Brush Hill & White Leaf Nature Reserve

Chiltern Hills
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Brush Hill & White Leaf Nature Reserve

Distance: 10.8km
Elevation: 201m
Time: 3.25-4.25h

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A perfect Chiltern walk, with stunning views, soaring birds, dense woodland, and a glimpse of the Prime Ministers Country retreat, this trail really does have something for everyone!

Getting there

If driving, use postcode HP27 0RP and park at the Whiteleaf Cross Car Park on Peters Lane. Alternatively, take a train to Princes Risborough and enjoy a 7-minute taxi ride to the trailhead.

About

When to do

April - September

Backcountry Campsites

No

Toilets

No

Family friendly

No

Route Signage

Average

Crowd Levels

Low

Route Type

Circuit


Elevation


Detailed Description

The first part of the trail is a minor detour, but well worth it for the views.

Cross the road near the car park entrance and go through the metal kissing gate immediately in front of you. Turn right, past the information board on your left, and continue until you reach another kissing gate. Pass through this gate and onto Brush Hill. Take some time to enjoy the views for miles around. There is even a small bench if you have time to stop.

Return to the car park via the same trail and start the next part of the journey from the information board. Take the main trail in front of you until you reach a junction of trails after about 80m. Turn right here and follow the Ridgeway Trail, clearly signed with a white acorn, for the next 4.8km.

Along the way admire the splendid views from Whiteleaf Nature Reserve and explore the Neolithic barrow on your left.

Turn left when you reach the Plough at Cadsdon Pub, a lovely place to stop and have lunch! Walk past the pub and along the path on the left for about 50m until you see a clearing in the hedge opposite. Take care crossing the road and resume the trail on the other side. When you reach two wooden gates, choose the gate on the left and continue to follow Ridgeway signs.

After the nature reserve you will pass the Chequers Estate – built in 1565 and the official country residence of Prime Ministers since 1921. The Ridgeway runs alongside its boundary and across its driveway. Keep following signs for the Ridgeway.

When you reach another road, cross carefully and look for the Ridgeway sign on the left. There is also a driveway for Buckmoorend Farm. Walk 50m down the driveway and you will find the small farm shop, a fabulous little place that sells hot and cold drinks, ice cream, snacks, and local produce (open Wednesday – Sunday 10-6).

Pick up the Ridgeway Trail to the left and follow it uphill for about 200m until you come to a junction of trails. This is where, at just over 4.8km, we leave the Ridgeway. Turn right, following the sign for South Bucks Way.

Keep to the main trail, which leads uphill to the left and through the woods. Stay on this trail for almost half a mile. Take a left when you reach the fork and continue until you come to a junction of 5 trails. Take the wide grassy trail immediately to your right, and after about 20m look for the smaller trail on your left marked ‘Public Footpath’. Walk past the stile on the right and stay on this narrow path as it meanders downhill until you reach another fork at the bottom. This is a great viewing area for bluebells in the spring!

Take the left fork at the bottom of the hill and then another left when you reach a T-junction shortly afterwards. Stay on this trail, keeping the fields on your right, as it meanders through the woodland, climbs uphill, and eventually levels out until you reach another fork in the trail. Take the trail to the right, in the direction of the white arrow, straight across the field in front of you. The trail skirts around Dirtywood Farm, then up the driveway to the road. Cross this road and enter the driveway directly opposite for Solinger Farm.

Follow the driveway for 0.8km, ignoring all other side trails, until you reach the house at the very top. Opposite the house entrance is a stile. Climb over it and follow the trail uphill to the left for about 300m until you reach another fork. Take the path to the right and continue for 370m until you reach another fork. Turn right again, and continue downhill until you come to a wooden barrier. Go through this barrier and turn left at the T-junction. Take another left in 20m at the next T-junction.

Follow this trail uphill for about 250m until you reach yet another T-junction. Turn right, and follow the path until you re-converge with the main trail. Turn left and follow along until you come to a final T-junction. Turn left, following the sign for the Ridgeway until you reach the car park. Look out for the WWI practice trenches on either side, dug in the winter of 1914 by troops based in nearby Halton.

Insider Hints

  • Stop in Wendover before you start the trail. The public car park is free for an hour, and has public toilets along with plenty of stores to purchase picnic items! Likewise, Princes Risborough is a good stop for pubs and refreshments.

  • Waterproof shoes are recommended, especially if it has been wet recently.

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