On a windy winter’s day I went for a walk with my brother among the trees of Whitefield Moor in the New Forest National Park. We drove through the busy streets, past queues for supermarkets and out into the relatively quiet roads of the forest; through little villages, passing dog walkers, horses and their riders and shoppers with their local purchases, as we made our way to our destination. We have covered most of the New Forest National Park, but there are still areas we have yet to discover, and Whitefield Moor was one of them.
It is situated just off Rhinefield Road, near to the arboretum which contains some magnificent tree specimens, and has good parking and public toilets. In the summer, you could quite easily picnic there, but as it was December 23rd, that wasn’t such a tempting prospect. There are two well-signposted routes over generally flat ground; one of a mile, the other, a mile and a half. We took the longer of the two, and even stopping for photos and ambling along, it only took us about an hour. It’s a good area for dog walkers, and seemed quite accessible (in drier weather because the ground was a bit muddy in places) for buggies and wheelchairs.
There are a couple of bridges which provide a good vantage point for photographs and a game of Pooh-sticks, as the Ober Water stream runs underneath. It was quite high when we were there as we’ve had a fair amount of rain over the last week; not very ‘christmasy’ weather at all. Yet it’s the trees which really make this a lovely walk, at any time of year. In the summer, I can imagine the green foliage is stunning, yet even in winter, as the light filtered through, you could still appreciate the stark beauty they had to offer.
It was just what I needed to start my holiday and begin to recharge my batteries among nature. As we walked back to the car, the wind was starting to pick up and we knew we had made the most of the break in the bad weather to get some fresh air and peace before heading back into town.
I hope you have the chance to get out and about this season and appreciate some post winter solstice sun, after all, now the days begin to lengthen again, so we can look forward to the return of the light.
For more information on Whitefield Moor and the New Forest National Park follow the link below: