This 15.3 mile (24.6km) circular walk from Broad Chalke follows paths and the Ox Drove to explore Cranborne Chase. The route passes burial mounds and through areas of woodland. Along the way there are stunning views.
15.3 miles / 24.5 km
5.5 – 6.5 hours
This walk starts from the car park of All Saints Church, Broad Chalke (Grid Ref: SU040253). Please park considerably and check to ensure that no church service is planned.
From the car park turn right onto the minor road, after 50 metres take a footpath on the left that leads across fields besides the River Ebble.
On joining a minor road turn left. After 60 metres take a footpath on the right (Grid Ref: SU046256). Continue across fields to reach Knighton Mill. After passing the mill join a minor road and head east. After 200 metres, as the road sweeps to the left, continue straight on to join a short track leading to a path along the edge of arable fields (Grid Ref: SU053252).
After 1.1km the path goes through a gate and passes farm buildings to join a minor road in Croucheston. Continue along the road in an easterly direction for 350 metres to reach a T-Junction with Croucheston Drove (Grid Ref: SU067253). Turn right and walk south for 250 metres to reach a junction of tracks besides a barn, turn left and start a long gradual ascent on the Croucheston Hollow track (Grid Ref: SU067251).
At a junction of tracks (Grid Ref: SU075241) keep straight on and in a further 450 metres there is an Ordnance Survey Trig Pillar tucked in the hedge (Grid Ref: SU076237). Stay with the track to meet a junction with the Ox Drove (Grid Ref: SU076234) turn right along this ancient byway. Stay with the Ox Drove for 2km ignoring all paths to the right and left to reach a junction of tracks (Grid Ref: SU059231) turn left and follow a track towards Knighton Wood Farm.
After 150 metres the track reaches the edge of the wood, turn right and take a footpath running just inside the woodland. Follow this well-defined path for 2.1km to reach a minor road (Grid Ref: SU046214). Cross and go through a parking area at Vitrell Gate to enter the Woodland Trust access land of Vernditch Chase. Follow a forestry track southwesterly through the woodland for 1.5km to reach a footpath (Grid Ref: SU033209). Turn right and continue through trees to join a hedge-lined route to reach a minor road at Cutler’s Corner (Grid Ref: SU025214). Turn left and follow the road to a crossing of tracks (Grid Ref: SU018211). Continue straight on along the track heading west for 1.3km to reach a minor road. Cross and follow the path through fields around Middle Chase farm to reach the edge of Stonedown Wood (Grid Ref: SU000207).
Follow a path northwesterly along the edge of the woodland to go through Dank Wood Corner and then out onto a track leading to a minor road, the Ox Drove (Grid Ref: ST993216). Turn right on the Ox Drove and head east on this ancient drove for 4.7km to reach a minor road at Hut Farmhouse (Grid Ref: SU038223).
Turn left and walk besides the road for 850 metres to reach Knowle Hill Ordnance Survey trig pillar, located to the right-hand side of the road on the edge of a field (Grid Ref: SU035231). From the trig pillar turn around and walk back along the road for 100 metres to reach a bridleway on the right. Follow this down Knowle Hill for 1.1km to reach a crossing of tracks (Grid Ref: SU029238).
Turn right and follow a track to pass Field Barn. At a fork in the track go right (Grid Ref: SU031244) and follow this track as it descends to reach South Street in Broad Chalke (Grid Ref: SU036253). Turn right and walk through the village to reach a footpath on the left running besides All Saints Church. Head steadily downhill to return to the start point.
A narrative of this walk with pictures, historical information and points of interest can be viewed on my associated Two Dogs and an Awning website.
To follow our walk, you will need Ordnance Survey Outdoor Explorer Map 130 – Salisbury & Stonehenge and OL 118 Shaftesbury & Cranborne Chase.
© Walking Moonraker (2020)
All information on this site is provided free of charge and in good faith and no liability is accepted in respect of damage, loss or injury which might result from it. Walking can be dangerous and is done entirely at your own risk. It is your responsibility to check your route and navigate using a map and compass.