south west coast path
10th may 2014
The weather forecast for today has been dreadful (but getting progressively better) all week and after heavy overnight rain it looks like I've got a thoroughly nice spring day to look forward to. Could be a bit blustery though.
Dartmouth high tide 15:49
Dartmouth low tide 08:59
After packing my bag, I leave Heron's Rest for the walk through Long Wood down to the ferry crossing over the River Dart to Dartmouth. It's a lovely Spring day so I take advantage and photograph some of the spring flowers.
Just before leaving Long Wood I come across a sign warning of basking adders. Unfortunately the day is still young and so hasn't warmed up yet so I don't come across any.
I continue ambling through Dartmouth passing the Ship in the Dock Inn, the Windjammer Inn and the George and Dragon before walking along the cobbled waterfront, passing Bayards Cove Inn and then through Bayards Cove Fort, a small Tudor artillery fort guarding Dartmouth's inner harbour. I climb steps to leave the waterfront and head through Warfleet Creek and towards St Petrox Church.
From here I head next door to Dartmouth Castle which, for over 600 years, has guarded the narrow entrance to the Dart estuary.
The path zig zags out towards Blackstone Point, Coombe Point and then Warren Point, passing secluded coves on the way before heading inland to reach a minor road. This road leads to the A379 which takes me in to Stoke Fleming where I pass the Green Dragon and St Peter's Church.
The wind has been blustery all day but seems to turn into a gale here and I can barely stay on my feet so I head back to the main road to try and find some relief, cross it, and drop down to a path that follows the road in front of Slapton Ley. There isn't any relief!
From here it should be an easy walk to the car park at Torcross, the destination for today's walk. Unfortunately, today it isn't an easy walk so I stumble around in the wind until I reach the car park where I shelter in a hide overlooking Slapton Ley for a bit.
FLORA AND FAUNA
Flora and fauna encountered on the walk today includes :-
- no adders
- empty snail shells
- wild garlic
- red campion
MARKS OUT OF TEN?
According to my phone I've walked 16 miles today (much further than I was expecting) which amounts to 32396 steps. Despite the wind for most of the day it has been a great day's spring walking with plenty of interest to see throughout the day. 9 out of 10.
View heron's rest to torcross in a larger map