The Dollis Valley Walk near Barnet –
A weekend dog walking I can definitely recommend
I woke to gorgeous sunshine one-day last week, and the thought immediately came into my head to take my two dogs (Missy and Roxy) out on a totally different walking route. As a professional dog walker, I walk my customers’ dogs around many different locations, usually close to their homes, but I was feeling more adventurous, so packed y day sack with drinks for both me and my dogs, along with some f snacks and off we set – with Google map in hand. (although I had dome the walk before)
The Dollis Valley Green Walk
One of the many open green spaces and parks in the London Borough of Barnet, this route of around 5.6 miles (9 kms) follows the course of the Dollis Brook, hence its name, and passes through wonderful wildlife locations, wooded areas and green spaces along its way. The route I took commenced in Finchley at Woodside Park, meandered along the Dollis Valley ending at Edgeware, where we hopped on a 221 bus to return home, although Edgeware Station is very near too. The Dolli’s route actually begins at the River Brent, some 5 miles further from where I joined, where you can get an amazing view of the Mill Hill Viaduct. (a walk for another day)
The Dollis Brook
Forming an important ecological valley through Barnet and creating habitats for many creatures and plants. On our route we spotted a kingfisher, although there are herons in the area too. The name “Dollis” is derived from the word “dylif meaning a flood. Some parts of the Brook Walk are very quiet and secluded and there were parts of the walk where we came upon no other ramblers, which was brilliant for the dogs as they sniffed about in the undergrowth, hoping to spot a rabbit. In parts, the Dollis Brook becomes rather boggy, so make sure you wear suitable footwear.
Beginning our walk at Woodside Park, we followed the signposts that show a green disc with a white arrow pointing our direction along Totteridge Lane towards Brook Farm Open Space, following the bends in the path. Another mile or so along here we encountered Barnet Playing Fields following the tarmac path, where the dogs had a good gallop around.
You will need your wits about you here, as there is a busy road to cross, so put your dogs on the lead for safety. At the edge of Barnet, we crossed over to the south side of Dollis Brook over a bridge and continued following the stream through several kissing gates and fields. These fields contain farm animals, so make sure you stick to the beaten pathways, and of course, keep your dog on a lead if any live stock is present.
We followed on through between the hay fields that have now been harvested and the old hedgerows, then crossed the footbridge using the steps over the A41. My route continued by Highview Gardens, into Hale Lane following a short footpath to Penshurst Gardens. My destination here was Edgeware, a welcome drink and refreshment stop for the dogs, and then directly to the bus stop for our return journey home.
The Country Code
If you decide to take an amble with your dogs along the Dollis Green Walk, remember to keep your pets under your control at all times. Make sure they’re microchipped and wear an ID tag and a collar, in case they do slip away from you and get lost. Always respect the countryside, and follow the Country Code:
- Always plan your route, follow any signs and stay safe
- Always take your litter home, to protect animals and plants
- Always leave any property and gates as you find the
- Always keep your dog under control and clean up and dog mess
- Be considerate to other ramblers and dog walkers