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Holt Heath

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Holt Heath
Author: mike evans, Published: 03 Mar 2019 Walk Rating:star0 Holt Heath, New Forest  - Dorset Walking Guidestar0 Holt Heath, New Forest  - Dorset Walking Guidestar0 Holt Heath, New Forest  - Dorset Walking Guidestar0 Holt Heath, New Forest  - Dorset Walking Guidestar0 Holt Heath, New Forest  - Dorset Walking Guide
Dorset, New Forest
Walk Type: Footpaths and byways
Holt Heath
Length: 4 miles,  Difficulty: boot Holt Heath, New Forest  - Dorset Walking Guide boot Holt Heath, New Forest  - Dorset Walking Guide
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0002_sunny_intervals Holt Heath, New Forest  - Dorset Walking GuideToday's weather
9 °C, Partly cloudy, Wind: 6 mph W
Next few days: Hover over icon for more info.
0002_sunny_intervals Holt Heath, New Forest  - Dorset Walking Guide 0017_cloudy_with_light_rain Holt Heath, New Forest  - Dorset Walking Guide 0002_sunny_intervals Holt Heath, New Forest  - Dorset Walking Guide 0002_sunny_intervals Holt Heath, New Forest  - Dorset Walking Guide 0002_sunny_intervals Holt Heath, New Forest  - Dorset Walking Guide

A 4 mile circular walk around Holt Heath at the edge of the New Forest in Dorset. Walking in heathland can be difficult to describe due to the number of animal tracks mixed with official routes (so remember to use the App's live GPS map to help with navigation). This walk sticks to major tracks around the heath and so you should have no difficulty following the walk. The walk has no significant hills to walk up. There are no stiles on route but you will need to negotiate a few gates. There may be free-roaming cattle and ponies on the heath. Allow 2 hours.

The start of the walk is some 9 miles from Ringwood. Take the A31 from Ringwood going south west. At the A338/Horton road roundabout, exit the A31 and turn right following directions to Ashley Heath. After passing through Three Legged Cross turn left at a crossroads (signed Mannington) after one mile. After about a further 1.8 miles, cross a cattle grid to enter Holt Heath. About half a mile later, and just before you cross another cattle grid to exit the heath, turn right down a road signed Lowerow. A few metres down is a layby on the right suitable for a few cars. (There are two short posts with a metal pole across them just before the layby on the right). The latitude and longitude of the parking is 50.840125,-1.934990. The nearest post code is for a property just outside the heath, BH21 7EB, so use the GPS map to guide you to the exact starting layby once you get close.

Walk Sections

Start to Trig Point
Start to Trig Point

Start point: 50.8405 lat, -1.9351 long
End point: 50.8447 lat, -1.9224 long

From the parking spot, walk into the heath passing the two short posts with a metal pole between them. Walk straight ahead into a wide grassy area between gorse bushes. The path shortly curves gently round to the left then right before meandering straight ahead. After nearly 400 metres, go straight across a crossroads of tracks.

Shortly some electricity pylons come into view in the middle distance on the left. These appear to be marching towards our track in the distance. Continue on this wide and fairly straight track for some 625 metres to pass a trig point up a short track on your left.

Trig Point to Road
Trig Point to Road

Start point: 50.8447 lat, -1.9224 long
End point: 50.8408 lat, -1.921 long

The track now drops fairly sharply downhill to meet another wide track at a T-junction of tracks. Turn right here to walk for some 470 metres to meet a road. Carefully walk straight across the road.

Road to Gate
Road to Gate

Start point: 50.8408 lat, -1.921 long
End point: 50.8304 lat, -1.919 long

The way ahead is not obvious here, but simply walk straight into the heath. Cross a small ditch and continue ahead for 20 metres when the direction ahead will become clear. Cross a track (going from left to right) and walk straight ahead to join an obvious wide grassy track. The track initially bears right and then goes straight over a distance of 300 metres or so, to reach a crossroads of tracks. Turn left here. Continue gently downhill for 350 metres on this wide track, passing a small stand of fir trees on your right to then bear right and then left. Ignore a narrower track leading off to the right as your wider track bears left. Continue for another 170 metres to meet a crossroads of tracks and turn right.

Shortly feed into a wider track and continue past a couple of small silver birch on your left (see image). Continue ahead as the track curves to the left and goes downhill. As the curve increases after 400 metres or so, a stand of trees can be seen ahead to the right. Finally, the track curves now to the right over another couple of hundred metres to reach a large galvanised five bar gate with a small one to the right of it.

Gate to Gravel Track
Gate to Gravel Track

Start point: 50.8304 lat, -1.919 long
End point: 50.8355 lat, -1.9347 long

Pass through the smaller of the gates and pass over a track (passing from left to right) to walk straight ahead. Walk for 450 metres straight ahead passing straight over a junction of tracks half way along. The track terminates at another large five bar gate with a smaller one to the left of it. Pass through the left-hand gate and turn right onto a wide and straight track.

Take care along this track as it does carry some traffic. Walk on this track (actually more an unmade roadway) for just over 600 metres to pass a five bar gate on the right and then to pass a point where another roadway goes off to the left. DO NOT take either of these, but continue straight ahead. After a further 300 metres the roadway swings sharply to the right as a footpath leads off straight ahead. Turn right (about 90 degrees) to stay with the track. After a further 400 metres the wood on your right ends as the track narrows somewhat and becomes fenced each side. Walk now past a number of paddocks on your right. 170 metres brings you to a road. Turn right to walk along this, taking care of any traffic. Pass a sign on your left indicating Holt Heath, to walk towards a point 100 metres or so ahead where a wooden fence meets the road on both sides.

Pass through these fences and over a cattle grid. Continue ahead for 50 metres or so until the trees on the left fall back a bit from the road. Then, a short distance on, look out for a short waymarker post on your left at the start of a narrow path. Turn left off the road and cross a small ditch to join this path. Bear right into the wood on this bridleway. When you meet a wider gravel track turn left onto it.

Gravel Track to End
Gravel Track to End

Start point: 50.8355 lat, -1.9347 long
End point: 50.8407 lat, -1.9354 long

Shortly, when meeting a five-bar gate leading to a property, swing right with the track to pass in front of the property. Once you have walked past the front of the property, meet a small wooden five-bar gate and pass through it. Follow the now rather narrower path, with a ditch and a hedge on the left and a few buildings on the right. Shortly after passing the buildings, meet a large five-bar gate with a smaller one to the right of it and pass through this.

Continue with a wire fence on the left (and open land beyond) and woods to the right. Bear right at a junction of paths towards some white-painted bungalows and a house. Pass the buildings to walk onto a drive. Follow the drive out to reach a road. Turn left on the road and walk a short distance to reach a road junction. The road that you want is straight ahead, but slightly off-set to the left. A short distance up this road is your parking spot 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 Holt Heath, New Forest  - Dorset Walking Guide Original GPX source file

Text and images for this walk are Copyright © 2019 by iFootpath and the author seekin and may not be reproduced without permission.


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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