because the forest had many trails for cycling, horse riding and hiking to make exploring accessible for visitors. After speculating for some time, the group of friends settled on marking a five miles circle which would bring them back to where they started the hike.
Starting The Trail
The trio began their stroll with a burst of energy. The fall leaves carpeted the trail, their shoes crushing them with each step. The sun was peeking from behind the clouds and the chilly breeze made Jess relieved that she brought her sweater. The trail was beautiful, no doubt. Jess was already ready to plan another stroll here.
Time wore off as they wandered through the forest. Eventually, when the sun looked like it is beginning to set, the group realized they have been walking continuously and wandered off much further than they intended to. Kieran recommended they pick up their pace if they want to reach back before the sun goes down.
It had now been roughly two hours since they started their walk, and it was starting to bother them how much time it is taking to finish it. Plus their remote location in the woods meant there is no cell reception to check the distance. They were just walking endlessly on this trail and had no idea where they are or where they are headed.
The evening was now wearing off and darkness was descending around them. The speckled shade of the trees seemed so inviting all those moments ago. Now the air was just filled with an eerie silence, except for the echoing sound of their feet on the damp ground. Feeling tired was not an option, they had to keep going.