Length: 16.5km (10.2 miles) - with a longer option of 19km (11.8 miles): see bottom of post
Toughness: 5 out of 10: fairly flat, with a big climb near the end. T=3.09 10.06
train from Victoria (10.13 Clapham Junction
, 10.23 East Croydon
), arriving Pulborough 11.19
But a day return to Amberley
For walk directions
. For GPX
. For map
This is a slight change from my earlier post
(Pulborough Circular), due to the biblical quantities of rain which fell on Monday, with more forecast later in the week, which could have made the Amberley/Pulborough Wild Brooks waterlogged. This replacement walk goes through similar territory, but only skirts the Wild Brooks, rather than going out across them: it should therefore be firm underfoot throughout.
You start with a gentle ascent into an unexpected little area of hills which have fine views to the south of your ultimate destination, the South Downs ridge. This brings you in just 3.4 miles
to the lovely Rising Sun
. In many ways the perfect lunch pub, with characterful interiors and an idyllic garden, if it has one fault it is that it can be a bit slow serving large groups. If the group is big, therefore, some adventurous or public-spirited types might like to carry on 0.9 miles
to the White Horse
in Mare Hill, which also looks to be a perfectly pleasant establishment (and has a garden), but which I have never eaten in, so can't comment on further.
After lunch you skirt the Wild Brooks - a very scenic stretch. In just 2.3 miles
(from Nutbourne: 0.9 miles
from the White Horse) you come to the RSPB Visitor Centre
for the Pulborough Brooks Reserve and its cafe
, where it is hard to resist stopping for a cuppa (and perhaps a cake as "dessert"): if it is not raining, do sit at the outside tables, which have a fine view.
There then follows a woodland section and 3km on a straight road - usually fairly traffic-free - which brings you to the foot of the downs. A magnificent climb follows, up flowery slopes where you may see some early downland butterflies, and then along the top of the ridge, with fine views to the north and south, and down to Amberley. Tea options
in Amberley include the Riverside Tea Rooms
(closing 5pm) near the station and the Amberley Tea Room
(closing 5.10pm: a short diversion into Amberley village, where the Black Horse Inn
is also a possible refreshment stop). Otherwise, the very pleasant Bridge Inn
is conveniently situated right by Amberley station. Trains back
from Amberley are at 17 past
the hour until 21.17
(the last train) LONGER OPTIONS
- If you go to the Amberley Tea Room/Black Horse and if the ground is not too sodden, you could carry on westwards down through the village, out across the water meadows to the River Arun and follow that back round to the left to get to Amberley station. This would only add a mile or so to the walk, in addition to the 1km extra loop to get to Amberley Tea Rooms.
- Alternatively, if you lunch at the Rising Sun, you could swop after lunch to the afternoon of the Billingshurst to Amberley
walk - walk directions here
- start from paragraph 64 on page 4 - GPX here
, map here
. This gives you a slightly longer afternoon route (13.5km/8.4 miles versus 11.1km/6.8 miles) and a longer stretch on the South Downs ridge, giving you a total walk from Pulborough of 19km (11.8 miles).