Last night was the coldest one this winter. The hard frost left the deep mud that the leaders waded through on their recce two weeks ago frozen solid. Areas in shade remained covered in frost all day.
Eighteen of us met at Thursley recreation ground for the 8½ mile walk. All wore extra clothes. There was a clear blue sky all day and, consequently, great views.
We headed south on the Greensand Way to Smallbrook and Hedge Farm where we turned right on a footpath that joined a byway to Ridgeway Farm. At a minor road we turned south on a bridleway and followed it to Hindhead and the NT café, our stop for lunch. Some found it warm enough in the sun to sit outside and eat their picnic. Eight people ate in the new Pickwick tea and coffee room (a few minutes walk along the road from the NT centre and well worth a visit).
After lunch we headed east to Gibbet Hill and paused to look at the view. There was smog over London. From Gibbet Hill we continued to Boundless Copse, Begley Farm, Blackhanger Farm, turned right on a bridleway, then left on a footpath across a field and up and over Rutton Hill to Emley Farm. Here we turned right. At Rutton Hill Road we turned left and walked downhill to Bowlhead Green. After a brief pause for refreshment we turned left on a footpath by the crossroads. This joined the GSW; we turned west on this and followed it back to Thursley.
Map: OS X 133