Walks And Walking – Broxbourne Woods NNR Trail Hertfordshire Walking Route
Broxbourne Woods National Nature Reserve comprises of four woods: Bencroft, Broxbourne, Hoddesdonpark and Wormley and all offer perfect forest walking routes. All of the woods are ancient, although recent research suggests the area was Roman (or pre-Roman) agricultural land that was abandoned then re-colonised by trees.
Here are some photos from the walk: Broxbourne Woods NNR Trail
The area’s animal life includes badgers, weasels, grass snakes and Muntjac deer; and the woods are also home to woodpeckers, woodcock, tree creepers, hawfinches, buzzards and sparrowhawks. Twenty-seven species of butterfly have been recorded at the site, including grizzled skippers, white admirals and purple hairstreaks.
Our walk today started at the car park at Bencroft Wood East on White Stubbs Lane where we headed down the track just to the left of the Broxbourne Woods National Nature Reserve (NNR) Trail information board. We then turned left at the main track where we found the signs for The Hertfordshire Way and the Broxbourne NNR pinned to each waymarker. There are plenty of well maintained signposts, bridleways, waymarkers and tracks on this walk which made it very easy to follow.
So, continuing to follow The Hertfordshire Way and Broxbourne Woods NNR signs we walked through the woodland forest until we reached the pathway on our left just before the road which led slightly uphill until we reach White Stubbs Lane where we turned right and walked a short distance to find the signpost on our left on to The Hertfordshire Way (THW) which crosses meadows and several kissing gates following the natural pathway we diagonally crossed the field and through a gap in the hedges where we found a small fenced in pond housing a multitude of geese, ducks and turkeys!
We then turned right on to the road and walked a short distance before turning left back in to meadows to continue along THW and the NNR signs ending up by yet another kissing gate which headed down to a footbridge and dense woodland. We then turned right by a signpost which had 9 options on it and along THW and NNR through a dense pine forest which zig zags, turns and bends until we reach a t-junction of paths where we turned left and up and along the neighbouring Danemead Wood on our right. Entering Danemead Nature Reserve we continued along the main pathway crossing a ford and continued along this track before turning left at the end and up and around to our right until we reached a gate and sign for Hoddesdon Park Wood by Lord Street.
Here we turned left past the East Herts Equestrian Centre and past the pub at Goose Green and a small car park before we found the next NNR and public footpath on our left and through a kissing gate and across meadows at Highfield Farm. We continued to follow the grassy track that kept the forest on our left hand side until we reached a small road past some large farm buildings where we then turned left at the fork to cross more meadows. Following the obvious pathway we then reached Bourne Orchard on our left before entering the Celtic Harmony Camp which is…. basically, just a field. After we found a myriad of signposts we turned left to cross meadowland until we reached the outskirts of Cowheath Wood and continued to follow the Broxbourne Woods NNR signs.
We then entered the dense pine and woodland forest and crossed over another pathway to continue straight down until we found a fork in our path where we turned right until we then reached a footbridge and rejoin the original pathway from earlier back to the car park. Heading uphill through the meadow and kissing gate we crossed the road and entered Elysium House through meadows to turn right at White Stubbs Lane at the very welcome sign for The Woodman country pub and then right again back to the car park opposite Two Model Cottages.
We then drove the 2 minute journey to The Woodman which is a great pub serving local ale and sat in the garden reflecting on our 6 mile, 2 hour walk!