A strenuous walk through the Spital Brook valley into Broxbourne Woods National Nature Reserve and an assortment of ancient and wild woods and diverse woodland setting.
24.3 km (15.1 mi), of which 2.0 km (1.2 mi) on tarmac or pavements. Cumulative ascent/descent: 389 m each. For a shorter walk, and an alternative finish in Bayford, see Walk options in the PDF.
|Toughness||6 out of 10|
|OS Maps||OS Landranger Map: 166 (Luton & Hertford) OS Explorer Map: 174 (Epping Forest & Lee Valley). Broxbourne Station, map reference TL 374 072, 7 km south east of Hertford, and 30m above sea level. Bayford Station, map reference TL 315 082, 5 km south of Hertford, and 73m above sea level. Both are in East Hertfordshire.|
After winding its way out of Broxbourne along a canal and through a park, this strenuous walk ascends through the Spital Brook valley into Broxbourne Woods National Nature Reserve, an assortment of varied, ancient and wild woods, serrated by a plethora of streams. A circuitous route linking up separate woods follows age old trails, paths and green lanes through a magnificent and diverse woodland setting. While broadly following a well signposted trail through the Nature Reserve, the walk often diverts from it to take more interesting directions. Most of the distance and the ascent are covered before lunch, but the lunch pub serves food all afternoon, so a leisurely pace is entirely possible.
There are plenty of signed and unsigned paths in the woods, thus following the detailed written directions is essential, and a map and a compass are recommended.
Broxbourne Station is on the Liverpool Street to Cambridge or Hertford East lines with four trains an hour (two on Sundays), journey time between 25 and 34 minutes. It is also serviced by trains from Stratford, with half-hourly services taking from 30 minutes. Trains stop at Tottenham Hale (connect from the Victoria Line).
Bayford Station (an Alternative Ending) is on the Moorgate to Hertford North and Stevenage line (up to 4 trains per hour weekdays, two on weekends), with a journey time from 40 minutes weekdays, 45 minutes on weekends. Currently Broxbourne is within the Oyster Pay-As-You-Go area (but outside the numbered zones), while Bayford is not. A Hertford (All Stations) return ticket covers both stations. This should be the cheapest option for the short walk.
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Out (not a train station)
Back (not a train station)
National Rail: 03457 48 49 50 • Travelline SE (bus times): 0871 200 2233 (12p/min) • TFL (London) : 0343 222 1234
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Full directions for this walk are in a PDF file (link above) which you can print, or download on to a Kindle, tablet, or smartphone.
This is just the introduction. This walk's detailed directions are in a PDF available from wwww.walkingclub.org.uk