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This Week's Walks - Archive

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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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Tuesday, 12 September 2017

Woburn Abbey - and a free peek at its Safari Park

Book 1, Walk 17 - Bow Brickhill to Woburn Sands

Length: 18.7 km (11.6 miles)
Toughness: 6 out of 10

London Euston: 10-13 hrs   Birmingham New Street service
Arrive Bletchley: 10-49 hrs
Leave Bletchley: 11-01 hrs  Bedford service
Arrive Bow Brickhill: 11-08 hrs.

Return: Woburn Sands to Euston via Bletchley: 15-26, 16-26, 17-12 and 18-12 hrs
Return Aspley Guise to Euston via Bletchley: 3 mins before Woburn Sands

Rail ticket: buy a day return to Woburn Sands

Shortly after leaving Bow Brickhill station you find yourselves in Back Wood. Recent walkers on today's sister walk - Bow Brickhill to Leighton Buzzard (coming up for mid-week walkers on Wednesday 25 October)  report the paths through the wood which were badly churned up by forestry work last year are passable, which is good news. But if we have a wet early autumn progress through the wood might be hard work.
After the wood you walk through a golf course and across country to Woburn, where you stop for lunch. A favourite with SWC walkers is the Black Horse, a gastro pub, although I prefer the more homely Bell Hotel and Inn, further down the Bedford Street.
After lunch you walk through Woburn Park, with its herds of deer. You can detour to Woburn Abbey if you wish, but unless you plan to visit the Abbey, it is a long diversion and its easiest to retrace your steps before continuing on the walk. At the end of the park you come out at the entrance to Woburn Safari Park. As you won't be in a car, you will not be allowed in ! No matter, Baldrick has devised a cunning plan for you - a public path which runs beside the perimeter of the Safari Park, allowing free peeks at the residents (bison, zebra, buck, elephants, giraffe, wallabies and more).
Leaving Woburn Park you walk through the village of Aspley Guise, where if you wish you can end your walk at its station. But I usually continue on to Woburn Sands (although I have yet to discover its beach) for tea at the Station Hotel, next to the small railway station.
Walk directions here: L=1.17


PeteB said...

for any newcomers to this fine walk the public right of way takes you past the fairly new Indian elephant enclosure so with any luck you should be able to get a rare SWC elephant photo.

Marcus said...

n=6 on today's walk, w=intermittently-sunny-but-warm-and-no-rain. Paths through Back Wood were fine (some remedial work after last year's tree felling and demolition of paths having taken place) and mud levels nil to low. Onwards then into Woburn Golf Course and by Charle Wood to Woburn, where 4 of us enjoyed an excellent, good value lunch at the Bell Inn.
The sun came out again as we progressed through Woburn Park, where some fierce looking stags sun bathed in and around a pond. Further into the Park we came to the entrance to the Safari Park and its inhabitants (Asian and African elephants, rhino, buck, giraffe, zebra, wallabies and more) observed us walking along the public path next to their homes. I hope they enjoyed the view.
On reaching Aspley Guise one of us made straight for the railway station to catch the 16-23 hrs train, leaving the five to head for Woburn Sands and tea at the Station Hotel, before we caught the on-time 17-12 hrs train back to London via Bletchley.
A fine walk and lovely day on the glorious side of glorious.