Pete's Walks- Kensworth and Whipsnade Downs (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.

I did this roughly 6 mile circular walk on Saturday, 26 January 2013. I  just wanted to do a shorter local walk in the snow, before the imminent thaw. The route I followed was my usual one from my home in Kensworth to Whipsnade Downs, returning via Whipsnade and Holywell. It's a walk I've done many times before, though surprisingly when I just checked it appears its eleven months since I last did it.

I think it was about 10.30am when I started off by following Common Road, Kensworth, north-westwards. Just past Old Green End Farm, I took the footpath on the left which crossed a meadow then ran between a hedge and a fence to reach the trees of Whipsnade Heath. Almost immediately I turned right onto another path, which gradually curved left through the trees to reach a path T-junction. Here I turned right, soon passing close to the impressive Witches Beech on my right and staying on the path as it turned left and ran close to a tall metal fence on the right to reach the road to Dunstable Downs.

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Common Road, Kensworth

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The path from Common Road to Whipsnade Heath

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The path from Common Road to Whipsnade Heath

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Whipsnade Heath

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Whipsnade Heath, approaching the road to Dunstable Downs

I crossed the road and took the bridleway opposite, which initially rose slightly uphill with tall hedges either side. Further on the bridleway became a track, dropping slightly downhill to reach a bridleway T-junction, close to a corner of the large common at Whipsnade off to my left. I turned right, following the bridleway along a small valley, soon passing the edge of a mobile home park on my left. Further on the bridleway passed Sallowsprings Wood, before crossing the long drive to Chute Farm and ending at the edge of a huge meadow on top of the eastern end of Whipsnade Downs (all part of Dunstable Downs to most people).

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The bridleway across the Dunstable Downs road

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Near the start of the bridleway from Whipsnade to Whipsnade Downs

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The bridleway from Whipsnade to Whipsnade Downs

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The bridleway from Whipsnade to Whipsnade Downs

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The bridleway approaching Whipsnade Downs

I turned right and walked through some trees along this edge of the huge meadow to reach a kissing gate in the corner. Through this, I turned left and followed the fence of the meadow downhill. Away to my right I could see a number of colourful Paragliders floating over Dunstable Downs. Through another kissing gate, I turned left and started along the long path beside the fence at the bottom of the huge meadow. I was slightly surprised to see a plane towing a glider take off from the London Gliding Club at the foot of the Downs, I hadn't thought anyone would have been doing that in these snowy conditions. A herd of sheep had been walking up and down this path, judging my the huge number of droppings here. It was really pleasant to admire the snowy views out over the Vale of Aylesbury.

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The path along the top of Whipsnade Downs, heading towards Dunstable Downs

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The view towards Totternhoe

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A glider taking off from the London Gliding Club at the foot of Dunstable Downs

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The path along the bottom of the huge meadow on Whipsnade Downs

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The path along the bottom of the huge meadow on Whipsnade Downs

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The path along the bottom of the huge meadow on Whipsnade Downs, with a view towards Ivinghoe Beacon