TODAY is National Take A Hike Day - a day where we're all encouraged to step outside and enjoy the great outdoors - whatever the weather.

It might be a little wet and windy but don't let that discourage you from putting on your walking boots or wellies, raincoat and warm hat and stepping outside.

There are lots of fantastic walks you can enjoy around St Helens where the colours of the autumn season are on display in all their glory.

Why not go for a crisp autumn stroll and blow the cobwebs away today?

Here is a selection of some of the best local autumnal walks:

Blackbrook (Picture: Alex Stringer)

Blackbrook (Picture: Alex Stringer)

Sankey Valley Park through Blackbrook and Haydock

There are several routes through Sankey Valley Park.

The main route starts at Carr Mill Dam taking you through Blackbrook, Haydock, Parr, Earlestown and Newton-le-Willows.

These are well marked with parking at Blackbrook Visitor Centre off Blackbrook Road (A58) and Bradlegh Road, Newton-le-Willows.

Sherdley Park (Picture: Peter Boylan)

Sherdley Park (Picture: Peter Boylan)

Sherdley Park

The park is full of beautiful surroundings with acres of well-kept grassland and wildflower meadows that are perfect for sports activities or just walking the dog.

Why not meander round the lake, ponds and streams or areas of open woodland?

The wide pathways make it a popular destination for cyclists.

Dream (Picture: Mike Dean)

Dream (Picture: Mike Dean)


Dream, which is a lasting tribute to St Helens' mining heritage, was created in 2009 by sculptor Jaume Plensa on the former site of Sutton Manor Colliery.

The structure has been under the spotlight recently after it featured heavily in the Netflix series Stay Close, which was released last year.

Once at the sculpture, you have good views across Cheshire and Lancashire, out to the mountains of Snowdonia, the Pennines, the Peak District and some of Manchester’s landmarks.

Crank Caverns (Picture: Carol Southward)

Crank Caverns (Picture: Carol Southward)

Crank Caverns

The network of tunnels and caverns as well as extensive woodland is the perfect destination for an autumnal walk.

The caverns have been the subject of intriguing and disturbing legends over the years, from stories of hiding places in the 16th Century Reformation to tales of the vicious dwarves rumoured to have inhabited the caverns in the late 18th Century.

Lyme and Wood Country Park (Picture: Stephen Hovvels)

Lyme and Wood Country Park (Picture: Stephen Hovvels)

Lyme and Wood Country Park

Lyme & Wood Country Park, located between Earlestown and Haydock, consists of 274 acres with 180,000 trees planted.

The country park was originally two coal mines, and their legacy remains as both Wood Pit Colliery and Lyme Colliery mines were the inspiration for the park’s name.

The landfill was completed in 2019 and since then, volunteers have been contributing to the site’s developments to achieve a biodiversity park for a greener area.

Carr Mill Dam (Picture Dave Parry)

Carr Mill Dam (Picture Dave Parry)

Carr Mill Dam

Carr Mill Dam is the county's largest body of inland water and offers picturesque lakeside trails and walks.

There’s a 2.9km loop trail which is considered an easy route and takes just under an hour to complete.

This is a very popular area for birding, hiking and mountain biking and is open all year round.