15 June, 2022
A stunning walk that features King’s Wood the 1500-acre forest in the Kent Downs Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, in Challock, Kent
King's Wood is a 1500-acre forest in the Kent Downs Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, in Challock. The wood is a mix of ancient trees and newly planted areas, and is home to walking trails, horse riding trails and a number of outdoor activity areas. The wood is also popular with dog walkers, picnickers and nature lovers. The walking trails wind their way through the woods, past ancient oak trees and bluebell fields, and offer stunning views of the Kent Downs. The horse riding trails follow similar routes, and provide a great way to explore the wood on horseback. There are also a number of outdoor activity areas, including a children's play area, a BMX track and a nature reserve. Whether you're looking for a peaceful stroll or an adventurous day out, King's Wood has something to offer everyone.
King’s Wood was historically a royal hunting forest and a large herd of fallow deer still run free there, which I have seen on previous visits.
My walk was 13.5KM following the grit roads and footpaths and was very peaceful as I only saw 2 other people in 3 hours!
It is managed by the Forestry Commission and the Kentish Stour Countryside Partnership for conservation, recreation and timber production and is open to the public throughout the year and has an active Friends of King’s Wood Association that hold regular events.
Since 1994, Stour Valley Creative Partnership has commissioned artists to make sculptures within the forest and also other kinds of artworks. Artists who are particularly responsive to the history and character of this working forest are invited to spend long periods here. As a consequence of their close and sympathetic involvement with the forest, they use natural materials found in the immediate area, and engage with seasonal and growing cycles. Their use of natural materials means that the sculptures in King’s Wood gradually change and will all, eventually, become part of the natural forest cycle of decay and regeneration. Day to day, they are transformed by light, weather and seasonal occurrences.
You can do shorter walks around the wood - a marked trail leads visitors round the sculptures in King’s Wood and visitors should allow at least 2.5 hours to complete the trail.
Total elevation of the walk is 187 metres with a mixture of roads and country and riverside paths.
Nigel ranks this walk a score 8.8 out of 10. A stunning walk in the Kent countryside.
3 hours 14 minutes
I parked in the main Car Park at the King’s Wood Challock entrance.
What3words location we used is - ///transmitted.stumps.dorms
Below you'll find a mapmyride image of the route including elevation.
Nigel is the founder of 9KM BY 9AM and walks 9KM before 9 o’clock every day.
The channel features daily walks and thoughts and is open to anyone who wants to challenge themselves.
Over the first 12 months Nigel walked 3,420kms before breakfast! That’s the equivalent of 81 marathons!
Nigel says, ‘The walks are a great time to think, plan your day and also meditate. It’s not just about walking it's about the ideas, the thoughts, the creativity time. Out walking early in the morning is a great time to learn new things through listening to podcasts and audio books and reflect.’
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I walk 9km every morning before 9 o'clock, which means in the Winter months the walks are pre-sunrise, so it is pretty much dark for at least 50% of the walking time.
Contributor, Nigel, started wearing Alpaca socks on my daily 9KM BY 9AM walks in February 2022 and found them to be a game changer.
The latest 9km by 9am walk takes us to the North Downs Way, which stretches from Farnham in Surrey to Canterbury and the White Cliffs of Dover in Kent.
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