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Explore Surrey: Trees and Timber

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Explore Surrey: Trees and Timber
Author: Explore Surrey, Published: 26 Feb 2018 Walk Rating:star1 Explore Surrey: Trees and Timber Circular Walkstar1 Explore Surrey: Trees and Timber Circular Walkstar1 Explore Surrey: Trees and Timber Circular Walkstar1 Explore Surrey: Trees and Timber Circular Walkstar1 Explore Surrey: Trees and Timber Circular Walk
Surrey, Hascombe
Walk Type: Hills, valleys and dales
Explore Surrey: Trees and Timber
Length: 6 miles,  Difficulty: boot Explore Surrey: Trees and Timber Circular Walk boot Explore Surrey: Trees and Timber Circular Walk boot Explore Surrey: Trees and Timber Circular Walk
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A 9km (5.5 mile) circular walk (which can be extended to 8.5 miles) from Hydon Heath car park, near Hascombe in Surrey. The walk explores several stretches of nearby mixed woodland (including a bluebell wood), as well as a stretch of the Greensand Way with fabulous views and the village of Hascombe with its beautiful church and pond. If you wish to extend the walk (to 8.5 miles), you can add another iFootpath circular walk (called ‘Hascombe Hill’) from the mid-way point before completing the remainder of this route. This walk is part of the Explore Surrey collection, published through a collaboration between iFootpath and Surrey County Council.

The walk includes several climbs and descents throughout, some of which are long or fairly steep. Most of the paths are unmade bridleways and these can be churned and muddy at times, so good boots are a must (or wellies with grips in the winter months). There are no stiles on route, but you will need to negotiate several steps and gates along the way. You will not be sharing any of the paths with livestock, as any livestock is held behind fences to the sides of the paths. The only road walking is a 100-metre stretch along a country lane and then a stretch through the village of Hascombe. Allow 2.5 hours.

If you are looking for refreshments, you will find The White Horse in Hascombe village, about halfway round the walk. Ordnance Survey Maps: Explorer OL33 Haslemere and Petersfield and Explorer 145 Guildford and Farnham. This walk follows public footpaths and bridleways which cross private and public land. Information is included for your interest, but please respect people’s privacy, keep dogs under control and remember the Countryside Code.

The walk starts and finishes at the free National Trust Hydon Heath car park (also called Hydon Ball), located on Salt Road between Milford and Hascombe. Approximate post code GU8 4BB. If you are coming by public transport, you can adjust the walk to start outside the White Horse pub in Hascombe village (Waypoint 4), which has bus stops nearby. For help with planning your journey by public transport please visit http://journeys.travelsmartsurrey.info.

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Walk Sections

Start to Hydon's Ball
Start to Hydon's Ball

Start point: 51.1528 lat, -0.6016 long
End point: 51.1473 lat, -0.6032 long

Standing on the car park entrance track with your back to the road, walk ahead along the track, passing the car park on your left. Pass alongside the vehicle barrier and then simply stay on the main bridleway track climbing steadily through the woodland. At the crossroads (by the small stone pyramid) keep straight ahead. At the top of the slope, turn right onto a side track which leads you uphill towards a green kiosk (actually a plant cabinet for the underground reservoir). At the kiosk, take the path at about 11 o’clock which leads you uphill to the summit of Hydon’s Ball, where you will find a large stone seat and a trig point.

This makes a great place to pause and appreciate the views. Hydon’s Ball was the name given to this site when a signal station was positioned here, used to synchronise time over long distances. You will notice the large stone seat is dedicated to Octavia Hill, one of the founders of the National Trust. She was a tireless campaigner for improving the welfare of city-dwellers, establishing the social housing movement and promoting recreational green spaces, particularly hilltops where people could rise above the city’s air pollution.

Hydon's Ball to Greensand Way
Hydon's Ball to Greensand Way

Start point: 51.1473 lat, -0.6032 long
End point: 51.1403 lat, -0.603 long

Standing with your back to the stone seat, walk ahead towards the trig pyramid and you will see a choice of two paths. Bear left to take the path which starts immediately to the left of the brick pyramid. Follow this sandy path leading you downhill, passing a few waymarker posts along the way. Part way down, you will come to a T-junction (with a vehicle barrier up to your right). Turn left and continue downhill for 50 metres to reach a T-junction at the bottom of the slope.

Turn right for about 50 paces and then turn left onto a narrow path which leads you through the tree belt, emerging to a T-junction with fenced open pastures ahead. Turn right to follow the path with fenced fields on your left and woodland on your right. The path soon swings left, becoming a grass track leading you between fenced livestock pastures.

At the T-junction in the track, turn right to follow another section of track between fenced pastures. After passing a house (behind a hedge) on your right, you will come to a pair of junctions (with fingerposts to your right and left). Turn left at the first junction for a few paces to reach the second fingerpost. At this junction, ignore the path to your right, instead keep ahead on the bridleway vehicle track (part of the Greensand Way).

Greensand Way to Markwick Lane
Greensand Way to Markwick Lane

Start point: 51.1403 lat, -0.603 long
End point: 51.1393 lat, -0.5874 long

Follow the vehicle track between banks for just 30 metres, then fork left up the bank to join the bank-top path (a continuation of the Greensand Way). Follow the path as it swings left and you will come to a waymarker post marking a choice of two bridleways. Take the right-hand one (signed GW for the Greensand Way), a narrow path leading you downhill into the trees.

Follow this woodland bridleway path, meandering and undulating ahead (some stretches can be very churned). Further along, the trees on your right end and you will be rewarded with far reaching views to the south. The Greensand Way runs for 108 miles from Haslemere in Surrey to Hamstreet in Kent, along the Greensand Ridge.

Stay with the bridleway path and eventually, after passing through another stretch of woodland, you will emerge to a junction with a lane, Markwick Lane.

Markwick Lane to White Horse
Markwick Lane to White Horse

Start point: 51.1393 lat, -0.5874 long
End point: 51.1452 lat, -0.5698 long

Taking care of any traffic, turn left along the lane for about 100 metres, then turn right to join a public bridleway, a continuation of the Greensand Way. This sunken bridleway leads you uphill to reach an old vehicle gate. Pass through the gap to the left of this and continue directly ahead on the woodland path (which soon merges with the path visible across to your left). This next stretch of sunken bridleway (which can be muddy) continues climbing ahead.

At the top of the climb, follow the subtle dog-leg (left then right) to join a more open path leading you directly ahead. At the first two crossroads, keep directly ahead, following the bridleway (the Greensand Way) across the top plateau of the hill (part of The Hurtwood). There are glimpses of beautiful views to the North Downs through the trees to your left.

Stay on the Greensand Way and, where you reach a staggered crossroads with a sleeper kerb ahead, go straight on, stepping down this sleeper kerb. Take care following this bridleway leading you steeply downhill, crossing a number of sleeper steps marked with posts and red reflectors. About half-way down the slope, look for a waymarker post on your right (with a yellow GW arrow). Fork right here, climbing up the bank with care, then bear left to join the path running on top of the bank.

You will reach a waymarker at a path fork. Take the left-hand branch, taking care on this steep descent and using the handrails for your safety. At the bottom of the slope, you will reach a gate ahead. Pass through this, go down the steps and follow the enclosed path ahead, with a fenced pasture on your left. Pass through the next gate to reach a crossroads and go ahead on the path between pastures. You will emerge to the parking area, directly opposite the White Horse pub in Hascombe.

White Horse to B2130
White Horse to B2130

Start point: 51.1452 lat, -0.5698 long
End point: 51.153 lat, -0.5739 long

NOTE: If you wish to extend the walk to 8.5 miles, you can follow the 3 mile iFootpath walk called ‘Hascombe Hill’ from this parking area, and then pick up the continuation of this walk once you have finished the additional loop.

Standing at the entrance to the parking area (with the White Horse ahead and to your left), cross the main road with care diagonally left, to join Church Road (immediately to the left of the pub). Church Road, as the name suggests, leads you past the pretty Church Cottage and then St Peter’s Church on your left, before passing the idyllic large village pond on your right.

Stay along Church Road as it bends right and then left. Further along, pass Matthew’s Place on your right and then, as you reach the gateway for Upper House Farm ahead, turn left (leaving the Greensand Way) to pass Lower House on your right. Ignore a kissing gate into a pasture on your right, instead keep ahead on the main bridleway which soon swings right.

At the next junction (with Mill Lane signed to the left), keep ahead on the stone track, passing Forge Cottage on your left. At the T-junction in the path, turn left and follow the grass path between fenced pastures. You will emerge alongside a wide gate to reach a junction with the B2130.

B2130 to High Barn
B2130 to High Barn

Start point: 51.153 lat, -0.5739 long
End point: 51.1575 lat, -0.5829 long

Cross over the road with care and go straight ahead to join the track signed as a public bridleway. This track leads you uphill, passing a number of properties on your left. Where the track bends left into the last property, keep ahead on the sunken bridleway path leading you into woodland. Towards the top of the climb, you will pass two properties (High Winkworth and The Orangery) both on your left.

These two properties were once part of the Winkworth Farm complex, the home of Dr Wilfrid Fox. Dr Fox was a leading dermatologist in London but also a passionate horticulturalist. From 1938 he created nearby Winkworth Arboretum (now in the care of the National Trust) and in 1948 was awarded the highest honour of the Royal Horticultural Society, the Victoria Medal of Honour.

50 metres later, you will reach a junction with the access drive (with the property Sullingstead on your right). Turn left here and follow the access lane down to a T-junction. Turn right and follow the tarmac access road to reach a junction with B2130. Turn sharp left, to join another property access lane (signed as a public bridleway), passing the sign for High Barn on your left.

High Barn to End
High Barn to End

Start point: 51.1575 lat, -0.5829 long
End point: 51.1531 lat, -0.6018 long

Where the access lane swings left into the property High Barn, keep ahead on the unmade bridleway path, passing a pretty bluebell wood on your right. Further along the bridleway leads you downhill, before bending right and climbing to continue with fenced pastures across to your left. Stay with the bridleway ahead, leading you downhill again.

At the bottom of the slope the fence on your left ends. Keep ahead on the woodland path for just over 100 metres to reach a T-junction with a stone vehicle track. Turn left and follow the grass and stone track climbing gently. At the top of the slope, where the track bends right, you will see a waymarker with yellow arrow on your left. Turn left onto this short path which leads to the road. Cross over with care and go ahead on the continuation of the footpath ahead. This will lead you directly into the Hydon Heath car park where the walk began.

Remember...the best way of following our walking guides is to use the iFootpath App (iOS and Android) where you will have all the information in the palm of your hand and see your exact location on the live map as you travel. You can also add comments, photos, ratings and track your own routes.

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network Explore Surrey: Trees and Timber Circular Walk Original GPX source file

Text and images for this walk are Copyright © 2018 by the author exploresurrey and may not be reproduced without permission.


3 comments for "Explore Surrey: Trees and Timber"

Beautiful walk, especially when the bluebells are at their best. A bit muddy in places but well worth the effort. An excellent pub half way round with superb food and friendly staff. Extremely detailed and clear instructions, very enjoyable, thank you.

By Louisehawkee on 08 May 2018

If you like bluebells you’ll love this walk. A delightful ramble through beautiful, quiet, woodland and pasture. It does get muddy though in places. Easy to follow and a lovely pub with large garden half way! The starting car park is called Hydon Ball at the entrance and not Hydon Heath - confused us for a bit.

ADMIN RESPONSE: Glad you enjoyed the walk, we've added a note in the Getting There notes to save anyone else getting confused.

By elizabethear on 06 May 2018

Beautiful walk on a spring day. Great directions, easy to follow. Some parts muddy even on a warm day so recommend sturdy footwear. Thank you.

By PaulB31 on 22 Apr 2018

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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