How to get there - The Launch point is at Wharf Bridge, Aldershot near the junction of the A323 and A325.
Get a map with driving directions to start (enter the postcode of your starting point at A)
Suggested Launch Site - The launch point is a slipway from an unsurfaced car park which is accessed from the northbound slip road (Clubhouse Road) onto the A325 (Farnborough Road).
Description - It is easy to imagine Aldershot as an Army town (with negative connotations for many) but this trip is through woodland and heath and the only "military" influences are that you will see more joggers on the towpath than dog walkers and some of the bridges look as if they were built by the Royal Engineers (which they probably were).
Set off west from the launch point through unspoilt woodland. After a little over a mile you will emerge from the woods for a short passage over the heath at the end of the runway of the Defence Evaluation and Research Agency (home of the world famous Farnborough Air Show). You may experience sudden jet noise from the runway but this is not a busy airport. You are also likely to suffer the effects of any wind there may be as the topography seems to have a funnel effect.
This is the site of Eelsmore Flash a Site of Special Scientific Interest and wildlife reserve.
After only a few hundred yards you are back into the natural woodland. you can continue two mile to Fleet (where there is a canalside car park to leave a car if you want a one way trip) or a further two miles to Crooham Wharf (canalside car park). Or you can turn around where you please and return to the start.
There are no locks or portages on this stretch of canal.
Launch to Fleet & return (8 miles)
Launch to Crookham and return (11 miles)
Comments on this trip
Ali Beckett 04 Sep 2008
We did this trip in August 2008, it was lovely with a varied landscape which kept it interesting all the way along.