Thursley Common Circular Walk from Elstead

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The brackish waters of Thursley Common bog are extremely acidic (with a pH as low as 3 in places for the scientifically minded). The bog and its adjacent areas of woodland and lowland heath are regarded as nationally important for their bird, reptile and invertebrate populations.

Highlights include:

birds: woodlark, Dartford warbler, nightjar, stonechat, whinchat, curlew, woodcock, redstart, hawfinch, tawny owl, hobby and all three British woodpecker species;

reptiles: the nationally rare sand lizard and smooth snake;

butterflies: silver-studded blue, white-letter hairstreak, purple emperor, grayling;

a large population of dragonflies and damselflies including the nationally rare white-faced dragonfly;

twelve species of grasshoppers and crickets including the nationally rare large marsh grasshopper;

bog plants: sundew, bog asphodel, marsh orchid.

I find the little sundew plants quite fascinating. They have sticky 'jaws' like miniature Venus fly trap plants which can be enticed to close by feeding the plant a small, dead fly!

For the past few years there has also been a great grey shrike over-wintering on the common.

Wildlife aside, the common can be quite atmospheric, especially at dusk.

This route was revised slightly in June 2020 owing to a wildfire which destroyed the boardwalks. Evidence of this fire will be seen around waymarks 7 & 8 for some time to come.

England - South England - Surrey - Surrey Hills


Birds, Food Shop, Mostly Flat, Pub, Public Transport, Wildlife, Woodland
15/03/2015 - Kevin Pay

Lovely walk. A couple of times the navigation is a little confusing but if you consult a map all is quickly clear.

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Distance away
27.4 Miles
Holidays and activities
Distance away
25.5 Miles