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Stoughton Down and Kingley Vale

There are currently 3 comments and 1 photos online for this walk.

Stoughton Down and Kingley Vale
Author: Claire, Published: 30 Jun 2013 Walk rating : Rating:star1 Stoughton Down and Kingley Vale Walking Guidestar1 Stoughton Down and Kingley Vale Walking Guidestar1 Stoughton Down and Kingley Vale Walking Guidestar0 Stoughton Down and Kingley Vale Walking Guidestar0 Stoughton Down and Kingley Vale Walking Guide
West Sussex, South Downs
Walk Type: Hills, valleys and dales
Stoughton Down and Kingley Vale
Length: 5 miles,  Difficulty: boot Stoughton Down and Kingley Vale Walking Guide boot Stoughton Down and Kingley Vale Walking Guide boot Stoughton Down and Kingley Vale Walking Guide
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A 4.5 mile circular walk in a really picturesque part of the South Downs National Park. The walk begins in Stoughton Down before climbing high into the Kingley Vale Nature Reserve where the climb is rewarded with spectacular views both to the north and south. The walk then descends to the pretty village of Stoughton before returning to the car park.

The walk has one long climb and an equivalent descent. The tracks are all fairly wide and are, in the most, well made with stone with only a few parts under the trees that can get quite muddy. The last mile of the route is along a quiet country road. There are no stiles or gates to negotiate so, if you’re up for the challenge, it would be possible to get a rugged push chair around the route. Approximate time 2 hours.

The walk starts from the Stoughton Down Forestry Commission car park (2 metre height restriction). The car park can be found on a sharp bend midway between the small villages of Stoughton and East Marden in West Sussex. Nearest post code PO18 9JQ.

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Walk Sections

Start to Multiway Junction
Start to Multiway Junction

Start point: 50.9074 lat, -0.8421 long
End point: 50.9027 lat, -0.8294 long

From the car park, join the wide stone track beyond the metal vehicle barrier. Follow this track with woodland to the right and an open field to the left. At the fork keep right on the main stone bridleway as it heads into the trees. At the next junction, fork right again onto the signposted bridleway.

The path now begins to climb and you will pass between a beautiful section of beech and oak woodland. At the top you will emerge to a multiway junction of paths.

Multiway Junction to Devil's Hump
Multiway Junction to Devil's Hump

Start point: 50.9027 lat, -0.8294 long
End point: 50.8931 lat, -0.8365 long

Go straight ahead on the main bridleway and take time to enjoy the views across the South Downs over to the right. At the first fork, keep right on the main stone bridleway.

On the right you will pass a number of old yew trees. Yews have been on this site for many hundreds of years and some of the trees are thought to be more than 2,000 years old. This is thought to be one of Europe’s most extensive ancient yew forests.

Further along, ignore the signed fork (sharp left), simply continue on the main stone track. After some distance you will pass a sign marking the start of the Kingley Vale Nature Reserve. Soon afterwards, fork left onto the grass path which leads you to the top of one of Devil’s Humps.

Devil's Hump to Stoughton
Devil's Hump to Stoughton

Start point: 50.8931 lat, -0.8365 long
End point: 50.8959 lat, -0.8623 long

Devil’s Humps are a series of four Bronze Age barrows or burial mounds. The alternative name for the mounds is King’s Graves, a name from folklore that suggests Viking leaders were buried here after they were defeated by the men of Chichester. It is the extensive views from this point along with the ancient yew trees that earns Kingley Vale Nature Reserve the nickname ‘Yews and Views’.

Take time to enjoy the views from the top of Devil’s Hump. To the north you’ll have views further across the South Downs with the suburbs of Portsmouth just visible over to the far left. It is the views to the south that really make the climb worthwhile. Chichester Cathedral’s spire stands tall as an obvious landmark. On clear days the sea will be clearly visible with the Isle of Wight across to the west and Bognor Regis across to the east.

When you’ve finished enjoying the views return to the stone bridleway and continue in the same direction. Keep ahead as the stone path becomes a wide grassy ride. You’ll emerge through an arch of trees to a T-junction with fenced fields ahead. Turn right here and follow the main stone bridleway (enjoying the views along the way) all the way downhill to reach a T-junction with the village road in Stoughton.

Stoughton to End
Stoughton to End

Start point: 50.8959 lat, -0.8623 long
End point: 50.9066 lat, -0.843 long

Turn right along the village road. On the left you’ll pass the entrance lane to St Mary’s Church, a Saxon church dating back to 1050. You can make a small detour to visit this should you wish, otherwise just keep ahead on the village road. Pass the pub on the left and follow the road through several tunnels of trees for about a mile to reach the car park where the walk began.

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Text and images for this walk are Copyright © 2013 by the author clairesharpuk and may not be reproduced without permission.

3 comments for "Stoughton Down and Kingley Vale"

Briliant walk for winter, as it's very good underfoot; only one muddy section as you reach the grassy track leading away from the Devil's Humps. To avoid walking along the road at the end, you can take the Monarch's Way at Old Bartons (on the right not long after the Hare and Hounds. Follow this track all the way to the top of the hill where you rejoin the Multiway. It means retracing your steps a bit back down to the car park but you might think it's worth the repetition to avoid the road. By my smartphone tracking app, this made the walk 5.75 miles.

By AnneEngland5 on 17 Jan 2015

As said above a very good walk but my suggestion to avoid the road is to take the path left just after the Hare and Hounds. This goes up the hill a bit. You then turn right which takes you on a nice walk through the woods coming out at Wildham Farm. When you reach the road turn right and its not far back to the car park.

By gazleton on 26 Nov 2015

We did this walk using my Tramper all terrain mobility scooter. A terrific walk with fantastic views. Really enjoyed it. The last bit is quite steep and would be slippery after rain, but we did it ok as it had been dry for some time. The Hare and Hounds does good food and was very dog friendly.

By Jules19 on 02 Sep 2016

The information in this guide has been provided in good faith and is intended only as a guide, not a statement of fact. You are advised to check the accuracy of the information provided and should not use this guide for navigational directions nor should you rely on the accuracy of the weather forecast. You are advised to take appropriate clothing, footwear, equipment and navigational materials with you according to the current and possible weather and nature of the terrain. Always follow the country code and follow any additional warnings or instructions that may be available. Some walks may be very strenuous and you are advised to seek medical advice if you have any doubts as to your capability to complete the walk.

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1 gallery images for "Stoughton Down and Kingley Vale"

2283_0Facebook1474277104 Stoughton Down and Kingley Vale Walking Guide Image by: Facebook
Uploaded: 19 Sep 2016
On my trusted Tramper. Great views


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