Walk 3 – Ditchling Beacon to Upper Beeding

A misty start from Ditchling Beacon but it soon burnt off and we enjoyed another brilliant day on the Downs
The crest of Newtimber Hill - click to enlarge
Climbing Newtimber Hill

We got off to an early start thanks to Veronica, Alastair and Liz who ferried walkers to the car park at Ditchling Beacon.

It was a bit hazy with mention of thunderstorms and rain warnings in the forecast. But in fact it proved to be a fabulous day with sunshine and a light cooling breeze.

The gentle stroll along the ridge from Ditchling Beacon to Pycombe was accomplished in about an hour.

P1000247c1We made a a brief stop in the 12th Century Church of the Transfiguration at Pycombe (left – as with all photographs on this site you can click on this picture to enlarge it).

And from there we crossed the noisy A23 London to Brighton Road by bridge and were soon climbing up Newtimber Hill.

This is the steepest climb of of what was otherwise a relatively easy day.

But we were urged on by the thought of the the farmyard at Saddlescombe  a mere mile ahead where the excellent Hiker’s Rest cafe awaited.

The excellent Hiker's Rest  is right on the South Downs Way at Saddlescombe
The excellent Hiker’s Rest is right on the South Downs Way at Saddlescombe

Fueled by tea, cakes and light lunches, we stormed up to the Dyke and on over the ridge past Poynings.  We paused to refresh and regroup at the top of the Fulking Escarpment.  But with a bus due to whisk us home in just under an hour’s time at Upper Beeding (and the prospect of an hour’s wait for the next if we missed it) we pressed on past Truleigh Hill and down into the Adur Valley – with excellent views of what lies in store for us next week stretching out before us.

The Adur Valley  with Chanctonbury Ring in the distance
The Adur Valley with Chanctonbury Ring in the distance (click to enlarge)

We all arrived at the Upper Beeding bus stop with minutes to spare though four  people decided they hadn’t yet had enough and walked along the Downslink Trail into Shoreham-by-Sea for a cup of tea, adding a further 3 miles to the ten walked by everyone else.

That is East Sussex finished with – and over a third of the South Downs Way completed.  Next week we walk deep into West Sussex and reach the halfway point.

Walk Details:  Distance walked 10.02 miles, height climbed 983 feet

dbtoUpBeeding profile

Next week –  Walk 4 Upper Beeding to Amberley 

Walk 1  – Eastbourne to Southease
Walk 2 – Southease to Ditchling Beacon