Rollercoaster Mum: A Winter Walk at the Devil's Punch Bowl - A National Trust Great British Walk

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Thursday, 27 March 2014

A Winter Walk at the Devil's Punch Bowl - A National Trust Great British Walk

In the autumn last year we had a fabulous autumn adventure following the Hidden Hindhead trail at the National Trust Devil's Punch Bowl in the Surrey Hills and the girls were keen to go back and follow the other main trail from the car park there. Both trails are really well signposted and there is also a self-guided trail leaflet that you can pick up. If you only have a short time there is another shorter trail called the Sailor's Stroll which covers part of the Hidden Hindhead trail.

So, on about the one and only dry day in the Christmas holidays we escaped the house and whisked ourselves off for a winter walk on the Highcombe Hike. This trail is sightly shorter than Hidden Hindhead at just 2.8 miles but it was a bit muddy and hilly - especially after all the rain and storms we had over Christmas. Some of the pics have been posted before but I wanted to do a whole post on our walk - even if it has been just a tad delayed!

view of National Trust Devil's Punch Bowl, Surrey Hills
We walked a little way through some woodland and then happened on a lovely view  which the girls wanted to take a picture of too.
herd of Exmoor ponies, National Trust Devil's Punch Bowl, Surrey Hills
We emerged out of the trees on to a moorland area and one of the highlights of the walk - discovering the herd of Exmoor ponies that are kept there to help maintain the habitat.
saying hello to Exmoor pony, National Trust Devil's Punch Bowl, Surrey Hills
Saying hello to one of the Exmoor ponies
sunny day at the National Trust Devil's Punch Bowl, Surrey Hills
From up here there was another lovely view and even some blue sky (it didn't last though!)
splashing in puddles, National Trust Devil's Punch Bowl, Surrey Hills
The girls found a puddle with a view! 
trail signs for Highcombe Hike,  National Trust Devil's Punch Bowl, Surrey Hills
Spotting the yellow trail signs was all part of the fun.

electricity pylons, National Trust Devil's Punch Bowl, Surrey Hills
While they were spotting trail signs I was admiring the electricity pylons! We were on a ridge between two valleys and on one side was a line of pylons so we were above them - giving us an interesting perspective.

cleaning up after the storm, National Trust Devil's Punch Bowl, Surrey Hills
There were lots of fallen trees and I think this fire was all part of the clean up after the big storms at Christmas.

Keeper's Cottage, National Trust Devil's Punch Bowl, Surrey Hills
We soon dropped steeply down into the valley and passed the lovely Keeper's Cottage, one of the four or five dwellings in the area. 

time for a snack, Highcombe Hike, National Trust Devil's Punch Bowl, Surrey Hills
We reckoned we were about half way round so it was time for a snack! 

muddy paths, Highcombe Hike,  National Trust Devil's Punch Bowl, Surrey Hills
It was very muddy in places down in the valley! 
tall trees, Highcombe Hike,  National Trust Devil's Punch Bowl, Surrey Hills
The path was like a sunken lane at this point and there were lots of these fabulous tall trees which the girls spent ages playing around. 

green footed trees, tall trees, Highcombe Hike,  National Trust Devil's Punch Bowl, Surrey Hills
Little Miss striding off to check out the green monster feet on the trees in the valley that we came out into after the sunken lane. 
Monster tree feet, tall trees, Highcombe Hike,  National Trust Devil's Punch Bowl, Surrey Hills
They really did look like monster's feet! 
damaged by the storm, Highcombe Hike,  National Trust Devil's Punch Bowl, Surrey Hills
As we left the open valley we went down further into the deeply wooded Highcombe Copse which had lots of storm damage and fallen trees. There was a lot of climbing round trees that had fallen over the path - lots of work for the rangers.

At the top - Highcombe Hike,  National Trust Devil's Punch Bowl, Surrey Hills
After a steep climb out of the wooded valley we emerged back at the car park - Highcombe Hike hiked and off back home for a hot drink after a windy picture at the top.
 Country Kids from Coombe Mill Family Farm Holidays Cornwall 


14 comments:

  1. oh my goodness !! Those ponies !! So adorable ! I would have loved to have bumped into them on a walk :)

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  2. Looks like an amazing place for an adventure!! Such gorgeous photos and those ponies are adorable xx

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  3. Wow what stunning views and beautiful pictures! I love days out like these x #blogclub

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  4. Lovely pictures, there's something about walking through trees after a big storm and witnessing the might power of mother nature. #countrykids

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  5. Wow that is a while ago now and yet if you hadn't said I could have believed it was this week it has been as cold as Christmas here! It does look like a perfect place for a family explore. Thank you for sharing on Country Kids

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  6. Looks fabulous, love the monster feet trees :) #CountryKids

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  7. What an amazingly beautiful place to go for a walk. On my list! #countrykids

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  8. I love your photos! The color is amazing in there and I love the last picture! I miss my sister =(

    #countrykids

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  9. Looks like a lovely walk in the fresh air. National Trust - can't beat their places for a good walk with family :) #CountryKids

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  10. Oooh the Devil's Punch Bowl - that name sounds so exciting! And your pictures are simply stunning. I can't wait till my two are old enough to take on long(ish) walks.

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  11. Sorry for the short comment. I am having real problems logging in and for some reason can't do so on my freefromfairy account!! I love the look for this walk...I wish my two would walk that far!

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  12. What a great day out - I love the monster feet trees, and it looks like there is loads to explore! #countrykids

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  13. I'm glad you managed to find some sun chine in the Christmas holidays - you had more luck than us!! What a beautiful walk, the pictures really show the winter colours, don't they - I love the one of the ponies with the sun reflecting off of them! #blogclub

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