Nestled on the Northern boundary of Dorset, butting with Wiltshire in the heart of the ancient landscape of Cranborne Chase, lies Mistleberry Hillfort and Chase Woods. A landscape which links old England to today in forms of exposed earthworks and buried barrows. Discover the hidden beech avenue planted by General Pitt-Rivers and follow the medieval route of Shire Rack, through coppice and ivy and under an oak and maple canopy. With views, when possible, through branches and across open fields, connecting you to the wider landscape of South Dorset and to the coast.

Distance: 6.5 miles/10km

Duration: 3 hours

Ability: Medium.

Max Height: 500ft.

Min Height: 426ft.

Total climb: 295ft.

Terrain: Path, track, road and field.

Map: OS Explorer 118 Shaftesbury and Cranborne Chase

Start Point: RSPB Garston wood (Postcode: SP5 5PE, Grid Reference: SU003194, What Three Words: hush.scorched.jets)

How to Get There: From Blandford, travel east to Salisbury in the A354. After 9 miles, take the first exit on the roundabout to Sixpenny Handley. On entering the village, turn right onto Dean Lane and then keep right and the next fork. Follow the road for about a mile and the car park will appear on the left, marked with wooden fencing.  

Dogs: In accordance with the Countryside Code and any notices on route.

Refreshments: None on route but nearby is the award winning pub The Museum in Farnham.

Garston Woods

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