Saturday 30th July 2016

The Ancestor's Trail is an annual biological pilgrimage combining walking, evolution and art. Based on Richard Dawkins' book 'The Ancestor's Tale', the Trail guides its walkers along a time line from the present day back 3.8 billion years to the origins of life.

The Trail is made up of several walks of varying lengths, located in Epping Forest, London. Each of the main trails are guided and start at a train or tube station. All the trails merge in time and we finish together at Cheshunt YHA. Once there, we celebrate with food and music Saturday night, and then scientific speakers Sunday morning.

Our 2016 charity: One Zoom : What life-form will you be?

Please Sponsor a leaf on the tree of life.


Saturday 30th July

Travel to your chosen trail start location. (Morning walkers - Bring your own picnic)

9.45am - Human trail start time - chingford train station - 12 miles walking

10.05am - Gazelles start time - Loughton tube station - 11.5 miles walking

11am - early picnic lunch at High Beech Epping Forest. Toilets available. Gazelle and Human trail only.

11.30am - Amphibians start time - Epping Tube station - 9 miles walking

1pm - 2nd toilet stop (for trails before Amphibians rendezvous).

1.15pm - Bacteria start time - Enfield lock rail station - 4.5 miles walking (including wheelchair users)

1.30pm - Jonny Berliner performance at amphibian rendezvous.

2.10pm - Plants start time - Waltham Cross rail station - 3 miles walking. (or 2pm from the YHA)

4.30pm - arrival at Cheshunt YHA - the dawn of life! - Tea and cake (for those who've booked)

ALL EVENTS from this stage onwards require advanced booking and will take place at @ YHA Cheshunt :

7-8pm - evening meal

8.30pm - late - bar and evening entertainment including the amazing Jonny Berliner

12am - last train from Cheshunt rail station to central London if you're not staying over night.

Sunday 31st

8am-9am - breakfast

10am - 1pm - science speakers - including the BBC's very own Yan Wong, James Rosindell - back by popular demand and co- authors of One Zoom - and also Tom McNally.

1.15pm - jump on train back to central London from Cheshunt rail station.

We are a non-profit and booking post-trail activities allows us keep the trail free to all. Please consider joining us after the walks.

Information on booking the entertainment and the YHA will be shown after you register.

Come join us on a biological pilgrimage!

A new version of Richard Dawkins' and Dr Yan Wong's book The Ancestor's Tale, is now available. The book,on which our trail is based, takes us on a journey back through time meeting up with our increasingly distant common ancestors.

The One Zoom allows you to explore the tree of life in a completely new way: like a map, everything is on one page, all you have to do is zoom in and out.