You turn right out of the campsite and then right again and take the forest road and you continue along this until you reach the old railway bridge.
Make a mental note of this as you may need it on the way back.
Continue along the road, always bearing right and as you go downhill, the paved road ends and you continue along the track, which is part of the Peddars Way, this can be wet.
You pass Thompson Water on your right. (no dogs are allowed in this nature reserve).
Continue along the track until you come to a road, cross the road and continue to follow the path opposite (you are allowed to cycle this) until you reach another road called Sparrows Hill, turn right and after a mile you reach a T junction.
You either turn left here to do the Watton extension or turn right.
Turn left onto the B1110 and after ½ a mile turn left towards Merton and then follow the road around ,when you reach Merton, continue towards Watton, where there are plenty of refreshment options.
You return the same way.
If you do not do the Watton extension then you turn right and after about ½ a mile turn left into Thompson.
There is a refreshment opportunity here, in the village take a left turn to the Chequers Inn, it does good food.
After a well-deserved drink follow the road around for just over a mile, passing the church on your left until you reach the main road.
At the main road you turn right and go down the main road for a couple hundred yards.
This is a busy road so you may want to walk this part.
On your right you will see a car park and this is the entry to the ‘Great Eastern Pingo Trail’
This is part of the old Thetford to Watton and Swaffham railway .
Pingoes are small ponds, created by glacial action during the Ice Ages and there are descriptive boards on the route giving further information.
This is part of a circular walk, full details:
You continue along the old railway line for about two miles, just before the cutting you need to take the track on your left and follow this around the house and pick up the forest road, where you started the ride and then retrace your tracks back to the campsite.
Where you need to come off the railway line should be obvious but if you do find that you have continued too far on the track, you will reach the railway bridge, where you were asked to make a mental note of, when you started your ride.
You will not be able to get up to the road from here so you will need to retrace your steps and pick up the track off the railway path
Part of the long loop returning back to Thompson Common. Following the old Thetford to Swaffham railway line, which was closed in 1964 as part of the Beeching cuts.
© Copyright Hugh Venables and licensed for reuse under this Creative Commons Licence