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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, 28 September 2019

Saturday walk - Dorking Circular - Valley views and autumnal woods

Main walk: 18.5km (11.5 miles), with options of 16km (9.9 miles) or 22.8km (14.1 miles)
Toughness: 6 out of 10 T=3.274

9.25 train from Victoria (9.32 Clapham Junction, 9.54 Sutton) to Dorking (arriving 10.21)

You can also get the 9.30 from London Bridge to Redhill, changing there (arriving 10.00. departing 10.13) to Dorking Deepdene, arriving 10.24. Assuming this train is on time, if you walk as quickly as possible up to the station approach for Dorking Main station (it is about 200 metres away), you should intercept the rest of us.

For walk directions click here. For GPX click here. For a map of the route click here.

Buy a day return to Dorking (obviously): slightly cheaper Southern-only tickets are available if you are travelling both ways on the direct Victoria train.

This walk had a Sunday outing in May, but in its purest form has not had a Saturday airing since 2017. It is a perfect autumn walk, with some open views in the morning and some fine wooded country in the afternoon. It is too early for much in the way of autumn colour, but there may be a bit, and this should also be a good walk for fungi and other signs of the season.

On the main walk you have a choice of the Wotton Hatch pub after 4.6 miles or the Stephen Langton after 6 miles. A large group might be advised to split itself between the two.

There is also a shorter 9.9 mile version of the walk, which only takes in the Wotton pub, and a longer 14.1 mile walk which has a different set of lunch options, but which splits off from the main walk route quite early on.

Tea options are not lacking in Dorking (see the walk's home page)

Trains back from Dorking Main are at 07 and 37 past the hour

Trains from Dorking Deepdene to Redhill (for connections to London Bridge) are at 8/11 and 26/27 past the hour


Walker said...

N=31 on this walk, comprising 24 on the direct train from Victoria, 4 to Dorking Deepdene via Redhill, and three late starters. Among the latter were a couple who I told did the long walk and one of our group did too, but the rest of us, as far as I am aware, did the main walk. I did not hear of any doing the short walk, but if such there were, do file a separate report.

It was a pleasant day of w=sun-and-cloud and the ground, while damp, was not at all muddy. The trees are still overwhelmingly green, of course, but there were pleasing bits and pieces of leaf colour. In the woods after Friday Street we also found lots of different species of fungi, with our resident expert pointing out the tiny details that meant the different between sudden death and a delicious meal. My favourite was the stinkhorn, which resembles....but this is a family show, so you will have to Google it.

There was a debate about whether to stop at the Wotton Hatch pub - or rather there was not: I suggested it and everyone ignored me and sailed on past. So we went on to the Stephan Langton which was not at all busy, even rather empty until some other small walking/cycling groups turned up. We all happily ate outside in the sun, while the sandwichistas camped by the pond.

Someone had added lots of steep hills to the woody bit after lunch. The climb up The Nower felt like going up the Matterhorn. Quite a lot of us congregated on the top to enjoy the slivers of view allowed by the trees.

On the way into Dorking we discovered some men picking large bags of hops from ones growing wild by the road. Subliminally inspired by this, no doubt, on arrival in the town centre some went to the pub. I forgot to check in on them later so I don’t know how long they stayed. Myself and nine others ended up in a nice cafe whose name I forgot to check: it had nice cakes and proper china tea pots.

At the station we found the platform crowded, some of our walkers among them, because the 5.07pm train had been cancelled. But the 5.37pm ran on time and deposited us at hideously busy Victoria at 6.30pm. “Too early”, commented one walker, and I agreed, but soon we were parted by the crowd.....

Margaret said...

A couple of us had a discussion about the Tillingbourne Waterfall and how to get there.

It's marked on the OS map on the Wotton Estate on the north slopes of Leith Hill, near Friday Street. The Waterfall itself is on private land but can be seen from a footpath.

This could perhaps be added as an optional detour to the walk directions

I found these directions online

I believe the falls are man made, probably as a water garden in John Evelyn’s day (late 1600’s)

Sean said...

The Tillingbourne Waterfall is indeed man-made; the walk route actually takes you over the water channel that feeds it, on the climb out of Broadmoor. The (rather uninspiring) estate track it's on is about 300-400m off-route from this hamlet and I couldn't find a sensible way of incorporating it into any of the many options on this walk. Also, I didn't think many people would bother to make an out'n'back detour; "worth seeing, but not worth going to see", as Boswell might have said.

Click here for photos of the waterfall and the estate track.