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Washington Southern Loop

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Washington Southern Loop
Author: mike evans, Published: 22 Mar 2017 Walk Rating:star1 Washington Southern Loop Walking Guide star1 Washington Southern Loop Walking Guide star1 Washington Southern Loop Walking Guide star1 Washington Southern Loop Walking Guide star0 Washington Southern Loop Walking Guide
West Sussex, South Downs
Walk Type: Hills, valleys and dales
Washington Southern Loop
Length: 4 miles,  Difficulty: boot Washington Southern Loop Walking Guide boot Washington Southern Loop Walking Guide boot Washington Southern Loop Walking Guide
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A four mile round walk in West Sussex, partly along the South Downs Way, with expansive views down to the coast and across the South Downs. You should be aware that the walk crosses the A24 dual carriageway twice, provision for the footpath is provided but care should be taken as the traffic is fast moving at these points and visibility is not easy. Initially the walk climbs quite steeply. The total ascent is 550 feet and this is mainly in the first section, after which it is downhill or flat. The views are worth it! You will not be sharing the paths with cattle or sheep (although we encountered some sheep being moved via the tracks). There are no stiles on route but you will need to negotiate some gates. Allow 2 hours.

The walk starts just off the A24 south of Washington in West Sussex. From the roundabout on the A24 at Washington, travel south for just over a mile and keep a very close eye out for a turning on the left, which is quite small. Once on this road (Washington Bostal), turn right after 50 metres or so and drive 100 metres to a car park which sits on the South Downs Way. The Lat/Lng of the parking is 50.896574, -0.408254. The nearest post code is RH20 4AZ which will take you to a point too far north on Washington Bostal.

Walk Sections

Start to View Point
Start to View Point

Start point: 50.8966 lat, -0.4082 long
End point: 50.897 lat, -0.3984 long

The car park sits on the South Downs Way. Start by exiting the car park at the opposite end to the entrance. With a two-way fingerpost on your left (indicating the South Downs Way in both directions), set off past a vehicle barrier (in an easterly direction). The wide track climbs slowly at first. After 170 metres or so, the track splits at a Y-junction. Take the left-hand of the options.

A further 220 metres brings you to a water pumping station on the left, and a further 220 metres bring you to the first waypoint. The track has started to climb at a greater rate at this point so it is worth pausing to take a breath and perhaps to climb the bank on the left and enjoy the spectacular views all round.

View Point to Sheep Rest Point
View Point to Sheep Rest Point

Start point: 50.897 lat, -0.3984 long
End point: 50.8922 lat, -0.3962 long

From the viewpoint, continue along the South Downs Way for another 600 metres as it climbs more steeply to reach a T-junction of tracks (with a small grass triangle in the middle). Turn right here to part ways with the South Downs Way.

A short distance ahead the track splits, both tracks going in the 'same' direction. They meet up again after 150 metres so take your preferred route. Again the same thing happens almost immediately. We took the right-hand option on this occasion and paused to take in the view and a coffee. Fortunate really as 400 sheep decided at that moment to come down the lane and take the other branch. It amazed Bracken our dog!

Sheep Rest Point to A24 Crossing
Sheep Rest Point to A24 Crossing

Start point: 50.8922 lat, -0.3962 long
End point: 50.8876 lat, -0.4107 long

From our 'sheep' rest point, the track goes downhill for 1.3km. There are views down to the sea on the left and open countryside on the right. The grand building of Windlesham School can be seen below you to the right. The route will take you directly behind it shortly.

At the bottom of the hill, turn right at a four-way fingerpost. Continue downhill as the track (which has now become more of a rough road) curves initially round to the right. After 600 metres as a track goes off to the right, turn left and go through a large galvanised five-bar gate and into a rather run-down industrial area. Walk down through the complex for 130 metres (noting the rather unusual terrace of buildings on the left with their roofs all sloping) and turn right to exit onto the side of the A24. Turn right and walk the few paces to the crossing point. Taking great care to ensure that the road is clear, cross the A24. On the far side turn right and walk for a short distance to a green public bridleway sign.

A24 Crossing to Turning Point
A24 Crossing to Turning Point

Start point: 50.8876 lat, -0.4107 long
End point: 50.8867 lat, -0.4241 long

Follow the green bridleway sign a short distance up to a narrow road. Cross the road and follow a waymarker to go up a bank and into a field. Follow the trees on the right-hand side of the field for 440 metres as the path bends round to the left. As it reaches some fir trees, the path curves round to the right. Follow it as it passes a waymarker on your left. In a short distance the path bends to the left, now with trees on your left and a fenced-off field on your right.

Continue for 450 metres until you reach a narrow road at a small grass triangle, with a three-way fingerpost.

Turning Point to End
Turning Point to End

Start point: 50.8867 lat, -0.4241 long
End point: 50.891 lat, -0.4165 long

On meeting this three-way fingerpost, turn right to walk down the narrow road. Walk down this road for some 560 metres to reach the back of Windlesham House School. Continue ahead as the road curves round to the right and, in 220 metres, look out for a footpath leading off to the left into some trees.

Take this path and follow it for 700 metres or so to emerge onto a narrow road (which is part of the South Downs Way) and turn right. Follow the South Downs Way for 220 metres (on the narrow road, now with arm-co fencing) until you see a footpath by a fingerpost on the left (just before reaching the A24). As this path emerges by the A24, turn left and walk the few metres to the crossing point. Again exercising great care, cross the A24.

On the far side, turn left and follow the path to emerge opposite the road that leads to the car park. Follow this back to the car park and the walk starting point.

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Text and images for this walk are Copyright © 2017 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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