Boardwalk in Pudmore Pond Area, Thursley Common

SWC Walk 144 Haslemere to Farnham - Thursley Common Extension (Pudmore Pond Extension-within-the-Extension)

25-Feb-17 • thomasgrabow on Flickr

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Gibbet Hill, Northerly Views

SWC Walk 144 Haslemere to Farnham

25-Feb-17 • thomasgrabow on Flickr

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Devil's Punch Bowl and old course of the A3

SWC Walk 144 Haslemere to Farnham

25-Feb-17 • thomasgrabow on Flickr

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Angled Bench at Viewpoint on Shrike Hill, Thursley Common

SWC Walk 144 Haslemere to Farnham - Thursley Common Extension

25-Feb-17 • thomasgrabow on Flickr

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Breach in The Atlantic Wall, Hankley Common

SWC Walk 144 Haslemere to Farnham - Atlantic Wall Extension

25-Feb-17 • thomasgrabow on Flickr

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Part of Waverley Abbey Ruin

SWC Walk 144 Haslemere to Farnham - Waverley Abbey Extension

25-Feb-17 • thomasgrabow on Flickr

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Tree in Coombswell Copse

SWC Walk 144 Haslemere to Farnham

25-Feb-17 • thomasgrabow on Flickr

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Haslemere to Farnham walk

Invall wooded ridge, Temple of the Four Winds, Gibbet Hill, Devil's Punch Bowl, Highcomb Bottom, Thursley & Hankley Commons, Atlantic Wall, River Wey, Waverley Abbey's ruins


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
Wed, 30-Aug-17 8

Heather near Haslemere

SWC Walk 144: Haslemere Circular

Distance: Approximately 15.5 miles or 25 km for those more metrically minded

Difficulty: 7 out of 10

Train: Take the 10:00 AM Portsmouth Harbor train from London Waterloo to arrive at Haslemere at 10:48. Return trains from Haslemere are three or four times an hour until about 22:00. Buy a day return to Haslemere.

The height of heather season seemed the perfect opportunity to explore this particular walk option which has never been done before….. Initially, we will follow the “main route” of walk SWC 144 from Haslemere to Thursley via Gibbet Hill. After lunch, we will then continue along the route to Thursley Common and explore the “extension within the extension” which should -- at this time of year -- be ablaze in purple heather. At the end of the extension, we will then mostly reverse walk the various “short cuts” and “alternate start” back to Halsemere via the Devil’s Punch Bowl (with one little exploratory stretch to avoid repeating the Greensand Way). You can find more information about the walk and download the walk instructions here.

The recommended lunch spot is the lovely community-owned Three Horseshoes (01252 703 268) in Thursely (6.5 miles/10.5 km into the walk) which serves food until 3:00pm. Tea and late afternoon refreshments can be had at the Devil’s Punchbowl Café (2.8 miles/4.5 km from the end of the walk). Further post walk libations can be had at a number of hostelries in Haslemere.

Enjoy the walk!

I did a walk across the heathlands in Haslemere last week and can report the heather is in full bloom and looking fantastic.
Looks wet tomorrow so we plan to shorten it a bit by joining you somewhere around NT cafe / Gibbet Hill and also finishing at NT Punchbowl cafe. J and J
On yet another wet Wednesday, 6 walkers assembled on the platform in Haslemere to explore a new circular variant of this walk (taking advantage of the various options in the instructions) in light rain quickly turning heavier and more persistent requiring a pit stop to don waterproof trousers under the rail bridge...We took the main route up to Gibbet Hill where the views were muted but still expansive all looking quite different dressed in the foliage of high summer (as compared to mid winter when the walk was last done). As we approached the Devil's Punch Bowl the floral highlight of the walk became apparent as the hillsides where covered in heather slightly passed its prime, making a mottled collection of purple and orange hues. Arriving in Thursley (a bit damp) we found 2 others comfortably ensconced in the pub, making for a total of 8 on the walk. After a leisurely lunch we set off in lighter drizzle to explore the extension within the extension and were treated with another wonderfully colorful display of heather and other heathland flora. The route interestingly took us on a boardwalk out over the heart of a very watery looking bog. Heading back to Haslemere we explored an alternate route where we encountered some frisky young bulls and also navigated most of the short cuts backwards to avoid overlap with the outward journey. Somewhere along the way the rain stopped and skies started to clear generating some good views from the various viewpoints on the return leg. Back in Haslemere around 18:00 most headed for the train while two enjoyed a gin and tonic at the nearby railway inn pub and caught the 19:02. All in all an enjoyable day out on an interesting and varied variant of the walk.....
Sat, 25-Feb-17 19

Saturday Walk: Haslemere - Farnham (New Routing, With Options, Fully Written Up) !Now Bigger, Brighter, Better!

A wooded ridge out of town, Invall Wood, Hurt Hill, The Temple of the Four Winds, Gibbet Hill, the Devil’s Punchbowl, Highcomb Bottom heathland valley, Thursley and Hankley Commons, lowland peat bog, The Atlantic Wall, Thursley and Tilford villages, the Wey Valley, Waverley Castle, the North Downs Way into Farnham [Walk-Check]
Length: 24.0 km (15.0 mi) [longer and shorter walk possible]
Ascent/Descent: 407/470m; Net Walking Time: 5 ½ hours
Toughness: 7/10
Consult the pdf for details of the walk options.
Take the 09.00 Portsmouth Harbour train from Waterloo (09.25 Woking, 09.34 G’ford), arrives Haslemere 09.48.
From Clapham J take the 08.52 stopping service (arrives H’mere 09.45) or the 08.57 fast train to Woking and change there onto the Waterloo train.
Return trains from Farnham are on xx.28 and xx.58, journey time just short of an hour.
Buy a Haslemere return ticket, you then may have to buy a separate Farnham – Woking single.

The route leads out of Haslemere in a northerly direction along the quietest and shortest possible route to ascend through Coombswell Copse and along the wooded Invall ridge up to Hurt Hill and the Temple of the Four Winds, the ruin of an early 20th century belvedere, and one of several viewpoints with striking vistas. Turn westerly up to Gibbet Hill (the second highest top in Surrey), with more far reaching views, out to the North Downs and London, as well as back to Black Down and to the South Downs.
Skirt around the Devil’s Punchbowl along the course of the old A3 and descend into the remote Highcomb Bottom, a stunning sandy heathland valley to re-join the Greensand Way to Thursley.
Its common (a NNR) is one of the largest heathlands as well as one of the last lowland peat bogs in southern Britain and an optional extension gives you prolonged exposure to it. Next up is Hankley Common, another large heathland, and mostly MOD terrain, for an exploration of a D-Day training site with a replica section of The Atlantic Wall and assorted other defensive structures. On to the picturesque village of Tilford with its pub and cricket pitch on the green, followed by quiet woodland paths and lanes along the River Wey’s North Branch into Farnham, with an optional extension past Waverley Abbey House to Waverley Abbey’s ruins along the way.

Lunch: The Three Horseshoes in Thursley (10.5 km/6.5 mi, food to 14.30), or The Duke of Cambridge in Tilford Common (15.9 km/9.9 mi, food to 15.30) or The Barley Mow in Tilford (17.5 km/10.9 mi, food to 14.30). Tea: Tilford Village Shop, The Mulberry, The Lamb or The Waverley Arms.

For summary, map, height profile, walk directions and gpx/kml files click here.T=swc.144
Intend going.
Me 2
19 on this walk, impressive given its 9am train departure, though I hear one went to the wrong platform and ended up on the next train. This is a very "wild" walk for the South East a big range of hills to cross to start and then acres of heath: not that many green fields. One might almost have been in Scotland, especially as the weather was windy with rain late afternoon. It would be a wonderful walk in August when the heather is in flower.

There were lots of walk options, starting just 250 metres from the station and coming thick and fast thereafter. I think we all stuck to the main walk but I confess I was inattentive to the directions for long periods. Some certainly succumbed to extensions and diversions and even extensions to extensions. Interesting to see the "Atlantic Wall" where D Day was practised and I hear that the ruins of Waverley Abbey were worth the 1.5km sidetrack. This is another reason it would be nice to do this walk in summer, when there would be more daylight to take it all in.

Lunch was delayed to the Duke of Cambridge, 10 miles into the walk. It was full to the brim but we squeezed in here and there and eventually parlayed a sizeable table. Nine of us went to the William Cobbet pub in Farnham and had a long and interesting discussion about this and that. I also hobbled on my blisters to Cafe Nero in the High Street for tea.

Wine was drunk on the train home.
Being a bit hungover and so ever so slightly anti social I decided to attempt the afternoon alone with just a GPX track for company, and found the walk very easy to navigate, heavily wooded, tranquil and a balm to the soul in doubled times. Thank you for posting

Would highly recommend walkers follow the extension (to the extension) along the boardwalk out across the marshland on Thursley Common. A very lovely environment to wander through. Might be a nice re post for the longer summer days when the heather is in bloom and the dragonflies in flight.

Lovely day out.
Wonderful walk. Hope to do it again soon.
Sat, 10-Dec-16 15

Saturday Second Walk - Haslemere to Farnham via Devil’s Punch Bowl

Length: 21.8 km (13.6 mi) [cut out 800m by omitting Waverley Abbey]
Ascent/Descent: 301/364m; Net Walking Time: 5 hours
Toughness: 5/10
Take the 09.00 Portsmouth Harbour train from Waterloo (09.25 Woking), arrives Haslemere 09.48.
From Clapham take either the 08.52 stopping service (arrives H’mere 09.45) or the 08.57 to Woking, and change onto the 09.00 Waterloo departure.
Return trains are on xx.28 and xx.58, journey time from 57 mins (shave off a few mins by changing at Woking).
Buy a Haslemere return, but you may have to buy an additional Farnham – Woking single on the way back.
This is a map led walk.
This walk follows the Greensand Way from its start in Haslemere to Hindhead Common and the Devil's Punch Bowl, from where it is a short and easy stroll to the summit of Gibbet Hill (272m), which has fine views and a memorial to a murdered sailor who was waylaid here. The walk then follows the Greensand Way to Thursley, along a ridge of the hill vacated by the A3 (which now runs in a tunnel). The route then crosses the remote Thursley, Hankley and Elstead commons through heather and bracken to lunch in Tilford. You now follow the route of the Book 1 Farnham walk in reverse along a series of forested trails to Waverley, where you can optionally visit the ruined Waverley Abbey, and then along the North Downs Way through a very pretty forested river valley to Farnham.
Elenvenses: The National Trust’s Devil’s Punch Bowl Café (4.1 km/2.6 mi).
Lunch: The Duke of Cambridge in Tilford Common (13.2 km/8.2 mi, food to 15.30) or The Barley Mow (15.1 km/9.4 mi), food to 14.30) in Tilford.
For summary, map, height profile and gpx/kml files click here.
Intend going.
will only come if there are guaranteed and generous stops at Hell's corner for large latte, Countess of Cambridge for some posh luncheon, and a some creamy cakes at the barracks. all this done at my leisurely pace.
That's the idea, although not sure about the 'latte', surely that will just slow you down? how about a Red Bull instead?
15 walkers on this map led walk, in drizzly early and late dry inbetween weather, the routing of which we immediately agreed to amend, trying to avoid some of the tarmac heavy stretches. So through Haslemere to connect to the Greensand Way as quickly as possible, then up onto Hindhead Common. The 4 fast walkers had already taken a wrong turning by then and were not seen again (they got to Farnham in tine for the 14.58 train, apparently, so God knows what route they took).
The rest of the group then stopped at the Devil's Bowl Cafe for the promised elenvenses and were surprised to get some views into the Bowl after the break, as the clouds had lifted sufficiently. Follow the old course of the A3 around the Bowl and descend to Thursley, where most of us then avoided the long tarmac lane through the village, and instead took the alternative, and longer, field boundary route.
2 had been ahead and followed the tarmac to then dive into the 3 Horseshoes for 'aperitifs'.
On through Hankley Common (how nice!) to Tilford Common and the Duke of Cambridge (only tables outside available), so after some debate, on we moved to the Barley Mow on the green in Tilford in a great setting (think Lurgashall with a bit more traffic) and a lovely and fast lunch.
Just a bit more walking left to deal with, for 5 of us including the out and back to Waverley Abbey (always worth a detour, methinks), and the North Downs Way route into Farnham rather than the gpx prescribed through the town route and then a drink for 6 of us at either the Waverley Arms or the Mulberry.
A very nice route, if a bit heavy on tarmac, some of which could probably be tweaked out. 3 good pubs en route. What's not to like? Will be great in better weather and with views, or when the heather is at its best. 24 km walked. 17.28 train for the last of us.

c.14? with light rain in the morning and surprisingly dry sky the rest of the day.

Great walk not quite at a leisurely pace but TG kept the group together, as far as people wanted to (there were the usual runaways) and his promise: we had teas/coffees and mince pies in some pristine NT Caff; here we instantly lost c. 4 walkers who do not appreciate the occasional social stop and refuel; then onwards to the Duchess of C who was having a rest after a stressful morning playing with George and Charlotte, so we went to the miao miao which, contrary to its name, had three huge dogs visiting and excellent beers (hearsay) and food, brought at great speed (the only time I actually appreciate speed; it was 2pm mind you). Onwards for the last leg, and at the abbey ruins we lost the head party, TG & Co, while Pete, Jacky, Martin, Caroline & friend decided to head for the station to make it in daylight. Martin, who was reading the instructions backwards and no doubt correctly, stuck to wonderful paths, while Pete & I, following the familiar pink line, aka that trustworthy instrument GPS, headed a slightly more direct way to Farnham station, where I left Pete in the Mulberry Pub, and I ended up with Jacky & co at the tea counter of the station catching the 4.30pm. Thanks TG and all of you all for a lovely day, and the stops!!!

I should like to add that at Pete's (and TG's) suggestion, we diverted from the tarmac heavy gps route and followed the North Downs way after Moor Park into Farnham; and very nice it was.
Wed, 27-Jun-12 Haslemere to Farnham