Den's walk started from Lovedean and was partly on minor roads to avoid some very muddy fields. The rain did not appear but the wind seemed to blow all day. Interesting walk with a variety of woods and fields and a few animals along the way.
A couple of red kites soared above, fallow deer were seen in the distance and skylarks were heard but not seen. The fields didn't seem to be growing anything - the wet weather we have been having for months has put paid to that. Even the livestock farmers are feeling the pinch. However as walkers we were able to reach Hambledon for a well deserved lunch with muddy boots but not muddy socks! Many houses seemed to be pumping out their cellars out but no flood water was visible in the village. The return trip started with a steep uphill road but with excellent views over Hambledon. A beautiful area for our return trip, spolit by barbed wire on stiles in one particular spot on the Monarch's Way. The walk was about 7.1/2 miles in total.
On a somewhat cold and drizzly morning a happy band of 9 walkers left the pub car park heading for the New Lipchis Way footpath, so named because it runs 39 miles from Liphook to Chichester Harbour. Pauline our leader for the day, must have had this in mind when she led us towards the harbour, oops wrong way, fortunately we were soon heading correctly back to Hunston bridge. The view from the bridge looking towards Chichester with the Cathedral in the background was painted in 1828 by JMW Turner. We cheered canoe rowers on as they went under the bridge beneath us. Continuing along the canal path towards the basin where we stopped for a coffee break, some also had a quick look in the new Canal Heritage Centre. By then the rain had settled in to stay so we made our way back, not on the route planned but nevertheless an interesting and easy canal side walk. We were fortunate to have spotted a beautiful deer on the opposite bank at the edge of the water, Mallards pairing up, Moorhens doing what Moorhens do or were they Coots? Swans swimming and even a pair of large Carp swam beside us as we walked along. The passengers keeping dry on the Kingfisher Canal boat waved to us with our hoods and umbrellas up, enjoying nature at its best, seen in the lovely photos taken by Barbara. Just over four miles and we were back at the Spotted Cow for a much needed lunch and a few chocolates.
This walk was led by Tim and Jane and took us from a car park within sight of the Hindhead Tunnel entrance to paths deep in the Devis Punch Bowl. The forecast was cold and windy but fortunately the trees and the Bowl itself gave us some shelter from the wind so conditions were reasonable. The weather stayed good throughout the day except for the last 15 minutes when some rain fell. We had a pleasant walk with not too much mud but we did need to make one or two excursions to avoid damaged footpaths. A visit to Thursley Churchyard was necessary to prove the story of the demise of the Unknown Sailor back in 1786. The churchyard also houses a small building which was a Dame School dating back to the early 1800's. The Dame School was for the children of Thursley who paid a penny a week and an extra penny to be taught manners. We then visited the Three Horseshoes in Thursley village who looked after us very well. After lunch it was a short trip back via 2 tunnels under the A3, completing a walk of around 6.1/4 miles
Another splendid evening at the Barley Mow. Very many thanks to all those of you who came with a raffle prize. The raffle raised £75 for the club funds so many thanks to Marian for doing all the hard work. For Midhurst Footpath Companion members skittling is not a fine art and even good results were achieved by using the wrong arm! However, one team had to win and this was the Boot Team, comprising Barbara, Marion, Peter, Tim, Judy, Jeff and Maureen. Lastly thanks to Denis and John for great work helping to right fallen skittles.
After meeting at The Badger, Jennifer led us to a small car park on Duncton Hill. After walking through woodland on the side of Woolavington Down, we emerged into green pastures and headed towards Teglaze Woods to find a coffee stop. Suitably refreshed we made our way to Crown Tegleaze spotting a few skylarks on the way. Crown Teglaze was once the highest point on the Southdowns Way until someone added Hampshire, with Butser Hill being a mere 15 metres higher. Conditions were wet underfoot but all survived to reach the Badgers pub for an excellent lunch.