CYCLIST'S GUIDE TO THE SOUTH DOWNS WAY
Going westwards, from Eastbourne to Winchester
For those wanting to travel from east to west, then in essence, my description elsewhere on this site applies, with of course the obvious changes, ‘up’ instead of ‘down’, ‘descent’ instead of ‘climb’, ‘left’ instead of ‘right’ !
However, there will be some places where the route is not so clear, or there is a ‘hazard’ one way, but may not apply the other.
So, I have tried to note the main points rather than a further detailed description; I hope that you will appreciate this.
NB: this page still being completed
Thanks to Ming Locke Jan 2012: start end has changed see below
Just after crossing A259 out of Eastbourne.
Just over brow of Bourne Hill (after golf course)
Further down descent, NB bottom few hundred yards compacted very lumpy brick (?) so very bumpy rough
After climb through woods after Jevington, SDW turns right on narrower path, opens out to field. Finger post hidden in bushes !
Descend Windover Hill towards Alfriston; Firle Beacon in distance. Again after crossing lane, just below photo, SDW between thick hedges, surface tree roots, 'steps' , flint etc.
Another view from Windover towards Alfriston.
After descent from Windover, turn left on lane, then at barn, SDW is bridle way single track path, ; does not say SDW on it. Path leads into Alfriston River Lane (see photo other direction section 10)
Towards Firle Beacon. There is a small car park in the dip ( above Alciston).
Descent from Firle Beacon, quite gradual. After masts, starts to drop down to Southease.
Red Lion pond on right Itford Hill above Southease. SDW goes to right along top of hill in distance (after climb from River Ouse !)
Water tap is other side of A26, in Itford Farm, see my water tap page.
Towards Swanborough Hill above Rodmell for bridge over R.Ouse.
On leaving Southease, at road, turn right,; there is a junction on left, with SDW gate for walkers. For cycle, go along road for 100yds turn left down farm track 'bridlepath', no SDW finger.
From Mill Hill ( just after Southease)
Near Newmarket Hill looking north. See note re gate in photo below. (There is a panorama view [4 photos joined together] at end of my Section '9')
SDW goes through pedestrian gate, then narrow singletrack. Finger post is just 'bridlepath', though gate has a small SDW disc.
The light wood after gate has a short steepish descent.
Also there is a short steep descent through wood at at Bunkershill Plantation, just to north of A27 crossing.
PHOTO below is approaching Ditchling Beacon.
West Hill (after Pyecombe) looking to Devils Dyke. Saddlescombe is in dip.
Similar, track down into Saddlescombe . If coming other way, which side of fence not clear.
8A: Devil’s Dyke to A24 Washington.
Track from Truleigh Hill to A283,
Crossing A 283; go into layby, then path down to side passing water tap; see main page and water tap page.
Going up Annington Hill
After Chanctonbury Ring, then few hundred yards after cattle grid, SDW 90' right; NB: there is also a track which goes straight on and seems more major !
Sharp right bend on loose gravel, steepish, near top of Chanctonbury, soon after right turn in above photo.
About half way down from Chanctonbury Ring, looking across 'A24' valley to Sullington Hill.
View coming down from Chanctonbury Ring; bit difficult to make out landmarks , so arrows are approx location ! I have also offset my 'blue line' for clarity.
Thumbnail of above.
Car park at bottom of descent from Chanctonbury. Bear left at as blue arrow. A24 crossing about 200 yds.
Approaching top of Amberley Mount, looking across R.Arun valley to Bury Hill.
Photo is from other side of trees in above photo, good lunch spot.
Clearer photo taken July 09. (whilst eating sandwiches !)
Thumbnail of above for full size.
Looking down Amberley Mount, NB: steep! (regret hazy conditions, so not clear)
Clearer photo July 09.
At bottom of High Titten Lane. SDW turn 90' right just before road. For water tap, turn left to Houghton. Also, for Amberley railway station.
On leaving car park, take track in direction of masts, but after about 75 yards, take track to left; DO NOT continue on to masts. See PHOTOS below:
Carry on with masts to your north; soon reach grass field (see photo in going east).
View down from Sutton Down across to Littleton Down. A285 in dip out of sight.
Descent has some adverse camber and rain worn cross gullies, which fill with flints; changeable.
The part through field (second arrow from top) is quite steep though still cyclable slowly !
View across to Cocking Down. Again this descent has flints, rain gullies, cambers etc See VIDEO on video page
Full size thumbnail without annotation
After going through the light wooded area following Didling Down, SDW takes a 90’ right turn; there is also a gravel bridlepath carrying straight on (to Hooksway).
Photo below of 'puddle with bricks' , see '3' for more detail etc :Note 2009 now filled in !
There are often several walkers, family groups, as BBQ sites etc on the long gravel gradual descent after Buriton through QEP.
PHOTO looking up Butser; feint red line is a temporary fence for a fair, so not usually there.
PHOTO From car park at top of Butser, clump of trees in distance is Cheesefoot Head near Winchetser.
Photo is right turn on to SDW after the stretch of tarmac after Butser. Left & straight on go to Clanfield.
Photo turn sharp right after Sustainability Centre and old HMS Mercury. Then down Salt Hill as photos following.
Photo below is at top of descent at Salt Hill down to Coombe. View to left to Old Winchester Hill similar to photo below this one. See Panorama and other way too.
Photo below is looking towards Old Winchester Hill from Coombe; SDW climbs diagonal track up to top right.
NB: ROUTE CHANGE MARCH 2009; see link below for revised route. Not lane to Warnford, but left.
BELOW IS SUPERSEDED See my new Meon Valley page. In photo below, turn left. NB: log steps at bottom of descent from Old Winch Hill
The lane going down from Old Winchester Hill to A32 is one car width, but with gentle bends, and due to narrow width, hedges etc, vision of oncoming traffic is impaired and not good, so be prepared to stop suddenly!
Photo below is where after passing through gate after climb up from Whitewool Farm, walkers bear left to Old Winchester Hill, and cyclists bear right (not immediate right) down Hayden lane to A32. NB: new finger post noted April15, pointing 'walkers' & 'bridleway'; much clearer.
View from turning near Old Winchester Hill (as from same place as above) towards Beacon Hill.
At A32, now go straight over instead of turn left. Go 75 yards, left, then 100yds.
Turn right off A32, signed ‘Winchester’. After approx 0.8mile on road to Wheely Down, turn left off road just by barn.
ON ROUTE AGAIN FROM HERE
Photo below is at Milberry Pub. Turn right as arrow, then at end of second arrow, turn left down lane.
After Cheesfoot Head, descent on tarmac to Chilcomb. At Y-junction at end of village, Walkers footpath straight ahead across filed; bike either right or left, prefer right.