South-eastern part, I'm now entering Devon....
14/5 Once again, I sleep
perfect - although
a bit too long. In a matter of fact; I sleep twice as long as I do
at home. It is a bit of a crispy morning, but the sun peaks through
a few times, promising more.
I find the cross countryside route towards Corfe Castle. It leads me
through narrow hedged lined one-lane roads. When the road passes one
of the many mansions and castles, it is miles of brick-walls. It
start to brighten up, and it is a sunny day, when I reach my first
It is Alum Chine, and once again, I have to pay three pound just
to park. First, I do the forest covered gorge, leading from the
seaside right into Bournemouth city. It is dog-walkers heaven, but
little for me to see.
Back at the seaside, I find the few patches on the steep hillside,
which are covered in plants from The Canary Islands, Mexico, New
Zealand and Himalaya. Some are lovely and filled with flowers, but
here are no unfamiliar to me.
The tea which should be accompanied with a lunch sandwich comes with
a caramel cheese cake, but I'm to polite to complain.
The cable ferry brings me cross
the bay and right into Studland Heath. Here, the heather
dominates, but also other wild flowers have found a foothold. Birch
and willow are the only trees, and due to the sandy soil, not that
big at all. A few ponds make the scenery even more interesting.
From here, it is a real nice drive to the ancient Corfe Castle. On
the way, the huge limestone hills offers a fantastic view over the
bay and seaside.
Corfe Castle is located on a tall hill, in the middle of two even
bigger hills. I don't feel like paying three pound for the parking
and additionally eight for the interior of the ruins. Instead, I
park nearby, and do the long walk around the hill. The path leads me
through the nearby village, which is teaming with mainly English
tourists. The open fields behind the cemetery leads to one of the
other hills, and a path head all the way to the top.
Rabbits sits and enjoy the sun under the blackberries, and the cheep
grasses on the waste fields. Ravens fly over it all, and the view to
the ruins are perfect. I fare from feel I missed anything, but the
children's screaming with in the walls.
From here, the road leads in
zigzag through steep limestone hills. Orchids can be found along the
road, and other flowers' bright colours lighten up the green grass
along the road. I do a short detour to Wareham and a breath walk to
find an ATM and some fresh food for dinner.
It is a lovely route the GPS have found. Winding roads, deep
forests, rich grassland, tiny villages and way too soon, I reach Lulworth Cove.
It is a natural limestone harbour, set in a astonishing landscape.
And a popular place for the locals, it seems. Everyone pay the four
pound to be aloud to park on the grass, for up to two hours. I
guess the campsites are cheap after all?
The limestone have been folded by the ages, and several "windows"
make a great playground for the kayakers. I start the steep walk to
Durdel Door, a natural arch. It is a steep path leading over yet
another limestone hill. Half way, at the top, one can see the
"door". Considering the long way down to it, not to speak of the way
back, I settle for that distant look.
The nearby castle, which does look impressive from the outside, is
apparently closed today. Well, next on the list is Maiden Castle,
and I guess I manages to miss one caste from time to time. I get a
picture from outside, and head on.
It have passed four, and I start
looking for a campsite. Finally, a caravan park offer room for tents
as well, and I get several acres all to my self. The meadow and
forest draws me in, the blue forest button especially. The river
is a obstacle, and to avoid wet feet, I follow the hedge to a
on the other side, my foot disappears into some real
deep mud. A few barbwire fences and a blackberry scrubber later, and
I'm in the blue forest.
Back at camp, I detect a Wi-Fi, but have to go to the reception to
get password. While I'm there, I get to use a nice common room to
work in. Just as I'm about to leave for dinner, I discover that I - once
again - have forgotten to turn on the plug. Good thing I have a new
Mac, able to work for approximately 20 hours, and I can charge in
the car within one and a half.
Dinner at the car, but I return to the common room to work through
the evening. This time, it is not freezing cold, and I spend time
enough in the car as it is. The only sound I hear from the camp
ground, are several blackbirds and a few finches.
15/5 Despite I just saw a
tropical garden, it is a cold night -
real cold. I barely get any sleep, but remain in bed in the morning,
hoping for the sun to heat up the car and eventually the world. Half
pass nine, I give up, and faces the world. The manager tell me, it
have been a very unusually 3C during the night. Considering I'm
heading up north to the highlands of Wales, the first task - after
breakfast - is finding a duvet.
First, I try in the nearby Dorchester, but the locals doubt I'll
find it here. Never the less they give me a few shops to look in.
Unfortunately, it is Sunday, and I'm way too early. I see the town
centre, and find a boot marked on my way out. A mix of home-grown
herbs, second-hand trash and slightly useful stuff and some
first-hand of the same category.
I head out to another nearby town, and find their
Tesco, but they have duvets as a seasonal good, and this is not the
season. I try a few other of the places I'm recommended, but no
luck. I recon I spend time enough on the subject, and hopefully, it
will just turn up - before I need it again.
Back on track, the first sight of
the day is Maiden Castle. The largest and most complex Iron Age in
Britain, where the oldest part is from 500BC. It is the size of 50
football pitchers, but seems even bigger. One of them many huge
limestone hills have been fitted with three rampants of considerable
size. It was
captured by the Romans in 43 AD, and now, it is only
inhabited by sheep. I do a long walk, and enjoy the warm sun, in
contrast to the cold wind. I desperately try to capture the huge
complex, but without an air balloon or drone, it can't be done in one frame.
From here, I do a slight detour
to Weymouth. Both to look
a duvet and to catch the costal road on my way to Jurassic Coast. It
is a rather large city which seems to be build along the nice beach.
It is already packed, and one can only imagine how busy here will be
later in the summer.
On the way out, the Water Garden lours me in, but I settle for a cup
of tea and a sandwich, looking into the garden.
I did plan to start the Jurassic Coast at Chesil Beach, which is 30 kilometres
long, and 15 metres tall. It moves inland by five meters in 100
years. It is called Jurassic Coast due to all the fossils which can
be found in the clay, especially Lyme Regis is
worth a stop.
Due to the fact, it is Sunday and sunshine, the rest of England and
a better part of Scotland seems to be here. I completely fail to
find a parking lot. I try again at the harbour, but here are full as
well. I would like to
see the fossil museum, and I guess I have better luck, returning
Ten kilometres down the
there seems to be another access to the coast, and I give it a try.
I find some real narrow back-roads with grass in-between the wheel
tracks, and some huge, green hills and cosy landscape in general.
Some fields are completely blue, others yellow, covered in flowers. A few times I meet
other cars, many old Lotus 7s and alike. The trails eventually lead
It is a rather small port town, but on the way in, I spot a huge
Tesco, and give it a try. The have several duvets and I even
remember to buy some ingredients for my dinner. Worse which can
happen now is; I won't need the duvet.
The harbour is teaming, but only with locals. Many in Wellingtons,
and a mug of tea is only 0,70 in contrast to the usual 2-3 pound.
Here are crab-traps and small boats, and kids fish crabs on the
Further out is Haven Cliffs, a National Nature Reserve. Only a few
people walk to the rolling stones on the beach, and they are looking for fossils. I
try not to, and concentrate on the flora. Here are a few plants I
haven't seen before, and the area is interesting in general. I
finish the visit with a mug of tea, looking odd without Wellingtons.
On the way back to the camp in Rousdon, I spotted
half way to Lyme Regis, I do a short stop at a tiny village; Axmouth.
A small creek runs through town, and the wall along with it is
teaming with flowering plants. The little church, several inns and
the houses in general make some great motives, although the sun
refuses to cooperate.
A bit further back, I pass a huge mansion and its forest. The
shoulders of the narrow road is one lush flowerbed, and so are many
of the fields.
I reach the camp at four, and go for a walk along the roads. several
interesting plants grow on the shoulders and in the walls. Here,
like anywhere else I have been in England, the few busses are all
Back at camp, I prepare my dinner, then start working. Here are no
common room, and the benches outside are both too bright and too
cold to be sitting at. I remove the steering wheel, and have a
perfect working station.
Strangely enough, I'm finish at seven. While the car was nice and
warm to sit in, the outside is not. The sun have returned, but with
significantly less strength, and looses big to the chill wind. Here is no internet,
and I can't get my smart-phone to connect. Guess I'm alone with a
noisy cow on a nearby field.
16/5 I wake up in the early morning,
feeling a bit cold. I crack open the duvet, and it almost fills the
car! No chance I ever get that genii back in the bag. But it sure
warms, and I have to pull my self together to get up for an early
start. From here, the limestone changes into clay, some hardened by
time and pressure.
I reach Lyme Regis at eight, and head for the
beach. It is low tide, and the beach is almost empty. I head towards
the tall cliffs, which look like a layer cake with shifting layers
of harden and soft clay. The area is called Jurassic Coast World
Heritage Site - or at least, that is what it is. This is where the
famous Mary Anning started the fussil-aera.
Quite soon, I find the first fussils, and when you know where to
look, they are numerous! Some are in almost black, real soft stones,
other in lighter and harder stones. I take a lot of pictures, but
only collect a single. It is a perfect sunny morning, and a few
fussil collecters and dog walkers have now found their way out on the
After some time, I have fussilised enough, and return to the
promenada for a mug of tea.
I time it just to the little and
cosy museum opens. Here are everything from local history, dating
back 20.000 years to the war. And of cause fossils dating back 100s
of millions years. The building it self are fantastic. Although
tiny, everything from a castle seems to been fitted it. The displays
are traditional, but well made.
My parking-meter is running out, and the sunshine draws me back on the road.
I have quite some way to go to Dartmoor, and make it partly by some bigger
roads, like the M5. Occasionally, I make small detours thought the
countryside, but it have not changed that much - yet!
The photos from the last three days form
Slide Show; kind of Devon.
in the village of Chagford, just for a cup of tea and
a look at the wonky thatches and cosy buildings. A creek is running
through town, offering some great motives. So do the church,
although they tend to look alike by now. The shops are lovely, and I
wished, I could get photos without the cars in front.
I've been looking for some sort of heater for tea-water. Here are,
as I expected, some tracker's shops. Or some of the shop have stuff
for trackers. I find one which seem to have everything. Here are
china, modern tools, walking sticks, all kind of kitchen ware,
screws by the piece and more. Well; everything! He almost thought he had sold
the last little alcohol burner, but find one in the back of another
shell. A enamel-mug and a bottle of alcohol along with a lighter,
and I'm set. Well, I have to come up with a wire holder for the mug,
but that is the fun part.
I celebrate my abilities to "cook" tea my self - by buying some. I
have seen signs with "Cream Tea", and I figure it is time to try it.
It is two scones with raisins, jam and whipped crème, close to
butter, accompanied by tea of cause. Delicious! The Devon way is
cream on the scone, jam on the top, while the Cornwall one is
The little teahouse is a tale by it self. Only four tables with
room for four people at each. The interiors seems as ancient as the
exterior - and that is old. The menu is extensive to say it least.
So many forms of coffee, chocolate, shakes, teas, cakes, toffees,
fudges, scones and a lot other with giga calories in.
I am now entering
National Park, which covers 95.000 hectare
(roughly 30x30 km) and have 1200 kilometres of public walkways. I
settle for a few. In contrast to what else I have seen, this is
granite country. Way more rough and unpolished than the limestone.
Some of the huge boulders are overgrown with Navelwort; Umbilicus rupestris,
growing in the mosses, while Violas prefer the richer soil. The road
leads upwards, and it seems like most is above 250 metres of height.
As I assent, the sun disappears; real un-sporty.
Next waypoint through these huge moor is the
Bronze age village of Grimspound, way out in the countryside.
The remains is the circular stone wall, which have surrounded the
village and a bit of the houses. More small circles from huts are
found in a bigger area. The creek seems to be lined with rocks as
well, and pathways are sealed with flat stones up to the hilltop. A
few farms can be seen around, but the area is sparsely populated
these days. Plenty of larks and a few coo-coos ad to the atmosphere.
A bit further out on the moor, the little village
of Widecombe is the home to only 566 people,
living in 15th-century houses. Here seems to be more parking lots
than anything else. Guess here is little to make money on anyway.
buss with Dutch elders try to entertain them self, and after I have
done the short loop in town, making photos of the church and a few
other buildings, I head on. Another tiny path leads me back to the "big road"
and Postbridge, home to 170 people and a 13th-century
bridge. It is made from three meter long slabs, placed on stacked
stones. It crosses the East Dart River, and make some real great motives.
The "new" bridge right next to it make additional motives. At first,
I have to wait for the Dutch to get back in their bus. It seems like
they are standing on both bridges, waiting for the other half to
clear off. I can wait, and that pays off, despite the lack of sun.
I had not expected it to be this great.
Further down south, the Medieval Stone Rows
are several gatherings of stones, forming circles, parallel rows, a menhir, burial chambers and the base of round huts. The sun peaks
through a few, short minutes, while I walk the endless field. A
small creek cuts it's way down to the bedrock, and larks sings
The road towards Travistock descents
steeply, and offers a fantastic view. After a 200 meter vertical
drop, it is back to the last of Devon, and then
the trail now leads me in to the
Cornwall. The hills seem even bigger, but I will wait
untill tomorrow, to have a closer look. Right now, I like to get
closer to Eden Project, and find a camp-site.
I walk to the nearby village and the pub. Figured I rather spend the
money on food than paying five pound for internet at the camp. End
up with spending some more, but I get a great Spicy Mixed Beans with
veggies, a fantastic cake with caramel and tea and a free internet.
While I sit at the pub, I expect Barnaby to enter any minute. At
eleven, I'm kicked out in the cold night.
I knew I shuld have brought my swetter, and it is real cold, walking
back in the dark.
To add to the missery, I choose a wrong way in the pitch plack
night, and end up at the bigger road. At least, the hour af cold,
nightly walking give me a glimpse of a badger and a hedshog.
Apparently, it is not the time of year for the foxes to make their
photos from Dartmore sights can be found in the
From Devon, I head south into the
even warmer Cornwall in the next page.