Hampshire Riding

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  • Hampshire Riding
  • faustus
    Member

    I’m after off road route advice of any kind really, mainly stuff east of A34 in the Watership down/upper Test area I guess, but any tips on particular gems in the area roughly between Andover-Basingstoke-Newbury would be most welcome too. Especially anything that is better as a descent. so I can plan routes to suit. If you have any strava rides that cover it then that’d be good too. Ta.

    Anyone ridden Meon Valley Trail in the last couple of weeks? Wondering if it has turned into a quagmire in the recent rainstorms… Can’t believe it’s now over a year since I last rode on the old railway line!

    Premier Icon brassneck
    Subscriber

    Faustus – most of the drops off Combe/Walbury expect you know. Up past the church is fun in reverse, as is the little bit out of Netherton toward the Linkenholt road.
    Hippenscombe off the causeway is fun, but I’ve broken a few bits of me on it so take it steady now.
    Collingbourne Woods for single track though its a bit of a quagmire at present.

    faustus
    Member

    Thanks brassneck – useful to know some of those, I have been on some but don’t get that way very much. There’s a route in collingbourne woods in a rough ride guide book I have, and wondering if it’s worth the short trip over there (when the weather is better)?

    Sorry, managed to forget to reply!

    Most of my routes arounf here are gravel bike friendly, so nothing all that gnar, I’m afraid. The BW heading almost due south from the Watership Down trig point is a bit of fun, though!

    Premier Icon brassneck
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    The BW heading almost due south from the Watership Down trig point is a bit of fun, though!

    <noted for next Tripster trip, have only ever run past it>

    Collingbourne is well worth a trip in the dry, plenty of nice single track (though the very best bit parallel with the main fire road got logged out). Park at Scots Poor on the Causeway, warm up on the ay down and explore (most obvious bit is hang a left before the fire road gate) .. I’ll maybe have a chance to show you round later in the year, my riding has been erratic of late for a variety of reasons, just a snatched hour here or there, but hoping to pick it up a bit in spring. The gulley down the hill has a few lines in and out and around, but some nice classic singletrack over the other side of the woods too. The Hatchet isn’t too far out either 😉

    I’ve barely headed out for a non-commuting ride since November, but for some inexplicable logic, now it’s ridiculously cold with slippy stuff almost certainly up above ~400 feet around Old Winchester Hill and alike… I’ve been struggling to shake the idea of heading up to the cat4 hills around Warnford on the Gravdal tyre equipped fatbike!

    The only thing that put me off yesterday was seeing someone’s photo from their ride around there, with what looks like several inches of slush on the roads.

    Wunderground temps for the whole area were colder last night and this morning than we’ve had so far, so the slush should be all iced up again, but that will change as the morning progresses. Which makes me think if I’m going to be a nutter and head up there, I need to go soon, while those spikes can grip the iced tarmac…

    Premier Icon frogstomp
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    IMG-20190202-113441

    I was out briefly yesterday (Whitchurch area) and would definitely have liked some spiked tyres! The compacted snow on the back roads was very icy and off-road you had to contend with 4-6inches of thawed and re-frozen icy snow. Looked nice though, and a good workout for the legs!

    By the sounds of it, it’ll be 10 degrees warmer come tomorrow.. so if you want to give it a try, now’s the time!

    Premier Icon cinnamon_girl
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    Blimey! There hasn’t been any snow in my part of Hampshire apart from sleet on Friday afternoon that didn’t settle.

    Anyone know anything about the gleaming new pump track that’s been built by the railway line in Hook?

    Frogstomp, looks ace. I didn’t get put to play in the snow on a bike, sadly. Had just flown back from a week in the US, and snowball fights with the children was more the order of the day! Pub stayed open, though.

    Premier Icon cobrakai
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    Bump.

    So I’m happy with my knowledge of the bridleways between Winch and QE, and m27 up to alton and can loop the area without a map but I’m getting bored.

    I’ve done the SDW a couple of time so know that route well.

    I’ve got a child free weekend and looking at doing a 30/40km loop outside of this area. I’ll drive to the start point If needs be.

    Anyone got any GPX or route suggestions? Devils punch bowl maybe?

    Premier Icon cinnamon_girl
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    Drive to sports centre in Charlton, Andover. Cycle North via The Chutes, Collingbourne Woods, Wexcombe Down etc. Plenty of choice and tracks tended to hold up well in poor weather.

    Premier Icon cobrakai
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    Cheers! I’ll get the OS out!

    Premier Icon cinnamon_girl
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    Shout out if you want some specifics cobrakai although must confess it’s been a long time since I’ve been over that way.

    bartimaeus
    Member

    Kingley Vale and the Southdowns – pub stop at Hooksway and the excellent tea shop in Compton?
    https://www.strava.com/routes/17930346

    Premier Icon cobrakai
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    Collingbourne woods looks like it has potential.

    The Compton loop looks tempting cause I’m working late afternoon so could go straight there afterwards.

    Premier Icon cobrakai
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    Bartimaeus, would you recommend clockwise or anti on that route?

    Premier Icon mattbee
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    I’d go anti clockwise (recognise most of the route) as that should give you some shorter steeper climbs but more long gradual descents. The pub at Hooksway keeps odd hours but does excellent burgers and good beer.

    Premier Icon cobrakai
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    That sounds good mattbee. Is parking ok at that pub? Sorry for a questions!

    Premier Icon mattbee
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    Looks like the start of the loop is at Compton. Small village but there’s a little car park between the village shop/tea room and the pub.

    The pub at Hooksway (Royal Oak) is midway through the ride. It has a big gravel car park. You could do the loop from there.

    Premier Icon cobrakai
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    Thanks Mattbee, looks like Compton is the easiest start point for me.

    bartimaeus
    Member

    I typically start the route in Walderton (there’s a layby there) – near the Barleymow pub – but that’s because I live in Southbourne. Head up over Kingley Vale to the SDW and along to Harting then back via Compton.

    You definitely want to do this route anti-clockwise as the route from Harting down into Compton is lovely… and would make a fine finish to your ride.

    The initial bit of trail alongside the road South from the Harting Car Park is a bit less lovely than it used to be after all the recent tree-felling (the actual trail is fine but it used to be in dense woodland).

    bartimaeus
    Member

    … oh and you don’t have to go up and over Telegraph Hill before heading down into Compton. There’s a BP down to your right instead of the gravel track up Telegraph Hill when you cross the road at Bevis’ Thumb… but I just like that particular descent into Compton, and the view from Telegraph Hill is worth the climb.

    Here’s the route on Veloviewer – which is excellent as it shows you maps, 3d profile, all the strava segments etc.
    https://veloviewer.com/routes/17930346

    Premier Icon brassneck
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    Test Valley Tour ‘Hot’ starting from more or less my house a week Sunday – a decent overview of what the NW Hants valleys and hills (and Collingbourne Woods) have to offer, although of course there’s plenty more to explore .. I do appreciate everyone coming and clearing the brambles out a bit for me though 😉

    Gorrick Test Valley Hot

    Will be doing my pied piper bit with likely 3 boys, although one year on they might well be dropping me on Hippenscombe 🙁

    Said boys also report positively on the Andover/Charlton BMX track if an afternoons diversion is needed by anyone.

    Premier Icon cobrakai
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    Thanks bartimaeus, I used your strava route and plotted in my OS App. That way I can modify the route easier as I go.

    Looking forward to it on Sunday.

    I could have ridden that with you, plus shown you some different options but am marshalling at the southern enduro behind QECP

    I would park at KV , although that car park can get full with walkers on a sunday .

    That route looks good, Brassneck. I’ll be stealing that for my own use!

    Premier Icon cobrakai
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    Maybe another time. I’d normally pop over the back of QE when I have time to myself or at night, but thought I’d give it a miss this weekend!

    Premier Icon cobrakai
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    That was a good ride today thanks. Had to cut a little bit out due to working this afternoon. Lots of friendly happy people out this morning.

    What a weekend, eh?

    Perilously close to the border here.

    Locations anyone?

    Premier Icon brassneck
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    Top one looks like the bit just before Watership Down?? last time I was there though I was 10 miles into the Gibbet to Overton run and frankly views didn’t really stick as I was concentrating on keeping the the breakfast down and trying to breath through all orifices 😀

    Not sure if anyone would mind, but could share a PDF of the Gorrick route .. the woods are guess work without having done it or the arrows up but you’ll get the idea. Do the first obvious bit down , climb back up on singletrack, lash it back down the other side .. you have about 2 weeks before it returns to nature (in parts) I’d guess. Was a good route this year I thought.

    Yep, looking West towards the Down.

    Premier Icon LittleNose
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    What a brilliant thread!
    I’ve read if from front to back, and really enjoyed hearing the journeys people have been on, and the route discussions, and photos are ace!
    I’ve just recently moved to East Hampshire (Petersfield), and just getting my bearings… it seems a fun and very pretty place to be, and so quite on the lanes etc.
    Looking forward to enjoying the thread more, and hopefully providing some photo’s and ride reports myself.

    by Mikey

    *Edit; This was last weekend, but I think this was just over the border into Sussex… does it still count?

    Premier Icon Bez
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    Is that the bit from Idsworth up towards West Harting Down?

    Premier Icon LittleNose
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    it’s looking south onto Compton Down – I was later to be pushing up that hill in the distance

    Premier Icon Bez
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    Ah, of course… same trail, opposite direction; I normally do it the other way round. I thought it didn’t look quite right 🙂

    Premier Icon LittleNose
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    Ah cool, yes. Hadn’t realised the other was was Harting Down – we arrived there from the Chalton direction (Huckswood Lane)… I’ll put my ignorance down to still getting my bearings.

    On a separate note – does anyone have good off road routes for getting out of Petersfield. I don’t mind doing country lanes once clear of the traffic.
    There seems to be lots of paths, but a distinct lack of bridleways for getting out of town. Not sure which paths it might be ok to be ‘cheeky’ on?

    Premier Icon Bez
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    Depends where you’re heading.

    The Causeway (with crappy painted cycle lane becoming a more acceptable separate path) takes you up to QECP.

    Sussex Road (towards South Harting) takes you to Ditcham where you can ride up a barely-used dead end road to the SDW.

    Or you can take Sussex Road and then turn right to Buriton, avoiding Nursted Rocks, and then head up the climb from the pond up through the chalk pits to the back entrance to QECP.

    There is a footpath from Ramshill to Steep (from where you can get to the Hangers) which I’ve done with the kids but it’s maybe a bit cheeky for adults. The other footpaths out of town aren’t massively useful to be honest.

    Premier Icon LittleNose
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    Cheers for the info Bez.
    Going to head Harting way for a scout about I think.

    Premier Icon garage-dweller
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    then head up the climb from the pond up through the chalk pits to the back entrance to QECP.

    That one will warm your legs up nicely!

    At the top of that climb you can also hang a left and join a HCC way-warked loop (little bikes on blue and white signs). It’s a really nice little right hand loop which goes roughly Ditcham, The Harrows, Chalton, QE park and makes a nice little bolt on loop to a ride at QE.

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