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24-Aug-08 • stuleeds on Flickr

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24-Aug-08 • stuleeds on Flickr

boxhill swcwalks book1 walk49 walkicon

Book 1 Walk 49 Boxhill to Leatherhead

The William 1V Mickleham. (Alternative lunch stop but you have some steep steps to climb!). David A. Vivitar 5199 mp

23-Aug-07 • magyardave2002 on Flickr

book1 swcwalks walk49

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24-Aug-08 • stuleeds on Flickr

book1 boxhill swcwalks walk49

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24-Aug-08 • stuleeds on Flickr

book1 boxhill swcwalks walk49

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24-Aug-08 • stuleeds on Flickr

book1 boxhill swcwalks walk49

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24-Aug-08 • stuleeds on Flickr

book1 boxhill swcwalks walk49

Box Hill to Leatherhead walk

Short, 2 steep climbs and the view from Box Hill in the morning, and a gentle river valley after lunch

History

This is a list of previous times this walk has been done by the club (since Jan 2010). For more recent events (since April 2015), full details are shown.

Date # Post
Sat, 09-Dec-17 20

Saturday walk - Box Hill to Leatherhead - a traditional pre-Christmas treat

Box Hill to Leatherhead (Book 1, walk 49)
Length: 11.5km (7.1 miles) - but see ** below
Toughness: 7 out of 10

9.31 train from Victoria (9.37 Clapham Junction, 9.59 Sutton) to Box Hill & Westhumble, arriving at 10.21

Buy a day return to Box Hill & Westhumble.

For walk directions click here. For GPX click here.

Back in the early days of the SWC, when the world was young and Saturdays were always sunny, this was a popular outing in the run-up to Christmas. An energetic (there are two big steep hill climbs) but exhilarating morning, including fine views from Box Hill and Juniper Top, takes you Mickleham where the Running Horses is a great place for a festive lunch. After lunch there is just a short walk up the valley (an hour or so at most) to Leatherhead for tea. In short, a perfect outing for the shortest days of the year.

Latterly, as we have become more energetic ourselves, some find this original ending a bit tame, but the walk directions now includes a ** more vigorous afternoon option, which is to loop back through wooded hills to Box Hill station. This is a bit longer than the Leatherhead route but mainly just more hilly. (It could be extended a bit further, map-led, to have tea at Denbies Vineyard, if we can get there before it closes at 4.30pm. It is possible that my good friend Will Emerge may pop up to guide you on this route).

One word of warning about the morning route: as well as two big steep climbs (both on steps), it has one steep and rather treacherous descent to Mickleham. Take care on this: wet leaves on slippy chalk are not a good combination. Whether a less steep route is available on the alternative paths zig-zagging to the right is something a public-spirited person might check out.

The Running Horses is a deservedly popular pub. I have picked a train to get us there early so as to have a better chance of getting fed (and also made a modest booking). The alternative nearby is the not-unpopular King William IV. Otherwise, the Smith & Western, an American-themed restaurant about halfway through the morning (just before you turn inland off the Box Hill escarpment) is not a bad place to eat. It might be a good idea to phone to check availability at these places at the start of the walk.

Leatherhead is not short of tea places. Allow ten to fifteen minutes to walk from the high street to the station. Trains back from here are at 05, 11, 23, 33, 41 and 53 past the hour, the 05 and 33 going to Victoria, the others to Waterloo, with no major difference in travel times.

If you end at Box Hill trains are at 28 past till 18.28, then 19.01 and 01 past, though if you get to Denbies for tea it probably makes more sense to walk to Dorking which has several trains an hour. (Easiest route: walk down the driveway out of the estate, then veer right just after the railway bridge to shadow the main road to a roundabout, then keep ahead on pavements until the station entrance appears on the left: about 25 minutes walking: doable in the dark). T=1.49
I can't make it on Saturday but yes, there is a less steep descent (see warning in 3rd para) when you get to the byway (Stane Street) tuen right instead of straight on down the hill. After about 400m there's a bridleway descending sharp left diagonally (not the first footpath after about 150m). This passes a prominent wrecked car and then emerges in Mickleham near the William IV.
It's fairly clear on the 25 000 scale map
Or for an even less steep descent than the one by the wrecked car. Stay on the path up to the ridge of White Hill, bear left on open ground at the top to find the trig point. Then continue ahead on a grass path to reenter the woods to join Stain Street. Turn right for a few yards and then turn left down a broad track with a fence on your right. This is a gentle descent, at the bottom turn left along a broad track with a wall on your right and then take the first right down to the King Billy IV
20 on this walk on a gorgeous sunny day perfect winter walking weather. A fairly cracking pace was set almost no stopping for the views. The ground was largely crisp and hard. The two big hill climbs were even bigger than remembered: though short in miles this walk gives you a good workout.

Four of us experimented with a gentler descent to Mickleham the one described by Sandy, so thanks for that. It worked fairly well but was still a bit slippy in places: one person lost their footing, though no damage was done.

Eight (or nine) lunched at the Running Horses, where a table had been booked. We had a lovely table under a glass roof with the blue sky above. The service was a little snooty twas ever thus at this establishment but the food delicious, apart, apparently, from the soup. I think some others lunched in the William IV. After lunch most went on to Leatherhead, even though it was very early, the Christmas market being one attraction. Four of us did the loop back towards Box Hill station, diverting to Denbies Vineyard and its self service restaurant for tea at the end and getting there at 3.15. We then walked in the gathering dusk to get a 4.26 train from Dorking.

Sat, 10-Dec-16 10

Saturday First Walk - a pre-Christmas favourite

Book 1 Walk 49 - Box Hill to Leatherhead
Length: 11.5km (7.1 miles)
Toughness: 7 out of 10: two steep climbs and one steep descent

10.31 train from Victoria (10.37 Clapham Junction, 10.59 Sutton) to Box Hill & Westhumble, arriving 11.21

You can also catch the 10.24 from Waterloo to Epsom, arriving 10.57, picking up the above train there at 11.09.

(Hopefully the Victoria train will not be disrupted by the current union work to rule, but if it is get any train to Clapham Junction. From there there is a South West trains service to Dorking at 11.03, arriving 11.43. Come out the station, go down the station approach, turn right up the main road, and walk for about 500 metres to get to Denbies Wine Estate on the left: at the far end of this turn right to join the North Downs Way, cross the Stepping Stones (or bridge) over the River Mole and join the walk directions in paragraph 8.)

For walk directions click here.

In the old Book 1 rota days this walk was a well-beloved pre-Christmas ritual. It is not long but packs plenty of climbing and fine views into its morning, including the popular climb up Box Hill.

For lunch there is a choice of two pubs in Mickleham, the posh but well-worth it Running Horses or the slightly more bohemian but equally excellent King William IV. Both are very popular and both are worth ringing to try and reserve a table. If both are full, you could try the earlier option of the Smith and Western Bar and Grill.

After Mickleham it is a short and gentle walk to Leatherhead, where the usual high street tea options await. It is a fairly ordinary place, but in the dark with the Christmas lights on usually manages to look quite cheery.

Trains back from Leatherhead are plentiful and you have a choice between Southern ones to Victoria and South Western ones to Waterloo. The Victoria ones are at 05 and 33 past and the Waterloo ones at 11, 23, 41 and 53: all of them take around 45 minutes and all of them, as far as I know, stop at Clapham Junction.
10 approx cloudy but dry

A pleasant walk in good company. Good lunch at The King William IV. Tea in Leatherhead for some.
Sun, 13-Dec-15 10

Sunday Walk 1 – Two steep hills and the Mole valley

Book 1 Walk 49 – Box Hill to Leatherhead
Length: 11.5 km (7.1 miles). Toughness: 7/10

10:10 Dorking train from Victoria, calling at Clapham Junction (10:18) and lots of other south London stations, and arriving Box Hill & Westhumble at 11:06. Buy a day return to Box Hill.

There are four trains an hour back from Leatherhead: to Waterloo at 15 & 45 minutes past, and Victoria at 23 & 53 minutes past.

This Book 1 walk hasn't had a Sunday posting for nearly four years, so is overdue another outing. The morning route includes two steep climbs up Box Hill and then White Hill (both of which could be slippery), but even so I'd have said that overall it's no tougher than the average 5/10 walk. Unless you do the variation mentioned below, the afternoon is a short and easy stroll along the Mole valley.

In theory there's a choice of two lunch pubs in Mickleham (the Running Horses and the King William IV), but on a Sunday two weeks before Christmas they're both likely to be very busy. It would be wise to bring some provisions and treat yourself to an extra-large tea (or a late pub lunch) in Leatherhead.

You'll need to bring Book 1 or print the directions from the Walk 49 page. Note that part of the morning route was changed in the latest edition, with a scenic route descending Juniper Top replacing a rather gloomy stretch along the valley floor.

Circular Walk Option: For an alternative afternoon you could loop round through Norbury Park and return to Box Hill station, which has trains to Victoria at 18 & 48 minutes past. You can get tea at the Pilgrim Cycles shop (01306-886958) in the station building and stronger fare at the nearby Stepping Stones pub (01306-889932). Some brief directions for two possible circular routes are at the bottom of the online version. T=1.49
lovely box hill...anyone going ?
Yes I am hoping to be here. Two big hills before lunch is just what the doctor ordered
Does the circular walk option back to Box Hill change the overall distance by much?
The 'Hill option' back to Box Hill station is about the same distance as the standard book route to Leatherhead (but tougher); the 'Valley option' is about 1km shorter.
10 or 11
dry some mist in the morning and brighter later

A scenic and energetic walk and not too much mud. Most took a diversion or two in the morning to Juniper Top and The Gallops before an excellent lunch at the King William IV.

Fortified by lunch, a few took the hill route back to Box Hill Station while others opted for the more leisurely route on to Leatherhead.
10 or 11
dry some mist in the morning and brighter later

A scenic and energetic walk and not too much mud. Most took a diversion or two in the morning to Juniper Top and The Gallops before an excellent lunch at the King William IV.

Fortified by lunch, a few took the hill route back to Box Hill Station while others opted for the more leisurely route on to Leatherhead.
Sat, 22-Nov-14 21 Box Hill to Leatherhead
Wed, 16-Jan-13 Box Hill to Leatherhead
Sat, 12-May-12 Box Hill to Leatherhead
Sun, 08-Jan-12 Box Hill to Leatherhead
Sat, 03-Dec-11 Box Hill to Leatherhead
Sun, 21-Nov-10 Box Hill to Leatherhead
Sat, 20-Mar-10 Box Hill to Leatherhead
Sat, 05-Dec-09 Box Hill to Leatherhead
Sun, 05-Apr-09 Box Hill to Leatherhead
Sat, 29-Nov-08 Box Hill to Leatherhead
Sun, 31-Aug-08 Box Hill to Leatherhead
Sun, 30-Dec-07 Box Hill to Leatherhead
Sat, 08-Dec-07 Box Hill to Leatherhead
Sun, 22-Jul-07 Box Hill to Leatherhead
Fri, 29-Dec-06 Box Hill to Leatherhead
Sat, 09-Dec-06 Box Hill to Leatherhead
Sun, 01-Oct-06 Box Hill to Leatherhead