Discover the countryside tucked away amidst the more urban part of the Valley, as the route takes you along the canal, the riverside and passes lakes and through woodland
About the walk
Start point: Basingstoke Canal Centre, Mytchett car park, Mytchett Place Road, Mytchett. SU 893550
Distance: 8 km/ 5 miles
Walk time: 2 hours 30 minutes
Terrain: flat, easy walking on hard surfacing
Rail to Trail: the nearest stations are North Camp and Farnborough North. From North Camp Station exit the station on the opposite side to the ticket office and take the track to the left Sign-posted for Ash Vale Station. Start the walk at point 7.
Along the Basingstoke Canal
- 1. From the car park follow the path to the swing bridge and cross over the canal. Turn right and continue along the towpath past Frimley Lodge Park to the junction with Guildford Road, the first bridge you come to. Turn left, to follow Guildford Road past The Kings Head pub on the right, then cross over the railway bridge and continue down into Frimley Green.
To the River Blackwater
- 2. Turn left to cross through the centre of the Green, then continue into The Hatches. Proceed past Bedford Crescent, bearing left at a dead-end road sign and triangle of grass, onto a signed bridleway to Farnborough North Station.
- 3. Cross the railway line and carry straight on with Frimley Hatches lake on the left. Don't cross the bridge over the A331, bear right then straight on over a smaller bridge across the River Blackwater. This joins the Blackwater Valley Path going south, alongside the river.
Walk alongside the river
- 4. Pass under a railway bridge and then at the next bridge, Coleford Bridge, go under the A331 sliproad. Continue along the path which follows the road round to the left, then go up a set of steps onto the bridge. Keep left on the bridge across the A331 before taking the Blackwater Valley Path south again, on the left past two roundabouts, immediately before the railway.
- 5. Now the path runs south, sometimes beside the river, sometimes through fields, in and out of wet woodland areas. Take the Path off to the right, across a wooden bridge into Gerry's Copse. Then rejoin the Path, which goes under the A331 and immediately over the River Blackwater, it then continues adjacent to A331, past builders' yards, until reaching Lynchford Road roundabout close to North Camp Station.
Back to the start
- 6. At the end of the path turn left and follow the road, go straight across at the crossroads and follow the pedestrian route which goes under the road and comes out opposite North Camp Station and The Old Ford pub. Turn left, across the level crossing and take the track to the left sign-posted for Ash Vale Station.
- 7. At the roundabout go straight across into Carrington Recreation Ground, signed as a recycling facility. Follow the road, which becomes a path, around the edge of the recreation ground, leaving along a track adjacent to the playground which brings you out onto Frimley Road.
- 8. Cross over the road and turn left. Continue along the pavement until you reach a corner shop. Turn immediately right up a track which leads to the canal towpath. On reaching the path turn left and proceed along the towpath, which passes under three bridges, before reaching the canal centre. Cross back over the canal via the swing bridge and return to the car park.