Good Friday was a perfect day for a Cheeky Walk, the first proper sunny day of the year. We opted for ‘Bottoms Up’, an innuendo-laden tour of Stanmer Park and Ditchling Beacon – ‘bottom’ being a common Sussex place name. This was also the first time when we got lost.
One of the directions was via a carved tree-trunk. We missed it the first time past, because a couple of people were sat covering the carving. It didn’t help that I also missed one of the sentences in the directions. We retraced our steps and met a famous dog, who turned out to be half shitzu and half poodle – meaning it was either a zoodle or a shitpu. His owner told us a story about the risks of birdwatching, and how they had once watched a heron, amazed how still it was, only to learn that it was a statue.
We were misled once more by the Keymer Finger Post – it looks as if the field has been re-fenced, as the gate was now in the wrong corner of the field. Still, with the aid of Google maps, we found our way back on course. We also passed close to the route of the Earth, Wind and Fire walk – what a contrast the weather was.
I think this walk was one of my favourites. It was hard work on the legs, but it gave some wonderful views. And it ended with a portable creperie. Despite only being seven miles, it felt a lot longer – perfect for a bank holiday. Now it’s just 28 miles and 6 walks to go.
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