Welcome to Hertfordshire Walker

A growing collection of free walks suitable for all ages, from an hour-long potter to half-day hikes. We have walking tips for those new to rambling and a comment box beneath every walk for your feedback - you may need to disable any ad blocker to add comments.

Walk 34: Essendon S Loop

Quite lanes, a gorse ridge and wooded byway

6 miles (9.6 km)

Photograph along the ridge path on Walk 34: Wildhill Double Loop

This walk is lovely (a combination of two of our shorter walks), but you do have to watch out for cars. And you might get muddy because there are two paths along the way that get churned up after rain. There are four pubs either along the way or accessed by short detours.

Map of Walk 34: Wildhill Double Loop


  1. Park in the car park at The Woodman, Wildhill and take the path to the south-east of the beer garden. Head uphill diagonally south-west to a gate in the hedge.
  2. Go through the gate, across the next field, through another gate and, keeping the woodland on your left and the field on your right walk east following the path through the crops until you reach a broken stile leading to Kentish Lane, the B158.
  3. Turn left on Kentish Lane and, walking along the east side of the road, head north, until you reach Wildhill Road on your left. Cross carefully here (best before the bend), and continue heading north-east along Kentish Lane until you reach Hornbeam Lane on your right.
  4. Follow Hornbeam Lane south-east until it becomes a path. Continue along the path, down a dip, up a hill, through a Hornbeam wood and then emerge on Cucumber Lane.
  5. Turn left on Cucumber Lane and follow it north-west until you reach Berkhamsted Lane.
  6. Turn right and follow Berkhamsted Lane for almost a mile until you reach a track on your left just before the outskirts of Little Berkhamsted. (At this point you could continue into Little Berkhamsted where there is a corner shop and The Five Horseshoes.
  7. Take this track until you reach a farm where it becomes a footpath. Walk along this path, through the gorse, down through the woods and to the bottom of the hill where you reach the golf course.
  8. Follow the way marked signs pointing west up to the club house where you turn right then left, across the course and emerge in Essendon. 
  9. Walk up to the B158, Kentish Lane and turn left. (At this point you could continue along Kentish Lane to The Rose & Crown if you want refreshments).
  10. You will see a footpath sign pointing west on the southern edge of the cricket club. Take this path and follow it as it edges the cricket pitch, drops down through woodland, crosses a wooden bridge and then continues uphill with fields on your left and the hedgerow on your right until you reach path 14, a BOAT (Byway Open To All Traffic). (At this point, if you are hungry/thirsty and it's opening time, you could head straight across the BOAT and up a footpath to The Candelstick).
  11. Here you turn left and follow this track up and down hill as it twists and turns until it reaches West End Lane.
  12. Turn left on West End Lane and follow it back to Wildhill and The Woodman car park.

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