BOAT: Sandy Lane

Location: Priory Ln, Frensham, Surrey GU10 3, UK
  • Overall Rating: 5
  • Frensham, Surrey.
  • OS Explorer Map 145, 'Guildford & Farnham, Godalming & Farnborough'.
  • Starting OS Grid Reference: SU853416
  • Starting GPS Co-ordinates: N51 10' 04.11" W000 46' 52.44"
  • Finishing OS Grid Reference: SU862405
  • Finishing GPS Co-ordinates: N51 09' 31.34" W000 46' 12.87"
  • To see: Frensham Ponds.
  • ALWAYS follow the Greenlane Code!
For once a lane that has, apparently, not been named ironically! And it's a good one, and oh my word is it ever. Sandy Lane is an awesome greenlane that runs down the western bank of the National Trust-owned Frensham Little Pond. There is absolutely no vegetation of any import to ruin one's paintwork despite the widespread gorse on Frensham Common, principally because it seems to be subjected to a regular controlled burn. It's surface, being deep sand for it's almost entire length, is a little harder going than we'd have expected, but only because a different technique is required for driving these seldom-encountered sandy surfaces. Once you're used to it, it's a breeze!

But the real reason this lane stands out is the view and the landscape it traverses. This really is one of the most beautiful parts of south-east England, maybe even in England as a whole, and on the sunny, clear autumn evening that we drove it, the lane was breathtaking (see picture, right). As a negative, its beauty unfortunately means it is very popular with all kinds of people, especially on weekends, and since not everyone is as open-minded as your devoted explorers when it comes to vehicular access to unsurfaced roads, be warned a confrontation might take place, however it is very unlikely (see the terrible video below, taken by an unknown trial-biker).

Running south from Priory Lane, just south of Millbridge, Sandy Lane heads in a southerly direction from one of the car parks for Frensham Common up a steep but short incline through sparse coniferous woodland. On cresting the hill, the lane very gently descends and starts out to form a tangent with the western bank of Frensham Little Pond. After passing through open, gorse-dotted countryside for just over a kilometre, the lane re-enters woodland and where it hits Lowicks, the lane turns to the east and for good measure crosses a ford! Admittedly, it's nothing dramatic as it is merely the overflow stream from the pond, and has long had a hard concrete base, however, a ford is a ford! Shortly after the lane turns back into tarmac and continues into Rushmoor. Full marks for a wonderful lane that has it all.

View Sandy Lane in a larger map

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