The ‘Needs to Know’
PLEASE NOTE: The Tree Top Walk has now been demolished
Distance: 0.75 miles (1.21km)
Time to walk: This short walk can normally be done in about an hour, but Salcey Forest has so may trails just take your time, walk quietly & slowly along to try & spot the wildlife. If you cut off down the other paths you’re likely to see so much more.
Difficulty: Good forestry tracks & suitable for pushchairs etc
Parking: Public pay & display car park. Charges as at February 2023
Public toilets: In the car park
Map of the route : None so just follow our instructions.
So what can we tell you about this walk…well it’s pretty simple & suitable for the whole year & something all the family can do, even in a pushchair in good weather. There’s lots of opportunities for seeing wildlife too, but you need to be alert & quiet & it depends on what time of year you walk here as to what you’ll see. It’s also worth walking in the forest at different times of the day…evening is a great time to see deer & owls etc. Keep an eye out for butterflies, moths & dragonflies. It’s also renowned as a habitat of the dormouse.
According to the Forestry Commission the name of The Elephant Walk is taken from the fact that during World War II elephants were used for logging here. Some of the oaks in the forest are over 500 years old. The forest is an ancient royal hunting forest established by William the Conquerer.
1. Park up & don’t forget to get a ticket. There’s a great cafe & information centre here too selling maps of all the paths…
2. Walk towards the children’s playground…
…& look for the signpost on the right in the picture below. This walk will be following the purple marks…
3. Follow the path & at the post below turn left
4. Ignore the path joining from the right & follow the existing one as it bends right. There was some great sunlight through autumn trees along here when I did this walk in 2013
5. Eventually you’ll come to a wider track where you turn right & continue to follow the path. There a lovely bench at this junction too…
6. Carry on along the wide track. Don’t forget to keep looking behind as there are cycle paths in the forest too & they can come up on your fairly quickly.
7. When you come to the marker in the picture below turn left…
Be careful walking down here as a horse track crosses
On reaching the bench at the end turn right. Carry on down this path &, when it bends right, continue straight ahead…
8. Pass the wooden structure that’s part of the ‘Church Walk’…
Keep straight on to a crossroads of tracks & then head straight across aiming for the picnic tables
9. For many years it was here that you joined the magnificent Tree Top Walk, sadly demolished in 2022. Have a look at the pond on the left. This is where the Elephants were bathed during breaks in their work
Continue along the ‘Elephant Walk’. There’s another bench ahead if you fancy a stop to watch the world go by…
10. The path’s are easy to follow so just keep straight on & it’s pretty straight forward back to the car park
11. Well that’s about the end of the short Elephant walk in Salcey Forest but there’s so many trails etc you can try. It’s such a great place & you’ll see different things throughout the seasons
Today we sat in a ditch waiting for an owl to start hunting along this hedge (classic owl territory) but not today…next time!
So…this is a great little walk at any time of the year…