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Walk report 2023 Sept 18

Of slippery slopes and treacherous rabbit holes

Ten walkers left the Caterham Fox on September 18 and headed westwards across Coulsdon Common towards Happy Valley. Much care was needed on the slippery degraded steps down into the valley but all arrived safely. The group traversed the rolling grassland on the far side of the valley and ascended to Leazes Lane. A short walk led to a hidden path down the side of the golf course.

The happy Fox ten

Much care was again needed crossing busy Rook Lane before turning left beside Rook Farm. The group soon arrived at the familiar “Fiveways” signpost at the end of Birchwood Lane and continued straight ahead on to the North Downs way.

Ascending Happy Valley

The newly surfaced bridle path down the scarp slope of the downs beside Park Ham Bowl was easy going, but care was yet again needed after turning left onto Quarry Hangers due to treacherous rabbit holes trapping unwary walkers as enjoyed the stupendous southward views.

The group enjoyed this most scenic part of the walk and reminisced at the spot beside “A Seat for Geoff” from where a dramatic sunset had been viewed some years previously.

The Harrow pub provided refreshment before the return journey started back along the North Downs Way, turning right by historic Willey Park Farm. Dave the Navigator needed his GPS to follow the unsigned right-of-way across the golf course back to Green Lane. Then it was a straight line past the site of the former barracks back to the Fox and dinner, including crumble with double custard.

The Fox-Harrow-Fox route

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