Sussex / UK
One of Uckfield's hidden gems, this secluded and magical oasis camouflages itself so well that you can quite literally drive by without even knowing it exists.
This walk took place on an early spring day, mostly cloudy with patches of blue sky and the occasional warm sun beam. The whole area is a nature reserve and the paths and routes to take are endless, entangling and quite often confusing (we got a little lost).
It’s worth noting that where we parked offered entrances to the reserve at the south of the road. If you’re after the lake (like we were) you’ll find it in the reserve at the north of the road.
This mistake was actually a pleasant surprise as we got lost through a wonderful woodland and discovered a boardwalk through some marshland.
This is a truly family friendly walk and fun for any walking age. The paths are not buggy friendly and the boardwalk is not fenced, so little ones could slip into the muddy marshland. This walk also displays some huge obelisk-like boulders scattered across the area, which seem to spring out of no-where. If your children are like mine and feel the need to climb anything that looks dangerous, be wary as some of these boulders are pretty big and a fall from the top would not be funny.
Our walk started on Rocks road and went in to the south reserve where we discovered winding tracks through the woodland. A number of tracks split off and disappear into other areas of the woodland and we simply followed whichever one looked more fun. The forest offers many a lightsabre, mallet or pirate cutlass as well as the occasional grenade (pine cone), which seem to keep the little ones excited at every turn.
The walk is broken up with open fields, boardwalks and wooden plank bridges. After some time we realised that we were in the wrong reserve, crossed the road and made our way to the northern side.
Once again the northern side offers a myriad of path options but you soon see a glimpse of the lake. As you get closer, it reveals itself like something from an Arthurian tale and it’s calm and tranquility can’t help but make you feel… good.
The path leads slowly around lake, forcing you to climb up steep banks and descend to the water’s edge. It’s point of interest is the largest bolder which sits at the north east of the lake. A tunnel has been carved out of the rock, leading you through to the other side, however if there has been a period of rain (which it had for us) the path may be water logged. But it’s ok because you an climb over it!
The walk continues to offer great woodland trails, scattered boulders and the occasional stunning view of the lake. Spend 30 minutes or 3 hours this was a lovely break in our day.
It really feels like a hidden secret, and it was so quiet. Other people were walking around but it was just really peaceful.
This place has lots of lovely spots to stop for a picnic.