Chasing sticks in Houghton Forest Sussex

Today was a good day for me. We decided to explore Western Sussex to seek out new walks that I might enjoy. With a little bit of research we found a nice looking forest very close to the beautiful market town of Arundel in West Sussex, England. There is a big, free, accessible car park (even for my horse friends and their humans). There is a nice looking Cafe although we didn’t investigate it this time. It was a gloriously sunny day and as soon as you arrive you can see the bridal path that leads into Houghton Forest.

Car park at Houghton Forest

Do be aware that there are a few bins near the cafe and car park but we didn’t see any around the forest so try to encourage your furry friend/s to do their business before the walk starts or you will have to carry that little bag a fair distance with you!

We followed the stoney, wide bridal track into the forest and soon came across a clearing with some swings to play on (if you are human) I was more interested in selecting fine stick specimens for my humans to throw for me while sweeping the forest floor with my very waggy tail.


We crossed through the clearing and found many little paths leading off in different directions. We ended up in quite dense forest in the shade that was a little bit chilly. But when we got into sunny patches it was very warm! I hunted out any cool muddy puddles (of course) and enjoyed a little wallow. There was lots of meadowy clearings where the paths widen and I could bounce around in the long grass (I love doing that!) There was some very nice smelling long grass that I had a good roll around in too.


I was off the lead from the very beginning of the walk and could have free reign on and around all the paths we followed. Cyclists do use some of the paths and we did meet a couple. We also met some very big horses and their riders. That was the only time I was put on the lead (I didn’t see the big deal and would have been fine off my lead).


We use an app called view ranger that we use on all our mountain walks. You can download the maps for free when you are online and use them offline. It basically tracks you wherever you are. So we could see on the app the different directions paths would take. Circular walks are always more interesting than having to retrace our steps so we used the app to help us make a big circuit.



The section of forest we were in seemed to be surrounded at its edges by agricultural land. We came across an opening and looked out over a beautiful field of wheat before heading along a path back deep into the forest. There were lots of interesting smells and sights. Full of energy I chased many sticks until I was so hot I needed a lie down.


We didn’t have an enormous amount of time for a very long walk so we created a circuit 6km long,  at a gentle pace we finished it and were back at the car park within 2 hours. 


I have mastered drinking water from a bottle and appreciated a good drink when we got back to the van. Being back in the van after so long without a trip was exciting. I am looking forward to going on a doggy road trip at the end of the month. I will blog about my walks and adventures in Austria, Slovenia and beyond…. Watch this space..!


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You can find this walk at:  Whiteways Cafe, Bury Hill, Houghton, Arundel BN18 9FD.

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