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This cache is located half way round a 5 mile circular walk in one of the most attractive yet least visited parts of the Island.
This is one of my favourite walks, about five miles in total. There are no short cuts on this one unless you visit the cache by boat.
It is well worth the effort though, some lovely views and you are unlikely to meet many people. It is best done on a clear day.
Most of the walk is on firm gravel tracks, but there are several stretches of footpath that can be muddy in winter.
Turn off the main Yarmouth to Newport Road into a private track which is signposted the Hampstead Estate, (N50º 42.044 W1º 25.898).
There is a car park about 400 yards up the track on the left hand side (N50º 42.212 W1º 25.903). you must not drive beyond this car park. Please keep to the track as the surrounding woodland is private.
Follow the track and you will soon cross a bridge over the estuary where you may be lucky enough to spot a kingfisher. Keep on towards Hampstead Grange and Farm and look out for red squirrels which are plentiful in this area.
Just before you reach Hampstead Grange there is a gateway on your right which offers a good view over Thorness Bay and the Newtown Estuary. (N50º 43.048 W1º 26.046).
Follow the path past Hampstead Grange and round to the right through Hampstead Farm. As you walk along the path there are good views across the Solent to the mainland shore between Lymington and Beaulieu.
The path will take you down on to the shore at Hampstead Ledge. Look out for the memorial (N50º 43.582 W1º 25.559). I think the inscription reads:
“In loving memory of David Horace Cox aged 29 lost at sea off Hampstead Ledge with his friend William Patrick Hope Pollack aged 20 on Nov 27th 1932 The sea is his. Robin Murray Cox lost at sea June 2nd 1934 in death they are not divided. God give them rest”
As you walk along the ledge you will see the footpath on your right which marks your return journey, but first carry straight on along the ledge to find the cache.
The cache is a large ammo box which is now empty other than the log book. However the point of this cache is the location and the walk, rather than the content, so I hope you still take the trouble to visit this fantastic location.
Once you have finished at the cache sight, follow the footpath which will take you across fields and footbridges where you should see a good assortment of water fowl, before bringing you out on the track again, near a small jetty (N50º 43.167 W1º 24.778).
From here just follow the track back to the car park.
Yvar hc gur bayl cbfg ba gur ornpu jvgu gur ynetr puvzarl ng Pnyfubg, gur pnpur vf ba guvf yvar nobhg 10 lneqf oruvaq gur rqtr bs gur gerrf.
- MapMap of the area showing route
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Coordinates are in the WGS84 datum