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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.

Blog Archive

Saturday, 9 September 2017

Saturday Walk - Pulborough to Halfway Bridge (via Tillington) [New Walk]

Length:  26.0 km (16.1 mi) [shorter walk possible]
Ascent/Descent:  439/422m; Net Walking Time: ca. 6 ¼ hours
Toughness:  8 out of 10 

Take the 09.06 Portsmouth Harbour & Bognor Regis train from Victoria, arriving Pulborough at 10.17 (you have to be in the rear part of the train, as it splits in Horsham)
Return trains: xx.23 and xx.55 to 18.23, then 19.05, 19.35, 19.59, 20.36, 21.36, 22.38, 23.08.
Buy a Pulborough Return.

This walk is a winding excursion through the Rother and Lod valleys in central West Sussex, routing through various quaint, remote villages, some atmospheric woods and several fine commons, part-wooded, part sandy heathland. Frequent southerly views of the South Downs and of Black Down to the north and long stretches in deep, shady holloways add to the mix, making this a very varied outing.
After leaving Pulborough on a westerly route familiar from other walks, past the picturesque Stopham Bridge and church and on to Littleworth Common, the walk leads in a southerly direction through the Rother valley and picks up the Serpent Trail Long Distance Path up to the idyllic Sutton Common heathland and various woods to Burton Park, a large estate with multiple ponds in a fold of the South Downs.
Leaving the Serpent Trail, the two recommended lunch options are back in the Rother valley, in Coultershaw Bridge and Tillington, and in the afternoon the route rises to Upperton and Hoe Hill, in between dropping into the Lod Valley through woods and fields. The finish is a descent back to the Lod River at Halfway Bridge, where another well-run pub helps whiling away the wait for the bus back to Pulborough.
Note: The route off Hoe Hill includes a precipitous descent down a very narrow and slippery gully.

A Morning Shortcut cuts out Sutton Common heathland (cuts 1.2 km and 48m ascent).
An Afternoon Shortcut cuts out several woods and the last sharp ascents around Hoe Hill by taking a much more direct route through the Lod valley (cuts 4.4 km and 135m ascent). Rated 7/10.
Note: Both Shortcuts are currently only available map-led.

After the walk you will need to catch a bus line 1 (Midhurst – Worthing via Pulborough Station) from Halfway Bridge. Convenient stops for further shortcuts are: Tillington (late lunch stop) and Petworth (reached shortly after lunch via an alternative route through Petworth Park). The bus leaves Midhurst hourly on xx.30, then 17.40 and 18.45 and passes Halfway Bridge a few minutes later, Tillington 8 and Petworth 15 later resp. 

The Badgers in Coultershaw Bridge (13.0 km/8.1 mi, food to 14.30);
The Horse Guards Inn in Tillington (16.0 km/10.0 mi, food to 15.00).
The Hollist Arms in Lodsworth (1.6 km from the end); The Halfway Bridge at the end of the walk.
Back in Pulborough: The Banyan Tree restaurant (300m beyond the station); The Oddfellows Arms (1.2 km beyond the station); The Chequers Hotel (650m beyond the station).
Petworth Ending: Audit Room Café at Petworth House (NT); Plenty of options in Petworth.

For walk directions, map, height profile, photos and gpx/kml files  click here.


Thomas G said...

Table booked for 13.30, at The Horse Guards Inn.

DAC said...

Intend going.

Stargazer said...

n=10 adventurous walkers set off under w=initially-bright-sunny-clear-and-crisp-skies to test out this new route in initially familiar territory. After passing the always charming Stopham Bridge and atmospheric Stopham House, the route soon ventured into uncharted territory through the Sutton Common heathland which painted a pretty picture against the backdrop of the South Downs ahead on the horizon. The route continued through a combination of woods and open parklands before eventually leading into a deep and atmospheric holloway initially with sandstone bluff and then trees rising tall on either side -- truly worthy of a film set...Lunch soon followed and, at least for the pub diners, was definitely well worth waiting 10 idyllic country pub with an interesting and varied menu of freshly prepared offerings which they were happy to adapt as required...Not long after lunch some w=dark-and-brooding-clouds closed in eventually dropping their load of moderate rain for about an hour before the sun re-emerged when we were atop Hoe Hill with interesting cloud formations lingering around us. Although shorter, the afternoon stretch included more ascents and descents with some great views of the Blackdown and Bexleyhill (visited on other SWC walks) and of course the "precipitous descent" highlighted in the walk post -- which we approached with some trepidation -- but managed without too much difficulty....Most rounded out the day with drinks and more tasty treats at the very pleasant and accommodating Halfway Bridge before catching the 18:45 bus to Pulborough for a smooth train connection back to London -- made more interesting with the sighting of a vintage train (rumored to be the Orient Express) passing through the station and some provisions for the journey back .....All in all, a good day out - an interesting and varied walk with culinary delights for all.....