A dog friendly walk from DogPeople

A dog-friendly walk from DogPeople
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Challock circular via Kings Wood and Eastwell Park (8 moderate)

We parked in Challock Village Hall car park in Blind Lane (off the A251 just South East of its junction with the A252 grid reference TR 0108 5052). Leave the car park at the Challock Memorial Hall end. Turn diagonally left across the playing field aiming for a gap in the hedge opposite by silver birch trees. If games are in progress go round the field! Go through gap to reach pavement along A251. TURN RIGHT along the pavement. CROSS ROAD WITH CARE at 40 mile per hour sign where the pavement switches to opposite side of road. Go ahead past Tollgate Cottage (on opposite side of road). After another 100 metres or so TURN LEFT through metal barrier towards Forestry Commission Forest Office. Pass office on its left hand side then follow main track as it bears first right then left past communications tower on your left hand side.

Follow track down through wood and then as it bears hard right at the bottom of the hill. Just before the track bears hard right again, and as green track joins from the right hand side, GO AHEAD INTO WOOD ON FOOTPATH (we couldn't see a marker). The entrance to the path was by a patch of silver birch trees. Go ahead on the path with more mature beech trees on the left and a field beyond about 100 metres away. Follow path through wood. As the path emerges from the wood pass through 5 bar metal gate to the left hand side of a stable block. CONTINUE AHEAD keeping the stables on your right hand side. Go through the post and rail barrier in front of house (Oathill Farm) , then though another post and rail barrier . CONTINUE AHEAD across metalled drive onto a track. Keep ahead with paddock on your right hand side and post and rail fence on your left.

CONTINUE AHEAD through wooden gate to reach forest cross tracks. CONTINUE AHEAD on stoney track directly opposite. Do not take either the left or right hand turns - or a lesser track forking left ahead. Follow the track uphill at first. As the hill levels out there was a clear area on the left and more mature trees on the right when we walked, then a more open area on both sides. As the path starts to descend CONTINUE AHEAD past a 'no riding' sign on your right hand side and the 'white' walking route signs (from the main Kings Wood car park) on your left. After another 80 metres or so at the bottom of the dip CONTINUE AHEAD on the main track up the opposite side.

The track emerges onto a more major track just as the 'green' walk goes both left and right. CONTINUE MORE-OR-LESS-AHEAD (i.e. if a turn were made it would be left). Just after this point we spotted a fabulous stag on the track and stopped a while to watch him move off into the wood. CONTINUE AHEAD through a post and rail fence with a metal barrier to reach a T-Junction. TURN RIGHT, then after 20 metres, TURN LEFT onto a footpath as indicated by a post with a yellow arrow marker.

As path emerges onto a track TURN RIGHT (don't go ahead on the footpath as marked by the arrow marker as a couple of dog 'unfriendly' stiles lay ahead). After 100 metres or so, at T-Junction, TURN LEFT on track. After a short distance, just beyond a metal barrier, is a minor road. Make sure you have your dog under control well before reaching it (Hamish still had the scent of deer in his nose and thought he'd like to chase a car that went by!). CONTINUE AHEAD past barrier but almost immediately TURN LEFT onto footpath (before road) as marked by a green and white finger post (also marked 'farm no unauthorised vehicles'). CONTINUE AHEAD past farm house and metal railings on your left hand side (Jackets Field). Don't enter field via gate just after the building but CONTINUE AHEAD on green track keeping the field fence on your left hand side. Just after a stile on your left hand side (the second 'unfriendly' stile mentioned above) follow the track as it BEARS RIGHT. Follow the track / path through wood, then slightly downhill to CROSS ROAD - make sure your dog is under control before you reach the road.

CONTINUE AHEAD as indicated by the green and white foot path finger posts to reach a stile with a dog friendly gate. TURN LEFT over stile to follow top edge of field. Go over next stile with dog friendly gate on right hand side. TURN RIGHT downhill towards farm buildings with fence on your right hand side. On a clear day there are excellent view across the Wye Downs, valley and near part of Ashford. CONTINUE AHEAD through gate by barn, then gate opposite and on to metalled track by farm buildings. CONTINUE AHEAD to pass Warren Farm on your right hand side then through wooden gate by bungalow named Humming Birds. Follow track steadily uphill towards A251. As the track bears left near the top a wider range of views are available back along the Stour Valley.

TURN LEFT along A251 for a short distance BUT TAKE CARE keeping close to the left hand side - staying on the verge when possible. After 50 or 60 metres TURN LEFT onto footpath as indicated by a green and white finger post (AE 192). Follow path downhill between hedgerows. CONTINUE AHEAD past Forstal Cottages (whitewashed buildings) through gate into field. CONTINUE AHEAD towards the right hand side of farm buildings opposite (towards church as it comes into view). Cross stile - or use gate (with clever rail locking system) - onto metalled lane towards the church at Boughton Aluph.

Just past the church TURN RIGHT onto the North Downs Way via a metal kissing gate as indicated by a green and white sign. CONTINUE AHEAD keeping the church on your right at first then via another metal kissing gate. Keep to the bottom of the field with a hedge on your left hand side - don't be tempted by the arrow marker by the gate pointing right across the field. CONTINUE AHEAD as the path goes between hedge rows then fences to reach a metalled road.

TURN RIGHT onto road as indicated by a green and white North Downs Way marker (these point in all three directions at this point!). Follow the lane past white washed house towards Boughton Lees. Keep ahead through 30 mph sign and past more houses to reach a staggered cross roads. CONTINUE MORE-OR-LESS AHEAD onto road running along the left hand side of the green (with its cricket field). Follow the pavement to the junction with the A251. CROSS THE ROAD WITH CARE to reach pavement just in front of St Christopher's Church. TURN LEFT along the pavement for a few metres then TURN RIGHT onto North Downs Way footpath via wooden kissing gate (note North Downs Way information board by gate).

Cross field then through another wooden kissing gate. AHEAD across metalled drive, still on North Downs Way, then through another wooden kissing gate. Aim for a finger post more-or-less ahead on brow of the small hill. TURN RIGHT along fence line when you reach the North Downs Way finger post. Go through the next kissing gate to reach a metalled drive close to a metal water tower. TURN RIGHT (don't continue on the North Downs Way) towards Eastwell Park and a T-Junction. Before reaching the T-Junction TURN LEFT onto footpath via a stile (Hamish had no difficulty getting through the stile).

CONTINUE AHEAD (slightly diagonally right) across a wide field aiming towards the remains of an old reservoir on the hill opposite. As the footpath reached a track CONTINUE AHEAD towards a patch of 5 beech trees (with a pile of road stone when we walked). CONTINUE AHEAD, slightly uphill, as a track leaves to the right just after the patch of trees. As you climb good views are available on the right. CONTINUE AHEAD over the brow of the hill - you might spot Challock Church in the bottom right hand corner of the tree line ahead. Pass cattle grid (no fence when we walked) to reach cross-tracks. CONTINUE AHEAD through metal kissing gate besides a 5 bar metal gate. CONTINUE AHEAD downhill to reach a metalled lane. As you reach it a right hand track goes to the church. CONTINUE AHEAD past Challock Manor house on your right hand side and barns on your left.

Follow lane uphill then past school. TURN RIGHT at cross roads into Blind Lane to reach the car park passing a playground road sign on the way.

Copyright Dogpeople Limited 2004.

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