About us ~
Bikes ~
 Videos ~ Gallery ~ SearchLinks

Sussex Scrapbook ~ Wildlife walks throughout the year
Green Man
Saturday 12th February 2011
Bepton - West Dean Woods - Staple Ash Farm - Monkton Farm - The Devil's Jumps - Treyford - Didling - Bepton.
8.5 miles

This morning I managed to fit the newly-arrived saddlebag supports to the new bike, which meant that we could now use the saddlebags for our gear, which in turn meant that we were once more 'expedition ready' and could forget all about using public transport. Woo Hoo!
As we had a bit of a late start and then a 40 mile ride down to Bepton we only had time for a shortish walk, which was a pity, as out of the blue we got blue skies and balmy weather, which sprung us surprisingly, directly into Spring. Our ploddings today started from Bepton churchyard in a carpet of snowdrops and crocuses and became more and more spring-like as the day wore on. The birds are way ahead of us in their belief of the season's change, as they're all consumed by courtship behaviour and the urgent need to breed.
The track from Staple Ash Farm to Monkton Farm was busy with birdwatchers today, as everyone was looking for the elusive Hawfinches. Once again we failed to see them but there's so much more to see in this lovely area than just stupid bloomin' Hawfinches anyway. We don't even care about Hawfinches - we're glad we didn't see them... actually!

A beautiful place to visit while walking the South Downs Way section near Monkton Farm is the Devil's Jumps. This fascinating spot used to be completely covered in trees with no indication at all that it was there, and I discovered it for myself, completely by accident, over 20 years ago. It's now all cleared of timber and is being left to grazing and the deforestation has revealed a magical place with a superb (and previously unseen) view over Beacon Hill and on into Hampshire. Those canny bronze-age people chose the most scenic spots they could find to use as burial places. It must've been wonderful to have had the freedom to be able to do that - no landowners, no planning permission, no constraints at all in an environment that was still very much as it was when the monkeys starting walking upright.

If you park at Bepton church to start this walk, then please give them a donation. Sussex churches need our help.

It's spring already!

An oak settle in Bepton church. They'd love this on Bargain Hunt!

Out of the churchyard and up onto the Downs.


The entrance to West Dean Woods.

Red Kite. We also counted seven Buzzards in the air at the same time.

The Devil's Jumps. A series of five, linear, Bronze Age burial mounds dating back some 3000 years.

A quick view of the Devil's Jumps. A perfect picnic spot, but please take all your rubbish with you.

Some Fallow Deer take flight when they see us coming.

Looking towards The Trundle and Goodwood Racecourse on the horizon.

Descending from the Downs to Treyford.

See an earlier walk of ours in this area.


Take the time to read the countryside code for yourself and please stick to it at all times.