Pete's Walks - Kensworth to Ivinghoe and back (page 1 of 2)

If you are considering walking this route yourself, please see my disclaimer. You may also like to see these notes about the maps.

Google map of the walk

I did this walk of very roughly 15.5 miles on Saturday, 29th August, 2009. It was a slightly shortened version of the Kensworth-Ivinghoe walk I've done two or three times before, and I've marked the short-cuts as alternatives on the map for that route. Rather than repeat too many photos from that walk, I've tried to concentrate here on the new part of the walk, the lengthy short-cut that misses out Totternhoe, but I can't resist repeating some shots from the wonderful path between Ivinghoe and Ashridge.

I set off from home about 9.20am - it was very sunny but there was a stiff breeze and it initially felt surprisingly cool. As usual, I started north-westwards along Common Road, Kensworth, but instead of taking the path on the right by the industrial estate that I usually take to join the quarry path, I carried on along the road. At Isle Of Wight farm the road becomes Isle Of Wight Lane  - it's curious that the name changes here as there is no road junction at this point, until recently I'd assumed the name changed at the junction with Landpark Lane a little earlier. I followed the lane as far as the isolated Down's House, then took a short path on the right that soon met the quarry path. Here I turned left and followed the usual route, crossing the drive to the quarry and a bit further on turning left from the quarry path and making my way to the old car park on Dunstable Downs.

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View to an old section of Kensworth Quarry, from where the path from Isle Of Wight Lane meets the quarry path

Instead of turning right and following the top of the Downs, I started a much bigger short-cut (that would miss out Totternhoe) by walking across the broad grassy area in front of the old car park and taking a path that went half-left, descending the steep slope of the Downs at a steady angle with glorious views ahead. At the foot of the Downs I turned right, following the familiar path along the foot of the slope for maybe a third of a mile, and then turning left along the track on the eastern edge of the London Gliding Club (part of the return route of my Kensworth-Totternhoe walk).

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The path descending Dunstable Downs, with Edlesborough church in the distance

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Further down the path, looking towards Ivinghoe Beacon

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The path along the foot of Dunstable Downs

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The track beside the Gliding Club

At the end of the track I crossed over the main road between Dunstable and Ivinghoe, and continued down Wellhead Road on the far side, heading towards Totternhoe. But after only a hundred yards or so I turned left, taking a bridleway I'd not walked before. This ran through a narrow strip of bushes and long grass - I was surprised to see that there had obviously been a number of cattle here very recently, as there was only a very narrow strip of rough grass for them to eat. The bridleway continued in a straight line for several hundred yards, ending at a corner of Doolittle Lane by Doolittle Mill. The mill, a brick-built windmill no longer with any sails, was surrounded by many mature trees so I wasn't able to get a decent photo of it.

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The bridleway to Doolittle Mill

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Further along the same bridleway

I turned right along the lane, which soon turned sharply left, and continued a quarter of a mile or so to its end at a T-junction. I then took the bridleway that started on the opposite side of the junction, initially a farm track between hedges and fences either side, but further on a wide strip of long grass between recently harvested corn fields. At a bridleway crossroads I turned left, rejoining my usual route to Ivinghoe as I followed School Lane into Eaton Bray.

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Doolittle Lane

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Near the start of the bridleway to Eaton Bray

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Further along the same Bridleway

I followed my usual paths through Eaton Bray and the almost adjacent Edlesborough. From Edlesborough church (which I'd seen from Dunstable Downs earlier) I took the long surfaced bridleway to Ivinghoe Aston, at the foot of Ivinghoe Beacon, and on into Ivinghoe.

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Edlesborough Church

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Near the start of the long bridleway from Edlesborough to Ivinghoe, Ivinghoe Beacon on the left

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The same bridleway, nearer to Ivinghoe

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Pitstone Mill, from Ivinghoe