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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, 21 March 2020

Saturday Walk - The New Forest to the Sea: Brockenhurst to Lymington with or without Extension(s) === NOW ALSO CANCELLED

Covid-19 Pandemic:  The SWC is a self-led walking club, and as always, posted walks are no more than an invitation for people to join a group walk without the guarantee that there will be a group. Walk posters will keep posting walks for as long as walkers turn up for them. For past attendee numbers please check the ‘Walk Reports’ section on the ‘Comments’ tab on this website.
And while being in the outdoors seems generally accepted to be a lower risk environment than staying indoors, for any advice on whether you should travel on public transport, go walking in groups and eat or drink in pubs or cafes, please consult the latest advice from HM Government and its agencies, especially the NHS. 

Length: from 17.7 km (11.0 mi) or 25.1 km/15.6 mi or up to 32.2 km/20.0 mi
Ascent/Descent: from 129/147m
Net Walking Time short walk: ca. 4 hours, Toughness: 3 out of 10
Net Walking Time longest option: ca. 7 hours, Toughness: 6 out of 10

Take the 09.05 Weymouth train from Waterloo (Clapham J 09.12), arrives Brockenhurst 10.37.
Return trains: xx.29 and xx.59 (change Brockenhurst, total journey time 110 minutes).
Buy a Lymington Pier return.

This walk is – for most mortals – a little too short to justify the long train journey. But help is at hand: an improvised, map-led extension (or two) just after the lunch pub (I have – with the walk author’s agreement – added the routes to the webpage for today). The extension leads through Pennington and Keyhaven Marshes to Keyhaven (pub: The Gun Inn), or even out via Hurst Beach to Hurst Castle, then back along the coast to the ‘normal’ walk route. [The return along the coast is the reverse of the start of SWC 62 Lymington – Barton-on-Sea.]

Here’s the blurb for the ‘normal’ walk:
Although a good part of this walk is within the New Forest National Park, there are only occasional encounters with the remote heathland or dense woodland which you might expect. An early section is in fact through the landscaped parkland of a now-demolished country house, Brockenhurst Park, and the walk continues along pleasant broad tracks through Roydon Woods Nature Reserve. Shortly after leaving the woods you come to a possible early lunch stop on the main road between Setley and Battramsley.
The next section includes the walk's one stretch across wide open heathland at Shirley Holms, with fine views across the gorse and heather. After crossing Sway Road, you leave the National Park and the walk becomes less distinctive for a while, past farms and stables with occasional distant glimpses of the Isle of Wight. Eventually you come to the scattered hamlet of Lower Pennington and the alternative lunch pub.
The final section to the attractive sailing resort of Lymington is quite different in character. You walk along raised embankments between mudflats and the coastal marshes of Lymington-Keyhaven Nature Reserve, with magnificent views of the Isle of Wight across the Solent. Now a haven for wildlife, this area was the site of the Lymington Saltworks, the country's leading supplier of sea salt in the 18thC. The industry only ceased (in 1865) when salt could be obtained more cheaply from mines in Cheshire.
At the end of the walk a lucky few might be allowed to sip pink gins at one of the town's exclusive yacht clubs, but there are plenty of other places willing to serve us hoi polloi before the longish train journey home.

All Walk Options’ Walk Option:
You could extend the walk by 1½ km, passing the Walhampton Monument and returning from Lymington Pier instead of the Town station.

Lunch: The Chequers Inn (13.0 km/8.1 mi, food all day) in Lower Pennington.
Tea: Pubs in Lymington. See the webpage or the walk directions pdf for details.

For walk directions, maps, height profiles, photos and gpx/kml files click here. T=swc.226.a


Thomas G said...

For some flavour of the Extension-within-the-Extension, by some happy coincidence it was Christopher Somerville's walk of the week in yesterday's Times:

Anonymous said...

Many thanks to Thomas for not cancelling any of the walks.
Sincerely appreciate all that you do for the club.

Anonymous said...

Yes. Thank you, Thomas. This is not a slight on the schedulers who did cancel as both points of view are valid.

Anonymous said...

Think Thomas is being irresponsible

Thomas G said...

Some strong feelings there, Anonymous at 18:12... Unsurprisingly, I am with the second last comment, to me it is perfectly valid to keep posting walks, as we're dealing with adults who can make up their own mind on whether they want to join or not. We're not an arm of the Nanny State.
But the majority of walk posters disagree (some vehemently so) and so, in the interest of a common SWC approach, this walk is now cancelled as a group walk. I will not cancel other already posted walks until nearer the time though, and then only in light of the situation at the time. Sincere apologies to anyone interested in joining a group walk.
#keepwalking #whatwouldnicholasdo?

Anonymous said...

It's absolutely the right decision for this club not to encourage people to form groups at present. The government's decision to ask everyone to avoid gatherings was based on stark new data released yesterday by Imperial College.

Even with these measures in place, the current data suggests 20,000 deaths will be a "good outcome" compared to the circa 250,000 deaths expected if we do nothing.

We all want to suppress the spread of the COVID-19 virus and protect peoples' health and to support what is going to be a very difficult effort.

Links below to the latest modelling for those who may be interested in reading more. Stay safe and I sincerely hope we will all be out walking again in future.

Summary report:

Full report:

Summary article in the Guardian:

Anonymous said...

Fine, I'll stick to my usual routine of casual encounters on Saturday then. I'm pretty sure that's OK with the guidelines, unless you can point me to the abstinence section?

Anonymous said...

Are there any nature notes, poems that one can post on swc to keep the spirit up

Thomas G said...

for anyone reading this, please post all future covid-19 related comments on the respective part of the Forum (the blue 'Forum' tab at the top has a covid-19 thread). Ta