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27 PULL-OUT WALKS WITH MAPS MORE than any other magazine... Bucks, Cheshire, Cornwall, Devon, Lancs,

Lincs, Norfolk, Northumberland, Notts, Powys, Somerset, Staffs, Surrey, Yorks

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Great walks, great times, great health

The Best of

W I BOOTN

& A LA S DISTRI KE HOLID CT AY

Discover the ultimate country walks, coastal walks, valley walks, ridge walks and mountain walks

UNBEATABLE WALKS Peak District Lake District Cotswolds Yorkshire Dales Snowdon Scottish Highlands French Pyrenees

AVEBURY TO STONEHENGE NEW GEAR

22

TS JACKTEED T ES

Top waterproof jackets for men, women & children

NEW

SHAPE UP HERO WALKERS

Tone up for summer Ade Edmondson loves the Dales with walking fitness Stuart Maconie Nordic walks specialist Joanna Hall Mark Thomas extreme rambles

MAY 2011 ÂŁ3.99

The brand new magical, mystical trail


9 The month

The Lake District like you’ve never seen it and film-making in the Yorkshire Dales.

10 Only on foot

Celebrate spring with a fantastic walking festival.

12 48 hours in...

Haslemere. A perfect walking weekend just an hour from London.

30 Subscribe now 34 Best of Britain Two years for the price of one! Get Country Walking FREE for 12 months when you subscribe for a year.

Discover Britain’s most awe-inspiring walks in our 30-page special, starting with the…

36 Cotswolds

Britain’s most beautiful country walk.

42 Peak District

Walk the incredible ridgeline of Stanage Edge.

48 Snowdon

Why Wales’ highest is king of the mountains.

Photo: Tom Bailey

Contents

A stunning view in Snowdonia. Turn to page 34 to discover more walks to see the best of Britain.


Regulars

54 Lake District A stunning walk in the Borrowdale Valley.

60 Sandwood Bay Explore the wild and beautiful coast of Scotland’s far north.

67 Feel Good

Walk your way to a flat stomach and a strong spine, plus the new superfood for walkers.

74 Dales Pub

Walk to the pub starring in ITV series ‘The Dales’.

80 Lightweight waterproof jackets

Expert verdicts on jackets for men and women.

88 Kid’s waterproofs

Top jackets for kids.

92 T-shirts

The best tees for summer.

93 Gear archive

All our gear test winners.

94 Stones Way

On foot from the Avebury circle to Stonehenge.

102 Pyrenees

22 Stuart Maconie On Nordic walking.

24 Reader photos Highlights of your month.

An amazing no-fly walking holiday in the mountains.

28 Your letters

146 Great walks on every map

101 Crossword

Think all the good walks are in the national parks? Think again...

News, views and opinions. Solve clues and win prizes.

115 Routes

27 stunning new walks with maps.

Only on foot

The month

Features

Feel good

Gear reviews

Skills & ideas

Routes


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WHAT: NEWTON STEWART WALKFEST WHEN: MAY 6TH-12TH WHERE: THE GALLOWAY HILLS WHY: EXPLORE NEW WALKS, MAKE GOOD FRIENDS, HAVE A BALL… What better way to kick-off a fantastic summer of walking than a festival? We’re talking incredible routes you’ve never walked before with someone to show you the way, and the chance to explore eye-widening scenery with a bunch of folk who ‘Get It’, who won’t be perplexed when you start jabbering ‘wow’ at a beautiful view. And if any landscape is going to start you wowing it’s the Galloway Hills of southern Scotland. Chunky domes of velvet turf curve up from lonely lochs, high enough to deliver eye-widening panoramas, sweet enough to be within reach of mere mortals. And the fun starts right now – click on the website below and you’ll see 28 route maps spider out across the intriguingly named Dungeons, Rhinns of Kell, and the high fingers of hills known as the Range of the Awful Hand. We reckon you’ll spend a happy few hours picking your walks, then a very happy few days walking them. MORE: www.newtonstewartwalkfest.co.uk

Photo: Rom Bailey

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The Best of

THE BEST COUNTRY WALK Write a list of every feature you’d expect on a country walk, and chances are they’ll score perfect 10s in the Cotswolds. Words: Jonathan Manning Photos: Tom Bailey

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B

izarre isn’t it? So many landscapes have clear labels except the one that we walk most frequently. Mountain and coast are easy to categorise, as are moorland and river, but what about country walks? Should we file them under countryside, farmland or rolling hills? At least the office planning meeting was straightforward. “We’re looking for a Cotswold-type landscape with green, rolling hills, where you can get away from it all without stepping into wilderness.” “Yeah, it’s got to be a mix of grazing pasture and woodland… like the Cotswolds.” “Absolutely, with exquisite, unspoilt stone villages that have a pub and church at their heart. You know, like the Cotswolds.” So here I am in the Chilterns… only kidding. It’s Stanton in Gloucestershire, one of the most unadulterated Cotswold villages in the entire Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty that cossets this gorgeous bit of Britain. It’s almost cinematic, from the warm glow of the honey-coloured limestone houses, with their steeply pitched gables and mullioned windows, to the dazzling scarlet of the poppy wreath on the war memorial. Roses and wisteria clamber over front doors in carefully orchestrated abandon, and only the wheelie bins put out for refuse collection hint at the rhythms of regular life. I know there are walkers who prefer a rawer reality

with mud on the roads, satellite dishes on house fronts and gates fixed with baler-twine. But when everything comes together with such blemish-free flair, ‘oohs’ tumble into ‘aaahs’ as you’re stopped in your tracks by the overwhelming prettiness. Even the horses are thoroughbreds, sporting immaculate blankets on their way to the gallops above the village. That’s where I’m heading too, but at carthorse pace. I’m dragging my heels a little, hoping the bright sun overhead will burn away the mist in the valleys. The distant countryside looks as if it has been dipped in wax, only the shadowy silhouettes of spires and ancient trees rising above the milky haze. It makes me wonder whether other candidates for Britain’s best rolling hills, from the North and South Downs to the Quantocks, Chilterns, Malverns, Lincolnshire Wolds or Borders are clear today, and I envy the ever-improving view enjoyed by a pair of buzzards drifting skywards in a languorous spiral. Yet as I climb on the superbly waymarked Cotswold Way, I start to feel rather glad, certainly happier than photographer Tom, that we’ve got this weather today, and that we’re showcasing the Cotswolds at this time of year. It’s early spring, the daffodils are out, the lambs are gamboling, but the trees are yet to blossom and bud. It’s as if the countryside has yet to put on its make-up, and

37

The very essence of a country walk, woodland, fields and the pretty stone village of Snowshill.


The Best of

THE BEST RIDGELINE Stretching 30 kilometres through the skies of central England, there’s just one contender for this title: welcome to the Peak District Edges. Words: Jenny Walters Photos: Tom Bailey

42


43

The gritstone ridge of Stanage Edge sails high above the Derbyshire dales, for what looks like forever‌


The Best of

THE BEST MOUNTAIN It may not quite be the highest in the UK, but Snowdon definitely ticks the best mountain box in most other ways, giving everybody a taste of a true mountain experience. Words: Andy Cremin Photos: Tom Bailey

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We’re not really going all the way up there, are we?


49


The Best of

60

Golden sand, turquoise seas, lochs and mountains: it doesn’t get better than Sandwood Bay.


Photo: Stephen Whitehorne

THE BEST COASTAL WALK Britain has more than 17,000km of coastline so picking the best bit was tough. We wrangled, reflected, called in extra experts, and found our winner in the far, far north... Words: Andrew McCloy

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Feel good Health

OFF THE BEATEN BACK Walking helps exercise many of the muscles in the musco-skeletal system, which in turn help provide support to the spine. Physiotherapist Lorna Taylor explains the best walking moves to boost your back… Weigh Up Your Pack “Look for

rucksacks with a stiff, padded panel that sits against your spine,” says Taylor. “This stops loose items in your pack becoming pressure points against your back. Also take care to avoid twisting your back or injuring yourself putting your pack on and avoid packing it to weigh more than 15% of your body weight.”

In association with

Stretch Your Hams

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“Do light hamstring stretches against a wall before walking,” suggests Taylor. “This will help your flexibility and reduce your injury risk because a tight hamstring can hinder the way your pelvis works as you walk and in turn this can affect your spine.”

Add Some Tech’ “Walking poles

can help in combating problems with your back, especially during steep descents, by providing additional support,” says Taylor. Also arm your iPhone with the free-todownload application from www.backcare. org.uk for advice on averting problems.

Be A Swinger

Walk with your arms and your feet. “Walking helps with your spine rotation and as a form of exercise helps purge your body of toxins while also helping to strengthen your bones,” says Taylor.

Care For Your Calves

Walking over rugged terrain will engage leg and core muscles that in turn will support your back. “Exercising your calves in particular assists your body’s venous return – the system that helps pump blood back up the legs and around your body against the force of gravity,” explains Taylor.

Take care to avoid twisting your back when putting your pack on and it should be no more than 15% of your body weight.

SILENT WALKING

Talking on the phone while walking could be a bad news call for your back according to Dr Paul Hodges, specialist in spine disorders at Queensland University, Australia. “Breathing affects the way the spine is supported by trunk muscles, which relax when we inhale. But talking at the same time you’re walking can force your breathing out of synch, causing jolts to register on the spine. Dr Hodges’ team suggests that abdominal muscle activity is reduced by up to 40% if you walk and talk.


PEACE How much farther? Walking helps me... Use it OFMIND not lose it!

See http://equimind.org for Stuart’s Mental Health First Aid Courses.

Best thing to take

“A scarf makes for a fantastic blindfold so that you can play all kinds of games such as blindfold walking, ‘bat and moth’, ‘torch and blindfold’ or ‘know a tree’ and can even be used to carry collections of objects found during the walk,” says Youngman.

Name: Sue Milner. Age: 60-something! Lives: Eglwyswrw, Pembrokeshire. Occupation: WRVS volunteer www.wrvs.org.uk

Best game to play

“Younger children love the ‘going on a bear hunt’ game. This can get them to walk quite a long way by exploring different methods of movement – like on tip-toe or to see who can walk the ‘quietest’.” For older children, Hobbits and Camouflage Capture – games where one team tries to invade the other’s ‘camp’ – are great ones to play during breaks. “Both capture their imagination,” says Youngman.

“When I was having trouble with arthritis in my hips and knees I adopted a “use it or lose it” approach. I started to do more walking. I gradually increased the distances and the difficulty of the terrain, changed my diet, lost some weight and walked through the pain – and in time the need for painkillers has disappeared! One day my husband said casually ‘Why don’t you do the Pennine Way?’ so I decided to take up the challenge – and since then I have walked several more of the national trails: the Pembrokeshire Coast Path, the West Highland Way, the Southern Upland Way and (halves of) the Coast to Coast and Wye Valley Way. My physical fitness and stamina improved tremendously but mentally the benefits were even greater. It is just not possible to be sad, angry or depressed when walking in beautiful countryside; I feel at peace with the world. And I always walk alone so I can set my own pace and be totally selfish.”

Best thing to look for

Animal signs and tracks are the best ‘what to look for?’ activity. “This makes kids of all ages look really closely at the world around them. No matter the area through which you are walking, you are going to find some signs of animals and birds, which means there is always something to discover,” suggests Youngman.

What have you learned? “That tegederm, a dressing used for bed sores, is great for protecting against the rucksack rubbing on shoulders or hips and for blisters on the feet.”

Fit as a walker’s dog…

Dog owners are fitter than people who do not have a pooch because of the amount of walking they do. That’s according to a new study from Michigan State University, USA. Walkers who regularly exercise their four-legged friends are 34% more likely to hit the recommended exercise target of at least 150 minutes of physical activity a week. “Health campaigns promoting ownership of a dog and dog-walking may be a logical way to increase physical activity,” suggests study author Dr Matthew Reeves.

In association with

I’ve often found it difficult to vocalise my mental health problems or describe my experiences of them. It’s something that I have found incredibly frustrating over years. I self-harmed for a while because it was the only way I knew to channel my sense of frustration and anger at having a debilitating illness that I just didn’t understand at the time. I struggled with the tremendous sense of loss and injustice that something like this should happen to me. I now get from walking and physical challenges what I used to get from self-harm, but there is still a strong urge within me to articulate my feelings. Writing has proved to be a very cathartic outlet and I find it easier to write down all the emotions I couldn’t or can’t express to other people. When I wrote about my experiences of hiking the Appalachian Trail, I drew upon the parallels that arose between the journey I hiked and that of my journey to recovery. It has been a tough old slog full of ups and downs, of daily challenges and of the unforeseen. There were days when I felt I couldn’t go on any longer or wanted to give up altogether. During those moments, I found the determination to carry on by drawing strength from years of frustration at not being able to do anything. What has helped me overcome my sense of frustration and loss is looking at my life as though it were a story. I am the hero of a story of my own making and all that has happened to me is just part of my destiny. It’s up to me how I respond to life’s challenges and my actions will determine how my story reads. I would never have hiked the Appalachian Trail, nor be writing for my favourite magazine, had it not been for my mental health problems. They are part of me and my story, but not who I am and I like how my story now reads.

Photo: Angus Manning

Mental Health First-Aid instructor Stuart Skinner, who suffers from bipolar disorder, tackles the mental health benefits of walking.

Heading off for a trek with nippers tagging along? Angela Youngman, author of new book ‘Walking With Kids’ (Sigma £8.99) offers some tips to get youngsters off to a flying start.

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BACK TOLIFE 74


Discover a gorgeous Swaledale walk to a pub rescued by its village and now starring in ITV’s ‘The Dales’. Words: Mark Reid Photos: Tom Bailey

S

everal times a year I guide travel journalists from across the globe on walking tours of the Yorkshire Dales. Americans and Scandinavians are my favourite visitors as they quickly fall in love with our countryside and then articulate precisely why I love walking. The green fields, meandering paths, stone fences (as they call them) and cosy village pubs. The English village pub is as famous as red ’phone boxes and bobbies on the beat. But 25 pubs are closing their doors for good every week in this country. Most pubs that close remain so. But not the George and Dragon at Hudswell. When it closed in 2008, a group of villagers were so concerned that they formed the Hudswell Community Pub Initiative with the aim of buying the pub and

reopening it for the benefit of the community. With just 200 residents in the village, it seemed a tall order, but amazingly 77 came forward as investors, and a further 100 investors joined from near and far, including Australia, China and the USA. Sufficient funds were raised to purchase and renovate the pub, and in June last year the George & Dragon reopened its doors as a communityowned co-operative pub, a first for North Yorkshire. What the villagers of Hudswell have done is a great achievement, and gives hope for the many villages that have lost, or will soon lose, their last remaining pub. This pub is now at the heart of its community with a small library, village shop staffed by volunteers, internet

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Left: Mark Reid and pub landlady, Margaret Stubbs, admire the River Swale. Inset: Welcome to the George and Dragon!


THE

CIRCLES LINE

Walking Britain’s Inca Trail, between Stonehenge and Avebury. Words: Damian Hall Photos: Richard Faulks

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On the aptly named Walker’s Hill, passing Adam’s Grave Long Barrow.


A

s I stumble into the Dog And Gun pub Ighhg don’t think I’m being toog presumptuous in expecting a hero’s welcome. My faithful feet have carried me more than 20 miles today and I can already envisage the on-thehouse tankard of frothing mead pushed my way, pub patrons bowing in awe before me and the landlord offering me his nubile daughter’s hand in marriage and a key to his cellar. Some trumpets, too, would be fitting. “Where have you walked from?” asks a local, propped up at the bar. “Avebury,” I say, expecting the gasps of admiration and wonderment to begin. “Er, why?” asks the barfly. “There’s a regular bus service, you know,” chips in another wag. They’ve got me there. Sods. My meek reply, along the lines of “because it’s pretty,” doesn’t stand much chance of converting anyone from beer to walking boots. This public house in Netheravon, Wiltshire, is frequented by two-bit comedians but not oft frequented by walkers. Which is odd really, because it’s on Britain’s Inca Trail. Technically speaking, the history of Incas in Britain doesn’t go far beyond those voguish hats that cover your ears. But plans are well-advanced for a new long-distance trail linking the country’s two most impressive ancient sites, the World Heritage-listed Avebury and Stonehenge stone circles. It’ll be called The Great Stones Way and will meander through some of Wiltshire’s fi nest scenery; across the North Wessex Downs, through picturesque villages, along a canal, past many more Neolithic treats and there’s even a white horse thrown in for good measure. The trail makes so much sense I was genuinely shocked when I learned it didn’t exist already. That said, it does sort of exist already. You can currently walk the 30 miles between the two sites, on existing public footpaths,

95

Pockets of woodland and rocky outcrops in Bradgate Park.


vultures

Where

soar The towering peaks of the Pyrenees offer spectacular walking, and you can even get there by ferry. Words and photos: Jonathan Manning

appetite with Whet your walking m the ferry. fro s views like thi Words and photography: Matthew Pike

IT’S GREAT BECAUSE...

Snow-capped mountains, dramatic valleys, wild flowers, lush green vegetation and generally good prices.

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BUT WATCH OUT FOR...

The sweet-tasting blueberry schnapps often served before meals. It's much stronger than it tastes. Take it slowly or prepare for a monumental struggle up those hills next day‌

St Jean de Pied de Por t, final stopping place in France for pilgrims walking to Santiago de Compostela in Spain.


I

f there’s a silver lining to the cloud of seasickness, then perhaps it lies in the old sailor’s remedy of staring at the horizon. Since the ferry tweaked the tail of a hurricane in the Bay of Biscay last night, I’ve been staring fixedly towards the line where waves meet sky, desperate for land ahoy. Finally, Spain appears out of the milky gloom. Even through my bloodshot, sleepless eyes I can spy that this isn’t any old land ahoy, but a place where hills ramp up swiftly into mountains. Summits straight from the ferry are central to this walking trip. My goal is an eco-friendly, flight-free holiday, with no carbon offset required, no lengthy check-in

hassles, and no need to strip luggage back to a single pair of pants and socks to avoid excess baggage charges. Instead, I’m taking the ferry from Portsmouth to Santander, more mini-cruise than crossing, with the chance to spot dolphins and whales, a spot of fine dining, and then a leisurely drive to the mountains. Except, and it’s rather a large exception, I’ve spent the previous 12 hours poised over porcelain as waves the size of the Himalayas pummelled the ferry, tossing it like a plastic duck in a toddler’s bath. Thankfully the water is calmer closer to the Spanish coast, and I can at last dare to lift my eyes from the horizon, and examine the

maps for the walks ahead. My first basecamp will be across the border in the French Pyrenees at St Jean de Pied de Port. It’s the final stopover for walkers tackling the ancient pilgrimage to Santiago de Compostela before they cross the mighty mountain range that separates France from Spain. After my blasphemy in the Bay of Biscay last night a pilgrimage would do my mortal soul the world of good, and I feel unworthy among the united nations of pilgrims heading towards the resting place of St James the apostle. So instead I point my boots along the mighty GR10, the unprepossessing codename for the long-distance path that zig-zags

Ste Marie de Campan nestles in the valley, while on the horizon the serrated peaks mark the France/ Spain border.

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Grade Moderate

Exeter

Refreshments Lots of pubs/cafés

DEVON

Sidmouth

11

Seaton

Lyme Regis

Portland Bill

Fortuneswell

Time 4 hours

Shanklin Ventnor

St Just Penzance Sennen Land's End

St Ives

Lizard

Boscastle Tintagel

Refreshments 0 pubs/0 cafés

Holsworthy

Crediton

Exeter

PLAN YOUR ROUTE

Bude

DEVON

Salcombe

Plymouth Plympton

Kingsbridge

Honiton

Sidmouth

Exmouth Dawlish Teignmouth Newton Abbot Ashburton Buckfastleigh Torquay Paignton Totnes Brixham Dartmouth

Okehampton

Tavistock

Launceston

Wadebridge

Bodmin

Liskeard Saltash Torpoint

ROUTE

Looe Fowey

CORNWALL

St Austell St Agnes Truro Redruth Camborne St Mawes Falmouth Helston

Newquay

Padstow

Grade Challenging

DEVON COFFIN WOOD

Beware the phantom monks and ghostly funeral parties on this ‘spooky’ Devon walk…

Distance 11km/6¾ miles

02

Exmouth Dawlish Teignmouth Newton Abbot Ashburton Buckfastleigh Torquay Paignton Totnes Brixham Dartmouth

Plymouth Plympton Kingsbridge

metres

CORNWALL POLRUAN Time 4 hours

Launceston

Tavistock Liskeard Saltash Torpoint

Salcombe

Scilly Isles

Is it for me? Rough paths, tracks ancient and modern, stepping stones, boggy moorland. Suitable for agile, intrepid walkers, with appropriate skills and gear for open moorland Stiles Lots!

START/PARKING

Park off the A386, grid ref SX518835 Nearest town Tavistock Refreshments None Public toilets None Public transport Frequent buses from Tavistock and Okehampton

MAPS

Ordnance Survey Explorer OL28; Landranger 191 & 201

WWW.GOOUTDOORS.CO.UK

Seaton

Lyme Regis

Axminster

B

Tydfil MERTHYR BLAENAU GWENT MONMOUTHSHIRE Llandovery Kidwelly Hatfield Hemel Mathry NEATH Stroud Neyland Skokholm PORT TALBOT Thame Maldon TYDFIL Cirencester Lydney Aberdare OXFORDSHIRE Pontypool Hempstead Tenby Southminster Pembroke Llanelli Island Brecon Nailsworth St David's Amersham CARMARTHENSHIRE Barnet Dunmanway Glyncorrwg RHONDDA Watford Bandon Bargoed TORFAEN Bantry Faringdon Abingdon Chepstow Neath CYNON TAFF P E M B R O KEnfield E S H I R E Brentwood Carmarthen Ramsey CAERPHILLY Cwmbran Llandeilo Swansea Rayleigh High Wycombe Kinsale Cricklade Maesteg Didcot Tetbury BearStIsland Chigwell Island Dursey Island Govan's Risca Wantage Harrow Newgale SWANSEA Crickhowell Newport Pontypridd Port Abergave Marlow Caldicot Head Wallingford Haverfordwest St Clears Malmesbury GREATER LONDON Basildon Uxbridge Clonakilty Talbot Southend-on-Sea Port Eynon NEWPORT Caerphilly Narberth Henley Maidenhead Skomer Milford Ebbw Brynmawr Canvey IslandAmmanford BRIDGEND Swindon Merthyr LONDON Avonmouth CARDIFF Slough Skibbereen Island Haven Vale Blaenavo Bridgend Woolwich Tilbury Tydfil MERTHYR Kidwelly Sheerness NEATH Porthcawl BLAENAU GWENT BRISTOL MONMOU BERKSHIRE Neyland Windsor Skokholm Cardiff PORT TALBOT TYDFIL Dartford Chippenham Aberdare Pontypool Richmond Cowbridge Gravesend Reading Margate Tenby Bristol Pembroke Llanelli Staines Island VALE OF GLAMORGAN Glyncorrwg Avebury Hungerford Corsham Clevedon Rochester RHONDDA Bracknell Bargoed TORFAEN Kingston Barry Clear Island Newbury Neath CYNON TAFF Marlborough Congresbury CAERPHILLY Cwmbran Bath Melksham Swansea Ramsgate Sutton Maesteg Chatham St Govan's Croydon Sittingbourne Risca Devizes SWANSEA Weston-super-Mare Newport Pontypridd Port Woking Epsom Head Kingsclere Faversham Maidstone Camberley Talbot Sandwich Port Eynon Trowbridge W I LT S H I R E NEWPORT Caerphilly Caterham Leatherhead BRIDGEND Cheddar Sevenoaks Canterbury Basingstoke Reigate Deal Aldershot CARDIFF KENT Oxted Westbury Bridgend Lynton Lynmouth Dorking Burnham-on-Sea Porthcawl Whitchurch Frome Andover Cardiff Tonbridge Guildford Ilfracombe Redhill Farnham Lundy Minehead Warminster Cowbridge Wells Ashford East SURREY Dover VALE OF GLAMORGAN Pilton Godalming HAMPSHIRE Watchet Grinstead Barry Glastonbury Alton Amesbury Cranbrook Folkestone Braunton Congresbu Crawley Tunbridge Wells Street Bridgwater New Alresford Barnstaple Tenterden Weston-super-Mare Haslemere Mere Hythe Liphook Horsham Wilton Crowborough Winchester Wincanton New Romney SOMERSET Bideford Salisbury Haywards Heath Billingshurst South Molton Taunton Hartland Petersfield Shaftesbury Romsey Lynton Lynmouth Burnham-on-Sea Wellington Heathfield Rye Midhurst Great Torrington Uckfield Eastleigh Ilfracombe Pulborough Lundy Minehead Yeovil Ilminster Battle Dungeness EAST SUSSEX Sherborne Southampton WEST SUSSEX Hurstpierpoint Watchet Tiverton Glasto Havant Lyndhurst Arundel Crewkerne Blandford Forum Lewes Hailsham BrauntonHastings Fareham Chard Chichester Bude Bridgwater Hythe Bexhill Ringwood Worthing Hove Barnstaple Holsworthy Brockenhurst Gosport Brighton Newhaven Bognor Littlehampton Axminster Honiton Crediton Wimborne Minster Eastbourne Bideford SOMER Regis Lymington South Molton Taunton Portsmouth Seaford DORSET Hartland Bridport New Milton Okehampton Cowes Dorchester Wellington Ryde Poole Great Torrington Selsey Newport Bournemouth Wareham ISLE Ilminster Freshwater OF Tiverton WIGHT Weymouth Chard Swanage Boscastle Tintagel

Looe Fowey

CORNWALL

Bodmin

Wadebridge

PLAN YOUR ROUTE

Padstow

Newquay St Austell St Agnes Truro Redruth Camborne St Mawes Falmouth Helston Lizard

ROUTE Is it for me? Well-marked paths and lanes over undulating ground; few steep climbs Stiles 1

START/PARKING

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Beware the phantom monks and ghostly funeral parties treading the path beside you, and watch out for the flickering lights and ghoulish moans among the ancient, twisted, moss-clad trees in Coffin Wood. Picnic here – if you dare! By Ruth Luckhurst.

1 Start Go out of car park and turn R on to A836 and in 200m go R through gate on to footpath. Follow lane on to open moorland and turn R on to path which joins from L. Follow path over road, continue down track to army bunker and follow path beyond to footbridge over leat. Turn L and follow fence down to gate.

metres

01 10.1km/6¼ miles

10.1 Distance

Looking across the mouth of the River Fowey at Point 3.

St Ives St Just Penzance Sennen Land's End

downhill. Take lower fork in path and go through gate, following SWCP past Lantic Bay. Keep ahead as path begins to climb. Take L-hand fork in track and head uphill, then go L along grassy path, with wire fence R. Just before reaching road, go through gate, R, and along path to roadside.

St Saviour’s Hill car park (£5 all day), grid ref SX124508 Nearest town Looe Refreshments Several pubs and cafés, Polruan; pub at Bodinnick, near end of Point 2 Public toilets At car park and Polruan quay Public transport None to start

n medieval times, people living on the ancient tenements in the middle of Dartmoor had to trundle their dead to Lydford Church, some 12 miles away, in order to give them a decent burial. Most of this was over exposed moorland, and Coffin Wood was their first opportunity to shelter from the weather and transfer their dearly departed into a coffin, since the terrain became a little easier at this point. Much of their original route can be seen along the Lichway, between Lydford and Bellever, and this walk follows it up to Bagga Tor, before turning west again and returning to Lydford via the old tin mine at Wheal Jewell.

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MAPS Ordnance Survey Explorer 107; Landranger 200 & 201

WWW.GOOUTDOORS.CO.UK

Photo: Ruth Luckhurst

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Scilly Isles

tarting on the edge of Polruan, this satisfying circuit features a scenic section of the South West Coast Path, a visit to the church where novelist Daphne du Maurier was married and superb views across the mouth of the River Fowey. By Martin Hall. 2 3km/1¾ miles Walk along lane opposite. Pass NT car park, R, and follow lane round to L and downhill. Turn R through main gate into St Wyllow’s churchyard. Novelist Daphne du Maurier was married here in 1932. By main church door, descend steps, R, then turn L along edge of church. Go through gate and head downhill. At bend in road, go through gate and turn L, then R, to descend steps. Ignore path, L, but cross footbridge over water at Pont Pill. Walk uphill and turn L at junction of tracks. At top of hill

SOUTHERN ENGLAND

800 600 400 200 0 km 0

SOUTHERN ENGLAND

800 600 400 200 0 km 0

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1 Start Walk to end of car park, keeping sea R. Continue along road, passing school, L. Turn R at road junction to follow ‘South West Coast Path’ (SWCP) sign. Pass house, R, then go through gate, L, and follow path down incline. Go through gate by ‘National Trust’ (NT) sign and follow track as it snakes uphill. Further on, continue with wire fence, R. Ignore path to L. Go through gate and continue over undulating ground. Continue through gates and keep ahead, now with wire fence, L. Track eventually drops

Photo: Martin Hall


Start

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3 4km/2½ miles Footpath skirts Coffin Wood,

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© Country Walking May 2011

Route created using Memory-Map V5 Southern England – OS 1:50,000 Contact 0844 811 0950 www.memory-map.co.uk

5 8km/5 miles Follow track past Wheal Jewell and in 1.3km take R-hand fork through pairs of posts at intervals. Go straight on for 1.8km, ignoring tracks crossing path, until you reach metalled road. Go L to car park.

4 6km/3¾ miles Turn L and head for gate leading to next field. Go straight downhill to gate beyond, then downhill to stile at bottom, R. Turn R on to road and after 25m uphill, go L through gate. Follow lane for 600m on to open heath, then straight on for 100m. Turn R 100m up road, then L in 150m to track, R.

uphill. Turn R on to road, then L up path by Brousentor Farm. At car park below Bagga Tor, take road, R, through gate. Go downhill for 1km to footpath (stone footholds up R-hand hedge).

Buy maps at www.ordnancesurvey.co.uk/mapshop

2.5km/1½ miles Heading south-south-west, aim for trees, keep hedge to L, and after 100m pick up ‘Lichway’ signposted through field to L. Follow signs to ‘Willsworthy’, turn L at road and in 100m take track to R by farm. Go R into field at sign. ‘Corpse Lane’ follows gorse hedge to stepping stones over stream.

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12/04/2011 09:40

Ordnance Survey mapping ©Crown Copyright in association with Memory-Map/Bauer Media’s Media Licence number AM60/10

DEVON COFFIN WOOD Buy maps at www.ordnancesurvey.co.uk/mapshop

1 Start

3 5.5km/3½ miles Turn L along path, passing WWII memorial, R. Pass NT shelter, L, and stone monument, R, then follow path as it curves L and begins to climb. Cross stile and go through kissing-gate soon after. Further on, turn R through gate encountered during Point 2,

go through gate and head diagonally L across field, aiming for fence in hedgerow. Go through metal gate and cross field, keeping wire fence R. Go through two more gates, then head downhill, stone wall L. Pass ruins of Hall Chapel, R, and farmyard, R. Go through gate and along edge of field. At far corner, go over stile, R, to reach path.

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and head downhill. Retrace steps across footbridge and walk ahead for about 75m, then turn R up steps to follow NTestablished path to Polruan. Go through gate and continue up steps, which give way to muddy path running parallel with road, L. Further on, pass NT ‘Pont Pill’ sign, L. Ignore path to church, L, but head diagonally R, downhill. Soon after, take L-hand fork in path. Keep ahead at clearing and turn R along lane for about 20m, then go L on path signed to ‘Polruan’. After about 800m, path drops downhill between houses. Descend steps, R, then turn L on reaching wall. Pass cottages, L, with sea views, R. Continue to crossroads, with Polruan quay, R.

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© Country Walking May 2011

Route created using Memory-Map V5 Southern England – OS 1:50,000 Contact 0844 811 0950 www.memory-map.co.uk

4 9.5km/6 miles Walk ahead along West Street, passing church, L. At end of street, turn L along Battery Lane. Head uphill, ignoring roads off to L. Pass Old Vicarage, R, and follow road round to L. Walk up incline, as road becomes stony track, then keep ahead on grassy path, passing ruined fort, R. At junction of unmarked paths, turn L and head uphill. Turn R at marker post to return to car park.

Ordnance Survey mapping ©Crown Copyright in association with Memory-Map/Bauer Media’s Media Licence number AM60/10

CORNWALL POLRUAN

Routes 3-4 JM.indd ps * * sal.indd 2-3

Country Walking May 2011  

Welcome to Country Walking's May 2011 issue sampler. For great features and 27 fantastic mapped walks to cut out and keep every month, visit...