Feeling Today: 👍
So Far: 883.08 miles, 288:04 hours
Our Aga-dried boots remained dry for just a short while this morning. We had no rain but long, wet grass on overgrown paths and field edges had the same effect. It was a dull morning’s walk through to Bridgwater, with our route largely determined for us by the limited options available to cross the M5, the River Parrett, a train line and a canal.
We skirted around the edge of Bridgwater through areas of industry and new housing and missed the town’s best features – if it has any.
Putting Bridgwater behind us we left the Somerset Levels and rose gently onto the start of the Quantocks Hills. To Dave’s dismay the pub at North Petherton came a little early for lunch (I thought) and we pressed on.
We entered the Quantocks AONB at its south-eastern corner and the easy path climbed steadily through and along wooded valleys. The topography and trees meant we had few views and didn’t really get any sense of the hills.
We stopped for a late lunch at Fyne Court, a National Trust property, and dressed feet and put on dry socks, thankfully without upsetting other visitors. We didn’t venture further than the tea rooms which were modest but still seemed to be the main attraction here. Disappointingly no cheese scones, and we had organic Sicilian lemonade from Devon, pasties and a pot of tea. Dave reminded me again about the pub at North Petherton ….
We’d been fairly underwhelmed by the Quantocks so far but the climb onto Cothelstone Hill was well worthwhile. It gave 360* views over the Bristol Channel to the north, the Levels and the Mendip and Blackdown Hills to the east and south, and to Exmoor and the Devon coast in the west. It was overcast today but this must be well worth a special visit when it’s clearer!
We dropped sharply off the hill into West Bagborough where Dave negotiated a couple of early celebratory pints at the Rising Sun, which was closed but helpfully located next door to our farmhouse B&B. We returned later for fine dining and to test out the pub’s stock of Argentinian Malbec …..
In what is fast becoming a South West social whirl, we’ll meet Mike tomorrow on the path before Friday night in Wheddon Cross, and then I’ll see Bev, Henry and Woolacombe over the weekend.