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Fontmell Downs

Park in the small car park or the lay-by at the top of Spread Eagle Hill.

  1. Fontmell Down

    Go through the gate and follow the broad path out along the ridge.

    Lat:50° 58' 2.9'' N(50.96748°)
    Long:2° 9' 50.3'' W(-2.163964°)
    OS:ST 88582 18687
    w3w: ///royally.settle.backtrack
  2. Fontmell Down

    Go through the gap in the Cross Dykes and follow the path around to the right.

    Lat:50° 57' 52.5'' N(50.964587°)
    Long:2° 10' 6.6'' W(-2.168507°)
    OS:ST 88263 18366
    w3w: ///buckets.strategy.swerving
  3. Fontmell Down

    Shortly after the dykes there is a gate in the fence to your left. Ignore this for now and carry on along the main path.

    Lat:50° 57' 49.3'' N(50.963688°)
    Long:2° 10' 13.4'' W(-2.170397°)
    OS:ST 88130 18266
    w3w: ///chop.repeated.limelight
  4. Fontmell Down

    Where the main path starts to drop down the side of the hill, go through the gate (or over the stile) and into the field on your left.

    Lat:50° 57' 44.6'' N(50.962399°)
    Long:2° 10' 28.7'' W(-2.174644°)
    OS:ST 87831 18124
    w3w: ///version.winter.extensive
  5. Fontmell Down

    The path on the other side of the gate can be a little indistinct, but if you head up towards the trees on the horizon to you right, you should soon pick up a well-trodden track.

    Lat:50° 57' 43.6'' N(50.962124°)
    Long:2° 10' 30'' W(-2.17501°)
    OS:ST 87805 18093
    w3w: ///sport.worlds.befitting
  6. Fontmell Down

    Follow the path up to the trees and then branch off to the left.

    Lat:50° 57' 38.1'' N(50.960596°)
    Long:2° 10' 38.5'' W(-2.177366°)
    OS:ST 87639 17924
    w3w: ///ghost.hazel.adjust
  7. Fontmell Down

    Keep walking parallel to the fence on your left.

    Lat:50° 57' 32.8'' N(50.959103°)
    Long:2° 10' 42.1'' W(-2.178361°)
    OS:ST 87569 17758
    w3w: ///ripe.enveloped.split
  8. Fontmell Down

    Go through the gate on your left at the far side of the hill.

    Lat:50° 57' 30.3'' N(50.958428°)
    Long:2° 10' 39.7'' W(-2.177705°)
    OS:ST 87615 17683
    w3w: ///rooting.drummers.wheat
  9. Fontmell Down

    Follow the path back along the far side of the hill heading to the right of the belt of trees you can see up ahead.

    Lat:50° 57' 35.2'' N(50.959772°)
    Long:2° 10' 27.9'' W(-2.174425°)
    OS:ST 87846 17832
    w3w: ///gushes.presumes.grudges
  10. Fontmell Down

    Go through the gate and follow the path to the other side of the belt of trees.

    Lat:50° 57' 41.3'' N(50.961476°)
    Long:2° 10' 5.8'' W(-2.168289°)
    OS:ST 88277 18020
    w3w: ///stray.earth.submerged
  11. Fontmell Down

    From here you have a choice of routes. The easiest to follow (marked in red) is found by turning right and walking up to the top the ridge keeping roughly parallel to the belt of trees.

    Lat:50° 57' 43'' N(50.961934°)
    Long:2° 10' 4.6'' W(-2.167938°)
    OS:ST 88302 18071
    w3w: ///bulges.richly.chestnuts
  12. Fontmell Down

    When you reach the sheep-fold on your left, you again have a choice. The easiest route (marked in red) is to turn right on to the broad track along the top of the ridge, and follow this back up to the road.

    Lat:50° 57' 45.4'' N(50.9626°)
    Long:2° 10' 11.9'' W(-2.169965°)
    OS:ST 88160 18145
    w3w: ///scrapping.clip.insurers
  13. Fontmell Down

    Go back through the Cross Dykes and keep following the track.

    Lat:50° 57' 49.3'' N(50.963704°)
    Long:2° 10' 6.7'' W(-2.16853°)
    OS:ST 88261 18268
    w3w: ///likening.registers.spades
  14. Fontmell Down

    Go through the gate in the far left-hand corner of the field and on to a path that runs right next to the road.

    Lat:50° 57' 58'' N(50.966113°)
    Long:2° 9' 45.7'' W(-2.162686°)
    OS:ST 88672 18535
    w3w: ///definite.storming.scans
  15. Fontmell Down

    Ear-plugs are recommended, but fortunately this path quickly leads you back to the car park.

    Lat:50° 58' 0.5'' N(50.966811°)
    Long:2° 9' 46.8'' W(-2.162991°)
    OS:ST 88650 18612
    w3w: ///laminated.herbs.middle
  16. Fontmell Down

    One of the problems with the walk along the top of the ridge is the restricted views it gives into Longcombe Bottom. The alternative (marked in green) is to keep straight on when you come out of the belt of trees at point 11, and through a lower gap in the Cross Dykes.

    Lat:50° 57' 48.1'' N(50.963359°)
    Long:2° 10' 2.5'' W(-2.167354°)
    OS:ST 88343 18229
    w3w: ///bleach.reapply.moderated
  17. Fontmell Down

    Look out for another path that runs along the hill from further up the Cross Dykes and ends up running parallel to ours about two metres up the hill to the left. The two paths never seem to meet anywhere obvious, but you need to swap on to this higher path at some point.

    Lat:50° 57' 53.8'' N(50.964941°)
    Long:2° 9' 56.6'' W(-2.165722°)
    OS:ST 88458 18405
    w3w: ///moped.diamond.yachting
  18. Fontmell Down

    As you reach the clump of trees at the far end of the field, you will see a path branching off to the left round the back of the old dew pond. Follow this past the display board, to re-join the main route running next to the main road.

    Lat:50° 57' 57.3'' N(50.965927°)
    Long:2° 9' 45.8'' W(-2.162718°)
    OS:ST 88669 18514
    w3w: ///newly.variation.remover
  19. Fontmell Down

    My preferred alternative (marked in yellow) is to avoid the traffic noise, by carrying straight on at the sheep-fold (point 12) into the long grass.

    Lat:50° 57' 45.7'' N(50.96269°)
    Long:2° 10' 12'' W(-2.169994°)
    OS:ST 88158 18155
    w3w: ///reply.blockage.included
  20. Fontmell Down

    There is no defined track here, but if you keep heading just to the right of the Shaftesbury mobile phone mast you can see on the horizon, you will soon spot a gate in the fence.

    Lat:50° 57' 46.8'' N(50.963013°)
    Long:2° 10' 12.3'' W(-2.170084°)
    OS:ST 88151 18191
    w3w: ///lamplight.mixed.union
  21. Fontmell Down

    Go through this gate (the one we saw at point 3), and turn right to re-join the path we started out on.

    Lat:50° 57' 48'' N(50.96334°)
    Long:2° 10' 12.6'' W(-2.17018°)
    OS:ST 88145 18228
    w3w: ///wizards.amazed.dorms