Walking Matters

Godalming & Haslemere Ramblers


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Hambledon

There was plenty of mud on this morning’s 5½ mile walk thanks to recent heavy rain. Fortunately, none was the sort that stuck to boots.

Twenty arrived for the start on Culmer Lane near Sweetwater Pond. No one fancied using the small car park by the pond in case a large puddle at the entrance proved fatal for their vehicles. One person wore Wellington boots but she declined the suggestion that she walk through the puddle to check its depth because, she said, her boots leaked. She pointed out splits in both of them.

The leader took us from Sweetwater Pond, across Buss’s Common, up Potter’s Hill, over West Surrey Golf Course, up to the top of Hydon’s Ball (coffee stop), near Little Burgate Farm, along a short section of the Greensand Way to Hambledon church, past Hilltop Farm and Stonepit Hill and back to Culmer Lane

Maps: OS X 145, 133

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Annual photographic evening

There was a good turnout for yesterday’s event—at least 70. And for the first time there was a waiting list for those wanting to show photos. Those wishing to present next year will have to get their bids in early.

There were six 15-minute slots each with a maximum of twenty photos (20 is plenty) and a break for the buffet and raffle after the fourth one.

We started at 7pm and finished by 9.30pm. Little food remained. The raffle made £162 which more than covered the cost of the hire of the venue.

The presenters showed photos from Hankley Common, Cornwall and the Inner Hebrides; Spitzbergen; Peru and Bolivia; Roses (Spain); Scotland; and Table Mountain.

It was a grand social occasion allowing members of all abilities to meet and chat.


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Busbridge Woods, Winkworth Arboretum & Hascombe

The leader lost almost half (7/16) the group on today’s nine mile walk. They’d gone ahead after the coffee break, with her permission, keen not to hold up the others. Two tricky stiles would soon be encountered.

Reaching a junction at the bottom of a field, the one at the head of the vanguard looked round to ask the leader for directions. The leader, so she thought, waved right so the seven set off along the Greensand Way, on a section that is a muddy trench, and disappeared from view. However, the leader’s wave was a coincidence; it was to point out a feature of the landscape to someone next to her and was not in response to a request for directions. She was unaware such had been made.

When the leader reached the junction she suspected that the missing seven had taken the wrong route, the part of the GSW that she intended to bypass. She and her nine followers continued as planned. About 20 minutes later the leavers and remainers were reunited and the misunderstanding was discovered. Judging by the state of the leavers’ boots, the route they took was very muddy.

Needless to say, B-you-know-what was a topic of conversation on the walk.

Maps: OS X 145, 133


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Busbridge Woods, Winkworth Arboretum & Hascombe

Twenty-one turned up for today’s nine mile walk, twenty more than the leader expected given the weather forecast. Rain was likely all day. However, it held off until the shorter part of the walk after lunch.

Many footpaths were muddy but few were slippery and no one fell over.

From the Hydon Heath car park we headed for Winkworth Arboretum and Thorncombe Street, then continued east to join the Greensand Way and followed this to Hascombe where we stopped for lunch. Near Gatestreet Farm there was a wonderful display of daffodils in the grass verge.

After lunch we continued on the GSW to Markwick Lane, turned north on the lane to Little Burgate Farm and returned to the car park via Hydon Heath.

Maps: OS X 145, 133


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Broadwater Park to Bramley

Storm Freya was on the way but that didn’t deter the eleven who arrived for this morning’s five mile walk. Most were curious to see who else would turn up in the rain.

A few paths were muddy but none were waterlogged. Floors of woodland were now lined with leaves of bluebells and wild garlic.

We set off from Broadwater Park, crossed the A3100, walked south along the towing path, crossed the canal, passed Tannachie, continued to Bramley on the Fox Way and stopped for coffee under the shelter of the old railway station.

After this we headed NW on the Wey South Path, crossed the A281 near Gosden Common, passed the sewage works, crossed the canal and headed back to the start along the towing path.

Map: OS X 145


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Shere, Newlands Corner & the North Downs Way

Four of the men on today’s eight mile walk had extra exercise before the start. They pushed a car—uphill. The car had stalled in the entrance to the overflow car park in Shere. Unbeknownst to the driver the battery was faulty and wouldn’t restart the engine. The vehicle now blocked access to and from the car park. Ramblers to the rescue.

There were 24 on the walk. We headed through Shere and continued on paths towards St Martha’s Hill before branching off north at the foot of the hill and heading to Newlands Corner for lunch.

Yesterday was the hottest winter day on record; today was little different. It could have been summer but for the lack of leaves on trees.

We returned on the NDW and branched south on a byway to reach the car park. The faulty battery had revived in the meantime so the jump leads that someone produced weren’t needed.

Map: OS X 145


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Elstead, Thursley, Ockley & Guinea Commons

We walked round the edges of the four commons in sunshine. There was not a cloud in the sky. After a slight overnight frost the temperature gradually rose so by halfway round the 5½ mile route most of the 21 on the walk had shed their jackets and gloves.

Elstead Moat car park, to our surprise, was reopened yesterday. It is now covered with well-compacted grey chippings. There is little sign of the yellow sludge of the previous resurfacing material.

Map: OS X 145