Walks And Walking – Epping Forest Ambresbury Banks Fort Walking Route
This is a very easy going circular Essex walking route around Epping Forest. From High Beach we headed along The Forest Way up to the outskirts of Copthall Green and then across to Ambresbury Banks Fort to follow the Green Ride back down to the Centenary Way and back to High Beach.
The weather was supposed to be hot today but was looking overcast when we left at 8am so packed my waterproof jacket in the child carrier and laced up my walking boots to set off walking from High Beach opposite the Epping Forest Centre to join The Forest Way path by the small car park just to the right of the tea hut.
We walked along The Forest Way to cross a road and rejoin the path on the other side to wind gently to the next road and signpost for Hatfield Forest on The Forest Way. We then crossed the road to join Woodredon Farm Lane and headed down passed Woodredon House and Farm at the cattle grid. Where the path turns left to the M25 we turned right to now leave The Forest Way at the signpost with a blue marker. We then walked down this track to a signpost with a yellow marker where we then turned left to follow the field around to a small wooden footbridge… covered by nettles.
Have decided on shorts for today I got stung quite badly which taught me a valuable lesson; always where gaiters! We then walked through the Crown Hill Storage units and on to the road where we turned right to walk uphill passed the entrance for The Warren before turning left at the T-juntion and on to the High Road to turn left passed the Ambresbury Banks bus stop to find a log across the road on our right blocking a path down to Ambresbury Banks Fort.
We then found a sign for the fort which showed the original layout of the fort. We then crossed straight through the fort to find the wide and very distinct Green Ride pathway which we were to follow for most of the rest of the walk until we reached the road which we crossed to rejoin the Green Ride and a sign for Jack’s Hill at The Ditches. We continued down the wide path until we reach a very distinct turning on our right where the track naturally bends. We followed this path until a steep uphill climb led us to the road and car park at Golding’s Hill straight over to continue along the wide path of the Green Ride which bends up and down through beautfiful green ferns with a clear blue sky now above us.
We then came to a wide turning on our right and then another to a clearing in the forest. We then turned right at the bottom of the clearing and on to the Centenary Walk which has now become obliterated by mountain bikers who enjoy the steep banks on the outskirts of Loughton Camp. On our left we made out the sign for Loughton Camp but this was off our route so we continued along the myriad of pathways just about maintaining the general direction to then cross the Epping New Road. We then crossed the road and up through the forest opposite to a short steep climb in a small clearing. This isn’t a pathway but has been worn away by walkers as an easiy route up to the forest pathway crossing. We carried straight onwards to some bivouaks made from the trees that have been there for years. We followed this pathway to a wooden fence behind the Epping Forest Centre.
We followed this pathway passed some wodden benches to a bank which we climb and turned right to come out by the Epping Forest Centre car park to turn left and back to where we had parked the car after just under 3 hours and about 8 miles, legs still stinging from the nettles.
For more photographs of this walk please visit: Ambresbury Banks Fort