by Jan Marsden
We managed to squeeze in 6 walks, despite the damp weather of Summer 2012.
The rain joined us halfway through the first walk, on the far side of Pagham Harbour. The colourful sunset and cloud formation, however, helped us forget our damp feet and clothes on the way home. Arundel Park’s views were spectacular too. The vibrant greens , due to our summer rain, painting a picture of the fields below us in the sunlight.
On the next walk we were able to look back in awe at the hills we had trampled across in Arundel. The sight of deer peeping at us through overgrown grasses and a flight of herons landing less that a 100 metres from us were the highlights of the Amberly Brooks walk. The walks from Littlehampton to Bognor mean we have almost completed the coast stretch from Littlehampton to Selsey, and back, about 30 miles (not all in one go of course!) With the tide out it was delight walking in the evening sunlight along the sand and confirmed why many of us love living by the sea.
The end the 2012 summer season of walks took us on the challenge of a longer walk, and set out to find “The Beeches”. We completed a good 6 miles of downland walking on one of the sunniest days of the summer. Whew, did we need that cup of tea at the cafe in Findon! The Beeches is patch of wood just off the South Downs Way path above Steyning, planted in 1969, by the West Sussex Federation of WI’s to celebrate the diamond anniversary of the first WI in West Sussex. What a spot!
Once we had cleared the footpath and the nettles around the seats (yes, we had taken secateurs and scythes!) a wonderful view opened up across the Steyning Bowl. Our picnic lunches went down well, and set us up for the walk back to Cissbury Ring at Findon in the heat of summer.
I would like to reiterate my thanks to those of our members joining me on the walks and indulging me by sharing my passion for the views. Together, we have walked where some of us have not been to before, learnt about the countryside from each other and benefitted from the exercise and company. My thanks go to all those who help with the transport and in particular, to Francis who saved us from climbing a hill when my map reading went awry!
For more photos click here