Today the sky is pouring with rain, and it makes writing a post about a sunny day out on one of Hampshire’s dog friendly beaches so ironic. A couple of weekends ago the weather was the exact opposite of today, and we decided not to miss a chance to enjoy the sea. We are not particularly beach people and we try to avoid crowded places with sand castles and picnics. One reason is that we like to walk on a beach, not to sit on it. But the main reason is that Milo likes picnics very much. He also thinks people’s things lying around are perfect for marking. So, to save us from those awkward moments when we pretended it’s not our dog, we prefer to seek out some remote and semi-wild beaches, where we can let him off the lead.
On that day we just looked at the map and noticed just the right place not so far from Fleet: the Hurst Spit. The added benefit of seeing the Hurst Castle sealed the deal, and off we went. Hurst Spit is easy to find, as it is located just next to Milford on Sea. Just follow the signs for Hurst Castle, and you’ll get to the bridge leading to the spit. There is plenty of parking on the road.
The Spit is a long narrow stripe of land leading into the sea with the Hurst Castle positioned at the very edge.
If your dogs like swimming, they will enjoy it. Milo doesn’t really like water, but he had plenty of mud to enjoy.
The Spit is covered with pebbles, which are bit challenging to walk on, so wear suitable shoes. However, such a varied surface is really good for dogs. It provides additional stimulation, helps to improve coordination and the dog’s equivalent of fine motor skills.
Whenever Milo gets a chance, he indulges in some sea weed. It appears that it is so much tastier freshly picked from the water, that Milo is even willing to overcome his dislike of getting wet.
We walked to the castle to get a closer look at the lighthouse. The walk is about 1.5 miles one way.
We were lucky with the weather, and the views were stunning.
Hurst Castle’s end of the spit is just 3/4 miles from the Isle of Wight.
We didn’t go inside the castle, but, I believe, dogs are allowed on leads.
You can get to the castle on a tiny ferry, and, again, I saw someone arriving with a dog, so, I think, dogs are allowed on board. However, If I were you, I wouldn’t miss a walk on the spit.
We walked around the castle and headed back.
Recall training (you can never have too much of it).
Overall, the Hurst Spit is a nice place to walk a dog. We will definitely go there again next summer. I wouldn’t suggest going there when weather is not good enough. As it is quite isolated, it is a perfect place to train a recall. There is almost nowhere to run off. Yes, it is connected to the mainland, but if you’re far enough from the bridge, you can let your not-so-obedient dog off the lead without too much worrying.