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Walk 53: Essendon East Loop

6.5 miles (10.5 km) with 194m total ascent

Photograph of the footbridge on Walk 53: Essendon East Loop
This walk from Essendon heads E to Howe Green then on to Bayford, S to Little Berkhamsted, and back to Essendon. This route crosses Essendon golf course twice and includes a fair amount of up and down. There are two pubs along the way.

Emmie Murphy's village store at point 18 in the walk serves hot drinks and snacks.


Note: This walk crosses over a golf course

Walk 53: Essendon East Loop
Walk 53: Essendon East Loop
Click on the map above for a larger version
Created on Map Hub by Hertfordshire Walker
Elements © Thunderforest © OpenStreetMap contributors

There is an interactive map at the foot of this page
Those with GPS devices can download GPX or KML files for this walk. We've added What3Words location references for those who use that system. If you print these walks you might want to use the green PrintFriendly icon at the bottom of these directions to delete elements such as photographs.

1: From the village of Essendon walk W on West End Lane for 120m until you reach a footpath on the right just after the last house on the right (location - https://w3w.co/carry.hobby.tune). This is Essendon footpath 5.

2: Take this path and walk diagonally NE for 350m across the field until you reach the B158, Essendon Hill (location - https://w3w.co/live.lamp.raft).

3: Cross the road and take the footpath opposite, still Essendon footpath 5, as it heads NE over the golf course for 380 to a footpath junction. Here you head E, now on Essendon footpath 2, for 400m until you reach a footbridge leading to Bedwell Avenue (location - https://w3w.co/demand.backed.sheep).

4: Turn left and walk NE for 90m on Little Berkhamsted bridleway 26 looking out for a footpath sign on your right (location - https://w3w.co/launch.face.pound). Take this path, Little Berkhamsted footpath 1 which heads ENE and for 150m, climbs a hill and crosses a field before reaching a lane (location - https://w3w.co/estate.dozen.vision). This is Little Berkhamsted bridleway 18.

5: Turn left then follow the lane (Little Berkhamsted bridleway 18) NE and then E for 180m until the lane bends to your left.

6: At this point you will see a footpath sign on your right just after a house (location - https://w3w.co/yoga.tiny.lunch). Take this path, Little Berkhamsted footpath 4 and head SSE for 650m across a couple of fields until you emerge at the top of a lane by Ashfield Farm (location - https://w3w.co/slice.locked.tunnel).

7: Continue straight ahead heading SSE along Little Berkhamsted bridleway 18 for 40m looking out for a footpath on your left (location - https://w3w.co/save.pigs.gifted). Take this footpath, Little Berkhamsted footpath 3, and follow it for E for 300m as it climbs over a hill and drops down to a gate leading to a track and then a paved lane. Follow this lane for 540m as it heads SE round to the right with Culver Wood on your left and then E to a road called Robins Nest Hill (location - https://w3w.co/wiping.purely.erase).

8: Turn left and walk N for 110m along the E side of the road looking out for a footpath on your right (location - https://w3w.co/meal.fame.wisely). This is Little Berkhamsted footpath 5 which heads E with the fields on your left. Continue along this path for 260m to a lane (location - https://w3w.co/movie.riches.hoot).

9: Turn right then follow the lane, which is also Little Berkhamsted bridleway 20. Head S and SE for 300m until you meet a bridleway on your left (location - https://w3w.co/grants.soaks.famous).

Take this track, Little Berkhamsted bridleway 21, and follow it NNE and then NE for 270m until it meets another lane near some houses (location - https://w3w.co/doctor.grows.smashes).

10: Here you turn right and continue S for 110m on a gravel track which is Little Berkhamsted footpath 24 looking out for a footpath on the left (location - https://w3w.co/small.year.tiles). This is Little Berkhamsted footpath 6 which heads ENE then NE down to Bayford Wood.

11: Enter Bayford Wood (location - https://w3w.co/crunch.wacky.pizza) where your footpath becomes Bayford footpath 3. Follow it for 270m as it crosses a footbridge, climbs through the woods heading NE, and then crosses a field heading ENE to a footpath junction (location - https://w3w.co/ideal.amuse.arts).

12: Here you turn right and head SE on Bayford footpath 4 for 330m as the path bends to the E emerging on Bayford Lane (location - https://w3w.co/river.hangs.wide).

13: Turn right on Bayford Lane and head S, E and then S for 650m to Bayford village. Unfortunately this part of the walk involves some lane walking. Some stretches don’t have footpaths.

14: Head SW for 770m along Ashendene Road until you reach a footpath on your right (location - https://w3w.co/natively.lamp.keep).

15: Take this path, Bayford footpath 5 for 640m, first NW, then SW and NW again through the fields and then into Bayford Woods. Continue until you reach a footbridge (location - https://w3w.co/full.plan.steep).

16: Cross the footbridge and turn left, now on Little Berkhamsted footpath 9 and head SW and W for 580m through the fields climbing your way up to Little Berkhamsted, emerging on a lane called Bucks Alley (location - https://w3w.co/called.cheese.reap).

17: Turn right on Bucks Alley and head NW for 15m looking out for a footpath on your left (location - https://w3w.co/cross.union.making). This is a continuation of Little Berkhamsted footpath 9 which heads WSW for 340m over the fields to Little Berkhamsted village. Turn left in the village and head S for 50m until you reach The Five Horseshoes. Look out for a footpath on your right running along the side of the village cricket ground (location - https://w3w.co/lofts.belong.pounds).

18: Take this path, Little Berkhamsted footpath 8, and head WSW for 180m with the cricket pitch on your left until you reach a gate. Here you turn right on Little Berkhamsted bridleway 22 and head NW for 60m until you reach Little Berkhamsted Lane (location - https://w3w.co/energetic.launch.stars).

19: Turn left on Little Berkhamsted Lane and head SW for 100m looking out for a bridleway/lane on your right (location - https://w3w.co/living.cherry.offer). This is Little Berkhamsted bridleway 17 which heads NW for 970m dropping down through woodland until it reaches a cottage on the left by the golf course (location - https://w3w.co/tens.shots.supply).

20: At the cottage head W on Essendon bridleway 4 climbing W for 190m up to the golf club buildings (location - https://w3w.co/rich.supporter.habit).

21: Follow the path round as it bends right then left and then continues W and NW for another 510m across the fairway eventually emerging on School Lane (location - https://w3w.co/asset.paper.lucky).

22: Turn left on School Lane and head W for 180m back to Essendon village.

Interactive map


  1. The word 'left' in the last sentence of paragraph 17 should say 'right'

    1. Thanks so much for taking the trouble to write. I've fixed the error. Hope it didn't spoil your walk. All feedback appreciated. David

  2. I walked #53 on bank holiday monday 29/5 as a group of 8 and it was really excellent. Paths all dry and directions very clear and easy to follow. Would definitely recommend.

    1. So glad you enjoyed it. A nice route. Thanks fo the feedback. David

  3. Very enjoyable walk on a sunny day in June - directions were very clear to follow - used these along with a compass and OS map to teach teens how to navigate. Highlights included seeing deer and red kites. Couple of pub stops also helped!

    1. Well done teaching teens to navigate. A great skill to have.

  4. Many thanks for this really useful site. Did this walk yesterday, starting and ending at Bayford Station. Downloaded the gpx file and it worked perfectly. First visit to the very pretty village of Essendon and we also saw red kites and gathered blackberries along the way.
    Did you know that the Baker Arms in Bayford has closed? Their website is still up + a big sign as you come out of the station but it is definitely closed.
    Don't know if others would find it useful but a filter for walks possible from station to staion would be a great addition for me as I don't currently have a car but otherwise your site is a wonderful resource.

    1. Hi Mary, glad you enjoyed the walk and that the GPX file worked perfectly for you. Thanks for the information re the Baker Arms. I will leave the reference on the walks and check out whether there are any plans for it to reopen. Regarding linear walks, there is a page on the website called 'Linear walks' where I list all the linear walks we create. Most of which are station-to-station. I hope this helps. David

    2. Thanks David, I'll check out linear walks.


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