Walking Matters

Godalming & Haslemere Ramblers

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Bramley circular

It was a cold day but there was no rain, no ice and little mud on our 4½ mile walk this morning. We (20) met in Bramley near the old railway station by the joint Wey South Path and Downs Link. The walk was shorter than usual so we would arrive back in time for our Christmas lunch booked in the Bramley Café.

The route was south on a bridleway to the Greensand Way, east on that, over the Downs Link, left on Long Common, back onto the Downs Link and along this to Bramley.

One of the walkers (no spring chicken) struggled up the hill at the start and had to stop several times. She thought that she would be OK once she was on the level. Rather than put this to the test, two went back with her and the three had a pleasant walk along the flat Downs Link. It’s better not to discover that someone could complete a walk than to discover that they could not.

Presumption is the opposite of prevention.

Map: OS X 145


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Puttenham & Crooksbury Hill

Twenty-two turned up for today’s nine mile walk undeterred by the weather. After storms on Sunday, heavy rain on Monday and icy conditions yesterday, the light rain of today was pleasant in comparison. All were keen to get outside and walk. Soft mud was preferable to hard slippery surfaces. Today’s temperature of 7°C felt warm after that of −5°C yesterday.

We met in the upper car park by Puttenham Common, headed north to the join the North Downs Way, turned west and followed it to Sands Road by Farnham golf course. Here we turned left, then right at the next road and took a bridleway on the left that went round Crooksbury Hill. We crossed a lane, continued on a bridleway by Stone Hill, turned right on another one and continued to Charleshill where we stopped at The Donkey pub for lunch. The service was quick and the food was good.

Refreshed, and drier, we set off again and headed east on bridleways past Fullbrook Farm, Gatwick and Rodsall Manor. There was brief sunshine as we entered the car park.

Map: OS X 145

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Witley figure of 8

Eighteen turned up for the walk much to the surprise of the leader. She said that she expected about three. The other walk today, from Puttenham, ended with a Christmas lunch.

We set off for the morning five mile walk from the car park on Church Lane in Witley, crossed the A283, headed for Great Enton, turned left on Water Lane, took a bridleway east to Horsehatches, crossed Hambledon Road and then turned right on a footpath to Hydon’s Ball where we stopped for coffee and ate mince pies provided by our leader.

From HB we headed downhill SW to Hambledon, joined the Greensand Way, turned north on Hambledon Common, passed Sweetwater Pond and returned to Witley.

The three mile afternoon walk went west to Brook.

Paths were remarkably dry. Many were covered with crisp leaves.

Map: OS X 133

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Sidney Wood circular

Seventeen turned up for this morning’s 5½ mile walk undeterred by the weather and the terrain. It was a cool, grey, damp day and the route was likely to be muddy. However, there was less mud than expected and that which we encountered was fairly firm.

We met in the car park off Alford Road in Sidney Wood and headed south to join the Wey South Path. At the junction with the Sussex Border Path the lock, Gennetts lock, is being restored by volunteers from the Wey & Arun Canal Trust. Work was in progress today. One of the men (as previously arranged with our leader) gave us a short talk about the project.

From here we headed west on the SBP, turned right by Lee House Farm, rejoined the WSP and continued north back to the car park.

Map: OS X 134

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Busbridge Lakes bridleway 163

This bridleway was closed two years ago. It is now open to pedestrians and cyclists. A notice has been pinned to both ends: Bridleway open to pedestrians and cyclists. Until further work is carried out it remains closed to equestrian traffic.

However, as the council has removed the barriers which prevented only horses from passing, hoof prints show that horse riders have used it.

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Puttenham Commons & the Hampton Estate

We had a good 5½ mile walk. It was a cold, sunny morning. Most paths were dry and those with mud were not a problem. There were great views on the open sections. Our leader brought two tins of freshly baked flapjacks (still warm) for us to eat at coffee time.

The walk was based on Walk 5 of Farnham Ramblers’ collection of leaflets.

We (18) met at the car park by The Tarn next to Lower Puttenham Common and set off north round The Tarn to join a bridleway that took us past General’s Pond and reached the North Downs Way at Tolford Hatch. Here we turned west on the NDW, crossed a lane and then turned south on a permissive path by the edge of a field in the Hampton Estate. Reaching Littleworth Road we continued south on a footpath by Culverswell Hill, crossed Seale Road, headed NE on a footpath through Britty Wood, crossed Littleworth Road again and followed a path back to The Tarn and the car park.

Map: OS X 145

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Rodborough, Thursley, Elstead & Bagmoor Commons

Twenty-eight arrived for today’s eight mile walk. Only twenty-seven set off because one person forgot his boots and didn’t wish to walk in the shoes he had on.

It was a cold day and a wind made it colder. We started from Rodborough Common car park, headed SW on a bridleway, turned south at a junction and passed Forked Pond, turned west across Thursley Common and then turned north and joined the Dragonfly Trail. At the dragonfly sculpture we stopped for coffee.

We set off again, reached Pudmore Pond via the boardwalk, headed NE on a bridleway and then turned NW on a footpath that took us to Elstead where we stopped for lunch. Most of the paths were dry; we encountered little mud.

Our route back to the car park was over Guinea, Royal and Bagmoor Commons.

Map: OS X 145