Total steps: 21
Total steps: 21
Smallgrain picnic area, grid ref: SU 01938 67117
In the furthest corner of the picnic area there are a small set of steps. Head up the steps, past a large tree with a picnic table underneath on your right. Head down another set of steps onto a byway. Turn right onto the byway and head up the hill.
Ignore the two gates either side of the track and carry straight on along the byway, eventually passing through a small wooded area.
Just past the wood, you will see a stile on your left, signposted as a public footpath. Climb over and continue straight down the hill following the track.
At the bottom of the hill, with a small wood in front of you, the track bears round to the left and then to the right, continuing down the hill with the woods on your right.
Turn right onto a grassy path and through a small gate to the right of a larger gate signposted as a public footpath. 20yd further on go through the large metal gate on your left, also signposted as a public footpath. Follow the field edge to the right until you reach a wooden gate. Go through this gate into the church car park; the church will be on your right, turn left and head down the lane.
Once you reach the road (signposted as a no through road), turn right and walk down the road, until you reach South Farm. The road then turns into a track just past the farm and almost immediately forks.
Take the left-hand fork, signposted as a bridleway and follow the path downhill through the woods. Cross the bridge, taking the muddy path that branches right uphill. This path can be very slippery after rain. The path then bears round to the left.
At the T-junction turn left and follow the track with a large lake to your left. The track eventually forks right, then bends round to the right.
As the path starts to bend sharply to the left, you'll reach a large open area, look to your right for a bridleway marker. Following the bridleway marker turn right up a narrow path between two hedges.
Pass through the gate at the end of the path and turn right, continuing uphill towards the Lansdowne Monument ahead. When you reach a pair of large gates pass through the right-hand metal bridle gate and carry on. When you reach the pair of derelict barns on either side of the track continue straight on uphill, following the footpath sign.
At the end of the path turn right, then left, through the gate onto Cherhill Down. Follow the track ahead, keeping the fence to your left. The track will head right away from the fence, passing to the left of a copse of trees. You will see the Cherhill white horse in front of you and the Lansdowne Monument on your right. Keep following the track as it heads towards the monument.
Just before the hill rises, you'll get to a junction of paths and tracks. Turn left through the wooden gate signposted as a bridleway. Then immediately turn right and head towards the gate and interpretation panel. Go through the gate just beyond the interpretation panel and continue uphill with the fence on your right until you reach the Lansdowne Monument.
The track passes to the right of the monument and then forks. Take the left-hand path, following the grassy track through the centre of Oldbury Castle hillfort. The monument should now be directly behind you with the ramparts of the fort curving round on either side.
Pass through the inner and outer ditches of the fort following the chalky track as it bends to the right. At the T-junction, turn right following the White Horse Trail sign. Go through the bridle gate ahead and carry on down the hill following the track. Pass through a second gate, signposted as White Horse Trail and continue downhill.
On the field boundary in front of you, you will see a byway signpost. Pass through the metal gate next to the post and onto the byway. Carry straight on over the byway and carry on along the track with a copse on your right-hand side.
When you reach the T-junction with the A361 in front of you, turn right onto the byway. Carry straight on through the first crossroads, with the Private Farm Road sign on the right and carry straight on up the hill when the main track appears to bear round to the left. At the top of the hill the track then starts to curve round to the left with trees on the right-hand side.
Just before a metal gate on your left the track splits, take the right-hand fork, which dips down into a heavily rutted area. At the bottom of the dip, turn right taking a narrow overgrown path into the trees until your reach a metal gate signposted White Horse Trail. This turning is very obscure and hard to find. If you pass the gate on your left on the main track you have missed it and will need to double back.
Go through the gate and follow a narrow path through, over and along a series of banks and ditches until you dip down into a final ditch and pass through a metal gate signposted Wansdyke Path. The path climbs back onto the right-hand bank and carries on towards the masts of the wireless station you can see ahead. The largest bank should now be on your left.
Dip down into the ditch and through a gate signposted Mid Wilts Way. Head back up onto the right-hand bank and walk along the edge of the ditch with the wireless station on your right. Carry straight on at the crossroads and when you reach the end of the field drop down into the ditch and through the gate signposted Wansdyke Path and Wiltshire Wildlife Trust Nature Reserve.
Climb back up onto the right-hand bank and follow the grassy chalk path as it winds its way through the reserve, roughly following the line of the ditch and bank with the fence on your left. Ignore any paths branching off to the left or the right.
Almost at the end of the reserve you will see a wooden kissing gate on your right. Head down the slope, through the gate and turn left onto the byway. When the path starts heading downhill through a wooded area, take the steps on the left-hand side, signposted Wansdyke Path and follow the path back to the car park.
Smallgrain picnic area, grid ref: SU 01938 67117
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