This was a new route for us circling the back of the Gussages and enjoying an empty path around the ancient tumuli and barrows of the Cranborne Chase. We enjoyed almost every step (read on to discover the bit we didn’t), and we fully intend to repeat this one before long.
(NB – when this route was published in the June issue of the BV magazine there was a problem with the app, and only five images were showing. That has now been fixed, and you can see the full glory of this stunner of a walk)
To follow this route using the Outdooractive App, please find the route here.
We didn’t meet another person, the paths were easy to follow, and though the inclines look alarming on the app they are very gentle on the ground. We had a fabulous few hours taking this one at a very gentle pace, stopping to enjoy the views at every turn.
The route winds around a number of ancient barrows and tumuli
There’s nothing nicer than walking through waist high grasses – this is a section of Ackling Dyke, the Roman road, and it was thick with the sound of insects as we shushed through the grasses.
I never can resist a perfect hedgerow ‘window with a view’
Beware the small bit of super-busy road walking … This is the small road stretch outsode Gussage All Saints. Do look to your right when you reach here, there’s a lovely view across to famous Knowlton Church.
The paths are often straight for long stretches, allowing you to be free of map reading
There is a small car park at the start, but is is NOT where it is shown on the OS map; the farmer has moved it from the side of the field into the natural layby within the strip of woods. It makes total sense, and is conveniently placed – just look out for it. Our route starts where the car park is, so do trust it!
The one issue we had on the whole route was less than a mile into the walk, as we left the tumuli on Wyke Down and approached the A354. The path runs between two fields , but it was entirely overgrown and completely impassable in June (see above – the image left is the entrance, and the image right is the exit once we’d circumnavigated to the far end)- instead we hopped the fence and walked the parallel edge of the neighbouring field. Not correct, we know, but what else can you do when the bramble and nettles are shoulder high?
Apart from that, the route is clear, easy to follow and just gorgeous walking, taking in part of the ancient route along Ackling Dyke.
All the Dorset Walks we feature have been created and walked recently by ourselves, so you know you can trust them – we aim for unpopulated routes with as little road and as many views as possible! You can always see the route and follow it yourself via the free Outdoor Active app – see all our routes here.