A Hop onto Watership Down
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IMPORTANT! - Participation Statement
You MUST complete the Participation Statement, here, in addition to booking your event space before attending an OutdoorLads event. (If you have recently completed this, you do not need to complete it again.)
A late summer hike across the North Wessex Downs with a number of moderate (South East standards) ascents.
It will be a long day at a brisk pace, this event is targeted at those seeking a more challenging day.
Key points of interest:
- Two Iron age forts at the summit of Ladle and Beacon Hill
- A view of "Downton Abbey" (Highclere Castle)
- Burial place of Lord Carnarvon (of 'Tutankhamun's excavation' fame)
- Site of Sir Geoffrey de Haviland first flight
- Sydmonton, location of the estate of Andrew Lloyd Webber.
- Watership Down, setting for Richard Adams Novel
The Down is best known as the setting of the 1978 British animated adventure drama film, based on Richard Adams' 1972 novel. The area is popular with cyclists and walkers, a bridleway (Wayfarer's Walk) runs along the ridge of the Down which lies at the south-eastern edge of the North Wessex Downs Area of Natural Beauty.
We will pass the following points of interest from the Book/Film:
- The Iron Road (Chapter27): "We came upon broad, flat pieces of wood and two great, fixed bars of metal.....this is mens work all right"
- The Combe Bigwig v Fox (Chapter30): "a shallow, dry downland combe....The fox was below them and still some way off"
- Caesar's Belt (Chapter30): "the line is marked by Caesar's Belt, a strip of woodland as straight as the road, narrow indeed but more than three miles long"
- The Beech Hanger (Chapter48): "On the ridge between Hare Warren Down and Watership Down, Doctor Adams stopped the car"
- The Hanger and the Honeycomb (Chapter19): "It consisted almost entirely of well grown beeches...."
- The Pylon Line (Chapter18): "...unnatural humming of a pylon in the summer air... Fiver's assurance that it could do them no harm"
- Nuthanger Farm (Chapter24): "Nuthanger is like a farm in an old tale"
- Watership Down (Chapter18): "You can see the whole world!"
You should have regular experience of walking 15+ miles before signing up to this event.
COVID-19 - IMPORTANT: Please read the following before you sign up to this event:
- Anyone with COVID-19 symptoms, even if they are extremely mild, or who lives or is in a support bubble with someone showing symptoms, is asked not to attend. This is in line with the government’s coronavirus advice.
- All are required to practice social distancing – staying 2m (not 1m) apart at all times, including the lunch stop.
- Unfortunately, there won’t be any planned pub / café stops en route or at the end, and please don’t share sweets or snacks with others – we’re sorry!
- Please bring your own hand sanitising gel for your own use throughout the day. Use of face coverings is at your own choice, but please bring one with you just in case it's needed.
- Each person should only attend one OutdoorLads event a week. (Leaders excepted on events if they are leading.)
- On walks, one person to hold open gates and allow everyone to walk through – so minimising surfaces that multiple people touch.
- Be aware that opportunities for toilet stops may be minimal if facilities are closed.
- Please, please cancel at your earliest opportunity if you are unable to attend or are unwell, so that we can allow others to take up these valuable event spaces.
- Much as it's difficult - no handshakes or hugs!
COVID-19: Participation Statement
OutdoorLads draws your attention to the fact that travelling and being away from home increases the risk of receiving and transmitting Coronavirus, whilst it is present in the UK. You are likely to choose not to participate in OutdoorLads events whilst there is a risk of Coronavirus transmission. However, should you choose to participate in OutdoorLads events whilst the risk is present, you must be aware of and follow the law and government guidelines, both when travelling to and from events as well as when participating in events.
Please note that every person participating should be aware of (and accept) that those members perceived as ‘in charge’ or leading the event are not experts, do not need to be experts, and are not regarded by OutdoorLads, or themselves as experts, but are amateurs with some experience in the event type and who are happy to impart their knowledge. Any advice given should be considered with this in mind by the recipient.
By signing up to and attending an OutdoorLads event, you are confirming that you have read, understood and accept the content of this statement.
Please see our website for more information including an FAQ about our events.
What to bring
Water: bring at least 2 litres
Medicines: if you have any ailments etc.
Rucksack: or any other bag
Footwear: hiking boots or sturdy trainers.
Layered clothing: lets you quickly adapt to changes in the weather and body temperature. Go for a base layer (vest or t-shirt) and a mid layer (a micro fleece or shirt) and in cooler weather add an outer layer (a windproof jacket or thick fleece)
Trousers: ideally not jeans which become heavy and cold in the rain, breathable fabrics are more comfortable and dry and on warm days shorts are OK
Waterproof jacket: breathable fabrics are more comfortable and dry
Hat or cap: stay warm in winter and shaded in summer
Sunglasses: for any sunny day, even in winter
Sun cream: can be useful even on cloudy and winter days
Snacks: bring biscuits, energy bars, gels, bananas, chocolate or dried fruit for example and put them somewhere easy to get hold of
Lunch: bring a packed lunch unless otherwise stated
Food & drink
Bring plenty of food and drink, there are no shops on the route and no shops at Overton station. You will need snacks to maintain energy levels.