St Nicholas church, Upper Chute
A second visit to the land of the Chutes (here is a link to the previous one). We parked near the bus stop in Upper Chute and walked past the19th century church of St Nicholas. It is a picturesque building by John Loughborough Pearson and dates from 1872. Unlike the previous walk we ignored a green lane to the right and followed the road up the hill. We left the road where it turned right and continued along a path which led us to the wonderful Causeway, a one-time Roman road.
The Causeway is on a ridge with lovely views of the valley below to the right ...
... and directly opposite.
We turned left along the Causeway - this is the view looking back as we neared some trees.
This one was dead, but it still made a fine sight (I have become much more conscious of the shapes and dramatic valley of trees in the last year or so).
A little further along the Causeway, we turned left and followed a track heading south past New Zealand Farm and then on the edge of woodland to reach Rutherfords Stud. Here we turned right along a track and then left with another lovely valley on our left.
The directions now required us to walk to the right of a large earthwork and then go through two gates to enter Coldridge Wood.
Unfortunately, either we entered the wood at the wrong place or we didn't correctly follow the simple-sounding instructions about navigating the wood. That is to say we were soon lost. And in dense woodland, our phones were of little use in pinpointing our position.
It is now clear that we penetrated way too far into the wood. However, we did spot a field through the trees and we realised that that this must be just beyond the right hand edge of the woods. We took the next path on our right and followed a track just on the edge of the wood. We weren't in the right place, but at least we knew here we were and how to get back to Upper Chute. Reaching an isolated house we followed a track away from the woods and back to Upper Chute.
Conditions: a lovely sunny day.
Distance: 4.5 miles officially, but perhaps a mile longer.
From: 100 walks in Wiltshire. This is the second time we have gone astray with a walk from this book. We are beginning to think that the instructions and sketch maps are insufficiently detailed.
Map: Explorer 131 (Romsey & Andover)
Rating: four stars. An enjoyable walk notwithstanding our struggles.