Wednesday 17 August 2011

Cycle ride from Amberley over Wepham Down and Rackham Hill, Sussex

A circular route beginning and ending at Amberley train station, this 15 mile off-road ride takes you up into the South Downs for sweeping views across Sussex. You start the ride with a stiff climb on tarmac, before threading your way south along bridleways across rolling download towards the hamlet of Burpham, where you might be tempted by the boisterous pub. There is another stiff climb out of the village and up into woodland where you head east on a forest trail past frequent Angmering Park Estate signs warning you  not to climb on the log piles.  As you emerge from the trees, you veer north towards Lower Barpham along an exhilarating path overlooking a very steep hillside. Just before Wepham Down, you head east again across open fields with distant views to the sea and then north to join the South Downs Way. Here, you head west back towards Amberley. From the top of the ridge, you get almost continuous vistas across the bucolic countryside to the north. Near Amberely, you'll see the sixteenth century stately home of Parham on the edge of the woodland below. This rewarding off-road ride is detailed in the Ordnance Survey book of cycle tours in Kent, Surrey and Sussex. 8/10