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This Week's Walks - Archive

Please see the Saturday Walker's Club This Week's Walks page.

This is an archive of walks done by the Saturday Walker's Club. You should only need to use this page if the SWC website is down.

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Saturday, 25 November 2017

A Traverse of the High Weald and Ashdown Forest (Horsted Keynes to Forest Row or East Grinstead)

Saturday Third Walk – A Traverse of the High Weald and Ashdown Forest from Horsted Keynes to Forest Row (or East Grinstead) t=swc.132

SWC Walk 132 (morning) and 23 (afternoon)

Distance:  11.7 Miles or 18.9 km for those more metrically minded (or 14.7-16.7 miles/23.7-26.8 km if carrying on to East Grinstead)

Difficulty:  4.5 out of 10 (5.5 on the extended route)

Train:  Take the 9:17 AM Eastbourne train from London Victoria (stopping at Clapham Junction at 9:23 and East Croydon at 9:33), arriving at Haywards Heath at 9:59 or the 9:12 AM Thameslink Brighton train from London Bridge (stopping at East Croydon at 9:25), arriving at Haywards Heath at 9:55; in either case, THEN, catch the 10:18 AM number 270 bus from the Perrymount Road stop a short distance from the Haywards Heath train station for a short journey to arrive in Horsted Keynes at 10:40. 

To return from Forest Row, you have a choice:  either take the 270 bus a short ride to East Grinstead at 16:03; 17:04; 18:03; 18:57 or 19:46 and catch a train at 07 or 37 past the hour until 22:37 OR take a longer 270 bus journey back to Haywards Heath at 16:19 or 17:33 and catch one of the fairly regular trains back to London. Buy a day return to Haywards Heath; however, if taking the train back from East Grinstead, you may need to purchase a supplement back as far as East Croydon.   

This walk combines the morning of SWC 132 with the afternoon of SWC 23 to make a linear traverse across the High Weald and the heathland of the Ashdown Forest.  With any luck we should be able to catch the last remaining colors of autumn in the High Weald without encountering too much mud across the heathland….For the more energetic, the walk can be extended with a late afternoon/early evening possibly nocturnal walk into East Grinstead either along a former railway line (approximately 3 miles) or more challengingly by using the afternoon instructions of SWC 40 (approximately 5.5 miles).  You can find more information about the walk and download the walk instructions here and here.  Don't forget both sets of instructions!

The recommended lunch spot is the Red Lion (01825 740 265) in Chelwood Gate (5.5 miles/9 km into the walk). Tea and other late afternoon refreshments can be had at various places in Forest Row.

Enjoy the walk!

2 comments:

Anonymous said...

Thanks with anticipation Stargazer!

Walker said...

At last a sunny Saturday - w=gorgeous-sunshine in fact: a magical windless day. N=9 enjoyed it, three (four?) on the Victoria train, one on an earlier Thameslink train, making five who caught the bus to Horsted Keynes. “Events, dear boy, events” (Harold Macmillan, whose house is passed on this walk) meant four others who took the specified Thameslink train arrived late and had to share a taxi (no more expensive per person than the bus actually). They caught us up at lunch, but then as they were sandwich eaters left first and we did not see them again.

This combination walk produces a lovely contrast between morning (gentle Wealden fields, woods and hills) and afternoon (heathland with some extensive views). Autumn colour was over apart from some remaining dead leaves on oaks, but the heath in the afternoon was a symphony of browns. Lunch was nice but the two shared plates of “English tapas” (a sausage roll and a selection of Spanish tapas) was perhaps a bit much when one had jumbo fish and chips to follow.

In Forest Row three went to the Chequers Inn, two to Taeffels cafe. One got the bus back to Haywards Heath. Four of us walked under a pale crescent moon and stars up the old railway line to East Grinstead - a lovely night walk, the first of many this winter we hope.