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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, 20 October 2018

Saturday walk - Alton Circular - Autumn colours around Selborne

Length: 20.4km (12.7 miles)
Toughess: 4 out of 10: a few hills only

Catch the 9.23 train from Waterloo to Alton, arriving 10.37

If you miss this, get the 9.30 Portsmouth Harbour train and change at Woking (arrive 9.54, depart 10.00)

From Clapham Junction, get the 9.27 Exeter St David's train and change at Woking (arrive 9.45, depart 10.00)

For walk directions click here. For GPX click here.

A positive tsunami of RMT industrial action on South Western Railway is on its way, but this weekend will be free of it, so I am sneaking in with this classic Hampshire circuit. Beyond its literary connections with Gilbert White and Jane Austen, an attraction at this time of year is the extensive areas of woodland before and after Selborne, which hopefully will be showing some autumn tints.

Lunch is at the Selborne Arms, which serves food until 2pm: it is 6.3 miles into the walk, so no shilly-shallying. Other alternatives include the tea room of the Gilbert White Museum (they will let you in without paying the entrance fee if you are only going to the tea room) and possibly the Coffee Room cafe, if that still exists, in the main street of the village.

Mid-afternoon the Rose and Crown pub in Upper Farringdon has re-opened (somewhat to my surprise) and could make a drinks stop. Only the superhuman will get to Cassandra's Cup, the tea room in Chawton, before it closes at 4pm, but the nearby Greyfriar pub ain't that bad a place. The backstop tea option is Costa Coffee in Alton, open till 6pm, and no doubt the town has a pub or two worth visiting.

Those eager to buy "refreshments" for the train might like to know that the Waitrose next to the station stays open till 8pm.

Trains back are at 15 and 44 past the hour. T=2.10


Walker said...

N=14 on this walk on w=a-lovely-warm-sunny-day, given poignancy by the thought that there may well not be another such Saturday before next March.

I guess any walk would have been idyllic on such a day, but this did make a nice autumn outing. Not full colour yet but still some nice tints. A nice variety of scenery.

At lunch we found a nice sunny corner in the garden of the Selborne Arms - until the sun dipped behind the trees, reminding us it was mid October. Service at the bar was.... unfocused. Taking orders took ages, staff drifted off, action was interspersed with bouts of daydreaming. Food then came in random order, the salads being mysteriously left right to the end “because we prioritise hot food.” Next time the smart new cafe attached to the Gilbert White Museum might be attractive.

After lunch the group split up, or we (the salad eaters and I) became detached from it. We caught up with the others near Chawton but then lost them again. After a drink in the Greyfriars we three then set off to do the alternative ending across the fields in the gloaming, watched by a lovely two thirds moon. Its light was not needed today but it held the promise of future night walks. Coming into Alton bare branches were black against the golden afterglow.

Anonymous said...

On today's walk, we noticed an Italian café (Bottega Dei Sapori) on Alton High Street ... open until 5.30pm, but closed on Sundays and Mondays