Slow Walk

Distance11.7K  OS Explorer145

Walk for hot, humid day. Plenty of shaded woods & a start along cooling River Wey. Take left outside Godalming Station, then small alleyway straight ahead (as roads turns right) then turn left at church. Over River Wey bridge then under railway bridge, find footpath sharp left.

Footpath runs beside small streams for a while, taking you away from town until meeting River Wey in relative quiet. For half this section path is man made, then dirt track. Public footpath doesn't follow river, veering right toward houses - so keep on the path next to river.

Small climb up to top of embarkment and into Milton Woods. First time I did this walk I missed uphill turn and had to climb up through swamp and bog. Fairly narrow path, watch out for tree roots. Some nice views across River Wey 'valley' to opposite bank.

After ridge walk come down next to big garden on left, path still quite narrow & runs past house onto driveway (path turns to tarmac). Turn right at next big house wall for nice woods. Can take path up right or continue walk in 'valley'. Some bunker remains about half way in.

Don't miss right fork here. Enclosed short section next, between large gardens. Map shows its a bridleway - but wouldn't want to meet any horses along here. After, cross 2 roads carefully & take driveway opposite until coming to path face-on, alongside cottage.

Path leads you slightly downhill on dirt track, passing alongside house & garden on left and woods to the right. Nice expansive views across large cattle fields at bottom. Can either go left or right. Right leads you slightly up and along side field and woods.

Can find shaded spot up in woods for lunch. Seen Dear crossing field here and Red Kites passing over woods. At corner of field head back across field - sometimes cows are here but the fields so big you offer no threat (been chased by cows - & still a bit weary of them)

Once I get to the centre of this field, I feel compelled to do a 360 degree turn. Views looking back feel odd though. After introspection continue toward farm buildings leaving farm and past home owners drive way (with parked cars) onto road, turn left or right for Pub.

Next section is on road pavements but offers some cultural diversions with detours to see St Nicholas Church (its got a bench), the Watts Chapel & Watts Gallery - your boots shouldn't be to muddy. Can take footpath around equestrian centre to get off roads.

After Watts Gallery join the North Downs Way along sandy track then into classic Surrey sunken lanes. At the right time of the year bluebells are in woods to left. At 'junction' leave N.D.W & take footpath left, up past farmhouse & up to the Hogs Back. Path up is narrow.

Look back whilst on climb for views across and beyond Compton. At top can walk along wide but tree enclosed bridleway or find 'unofficial' path alongside working field to right and get access to some great views South and spot where you just walked from.

As I said, great views. Seen a Red Kite being harassed by crows here. Apparently the Kites size is all wing and so crows are bigger & stronger, and as it eats most things will harass a kite to drop what ever it is it's just scavenged. Nature can seem hard at times....

After Henley Fort dirt track reverts to road track. If on track, must be getting some shade, watch out left for start of final field. Pop in and find stone marking the Cornish People's Uprising of 1497. Look it up when you get home, they don't call it human nature for nothing.

Can continue along inside field taking in less glamourise views of urban Guildford and maybe have a sit down. Could start heading downhill to bottom right corner or continue along top to enclosed path with big steps down. Then head into Guildford to end walk with cold drink.

Let the river take the heat out of Summer.
Paths offer a few riverside diversions.
Take your eye off the path - and its a bit of a tumble off the ridge.
Wall guides you into woods.
Get ready for a quick retreat.
You decide - left or right?
Seeing end of walk (up on the Hogs Back) makes you sloooow doooown.
Nice 360 degree view, your the centre of attention.
If your new to walking, be brave (or foolhardy).
'Climb' looks fairly shallow from here.
Start of 'Great View!' section.
Watch the skies...
Views of a different kind of hard nature.
North Downs Way sandy soil makes a poor substitute for the beach.