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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, 29 September 2018

Saturday Walk – Fleet Circular [New] Note! earlier train time

New Walk – Fleet Circular
Length: 19¼ km (12.0 miles). Toughness: 4/10

10:04 Portsmouth Harbour train from Waterloo (Clapham Jct 10:13), changing at Woking (arr 10:35, dep 10:53) for the Basingstoke train, arriving Fleet at 11:11.

Trains back from Fleet are half-hourly at xx:10 & xx:40. You might have to change at Woking.

Apologies for the very late change to an earlier train, but the National Rail site has only just been updated to show that the fast Poole trains aren't stopping at Fleet on Saturday. There are engineering works beyond Southampton but I'm not impressed that it's taken South Western Railway so long to show the amended timetable.

This new walk starts along the perimeter path around the large pond which you see as the train pulls in to Fleet station, continues through MOD land and a new country park, and returns along the tree-lined Basingstoke Canal. You may encounter some challenges with the military training areas (large areas which were previously accessible have been fenced off); the route skirts around the known problem areas but please read the cautionary notes in the walk's Introduction.

As navigation across large areas with no waymarking is relatively challenging and few people like to rely on the printed directions these days, I've made a GPX track of the route available here (right-click and Save As...). Those of you following the line on a device might in fact find a few others taking a different route in two or three places, as some more interesting (but tricky) alternatives are set out in the printed version. Any feedback on these and other aspects of the directions would be appreciated, as always.

You'll also need to scan the walk notes for details of the four lunchtime pub options. They're a mixed bag so check them out and decide which one you fancy; I've started the walk fairly late so you should pass all four at times when they're serving food.

You can cut out the final 5½ km by taking Bus 10 from outside the Fox & Hounds to Fleet station. These are hourly at xx:09 to 16:09, then 17:24 & 18:47 (last).


Anonymous said...

Thank you, Sean, for this excellent new walk. Amazing weather for a most varied stroll, with the highlights being the English Levada and a lovely canal side pub. I discovered a little known racecourse and found that Fleet Pond is actually a large lake.
I started 20 mins early, but saw no other walkers on my gentle passeggiata in heavenly early autumnal sunshine.

Sean said...

Thanks. My downbeat write-up and SWR's late change of timetable successfully kept the main group down to a cosy six, so with the early bird we can say n=7 on a w=sunny day. I'd actually arranged to meet someone for a pre-walk meander around Fleet Pond so only met up with the others after 2pm at the Windmill. They were kind enough to wait for me so we were never likely to catch up with anyone who'd caught an earlier train.

Lunch at the Windmill was deemed OK but with hindsight an earlier start would have worked better, allowing for a later lunch at the Fox & Hounds at a more reasonable time. With a few minor revisions the walk will be on the site soon as #318.