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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, 25 January 2020

Saturday walk - Eridge to East Grinstead

Length: 17.5km (10.9 miles) or 21.5km (13.4 miles) T=3.109
Toughness: 5 out of 10

10.07 train from London Bridge (10.22 East Croydon) to Bridge, arriving 11.03

Best ticket; The walk author's advice is to buy a day return to East Grinstead. This is apparently a tad more expensive than a day return to Eridge, and, since East Grinstead has barriers and Eridge does not, is more hassle free. If your ticket is checked on board the train on the outward journey, explain you are doing a walk. In extremis, you might get charged a single from Hurst Green (where the lines divide) to Eridge.

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

I know, I know. It is a walk poster's maxim that one should never post Weald walks in winter because they are too muddy. But with South Western Railway apparently locked in a never ending series of major engineering works, ruling out all Waterloo walks, my list of relatively mud-free walks is getting thin. This walk keeps a lot to high ground, and it has not been raining that much recently so ground might be dry: but don't wear trainers.

For lunch you have a choice of the Dorset Arms in Withyham after 4.9 miles or the Anchor Inn in Hartfield 1.5 miles later. The walk then arcs over the hills to descend to Forest Row, where tea options are numerous and include Taffels, open till 5pm, and a Costa Coffee open till 6.30pm.

You then need to get a number 270 or 291 bus to East Grinstead station (12-15 mins) at 16.03, 16.27, 17.04, 17.26, 18.03, 18.38, 18.57, 19.46, 19.52 or 21.14, which connect with trains from East Grinstead at 06 and 36 past.

Extending the walk: 

The standard way to extend this walk is to walk up the old railway line from Forest Row to East Grinstead, a walk of 3.4 miles, which lengthens the walk to 14.3 miles, and which is easily doable in the dark, but a slightly shorter and much more interesting idea is to switch to the East Grinstead Circular (SWC walk 40) at Cansiron Lane: see the instructions at the end of section 7 in the walk directions. This takes you on a fine high route along quiet lanes, before descending across a valley and climbing up to East Grinstead, which has lots of tea options. This route is 13.4 miles from Eridge (a bit less to East Grinstead's tea options, which are about half a mile before the station).

To do this you will need either pages 9-11 of the East Grinstead Circular walk directions or the GPX for the main afternoon route, or you can follow the route on this map.


Gavin said...

Or instead of tea, the real ale micropub, The Open Arms, 51 Railway Approach, East Grinstead RH19 1BT

PeteG said...

Also the excellent Hop Yard Brewing in Forest Row. Craft not real.

PeteG said...

Also the excellent Hop Yard Brewing in Forest Row. Craft not real.

Gavin said...

No cider in Open Arms. However Engine Room excellent for cider, beer and atmosphere.

Walker said...

N=21 on this walk, including one or two newbies, on a w=cloudy day. Was it muddy? Yes and no. For fairly long stretches the paths were remarkably firm, particularly in the woods. But there were the inevitable gloop-fests near gates and stiles. On the whole no more than averagely taxing for a winter walk, though.

Lots of deer fences had been put up mid morning, and at one point we had to cross one by scaling a two metre high ladder of planks put there for the purpose. Some did this with ease and others of us showed our age. The time taken to do the climb inevitably spread the group out.

The Dorset Arms has lots of reserved tables but our resident Stargazer charmed them into giving us a couple of them: around eleven of us ate there. A rather red meat-biased menu (the revolution is coming, guys!...) but efficient service. They even let us order at the bar: a rare treat. I am not sure if any others ate at the Anchor or what the sandwichistas did (bar one, who did join us). Feel free to file a separate report.

Onwards and upwards, into the snow-capped Wealden Alps. Tiny bluebell shoots in the woods. Snowdrops in Withyham churchyard about half out.

At the decision point on Cansiron Lane there was a lot of muttering about Forest Row, but eight held firm and did the longer route into East Grinstead. There was not quite enough daylight left for this, but doing the last climb up into the town in the thickening dark, with mist arising all around, was very atmospheric. The newbies joined us on this leg, which is very game of them.

We rendezvoused (that’s your actual French) with some of the Forest Row finishers in The Crown in old East Grinstead, and had a jolly time before getting the 7.06 train. One also called at the Open Arms and possibly got the 6.36.

Anonymous said...

It is possible to avoid climbing over the deer fence as there is a gate if you go back about 400 metres. At this point instead of going through the big gate (route taken by the group) take the smaller gate to the right of it where there is a footpath marker.

branchline said...

1 sandwicher and 2 pubbers left the Dorset Arms earlier than the others and walked to Forest Row. 3 became 2 at the fishpond – hope that person got to Forest Row OK. Arrived in Forest Row around 5.30 and one person got the bus to E Grinstead . I walked from Forest Row to E G on the cycle track- very dark and very spooky. Got the 7.06 train too.