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WALKING GROUP

Newsletter January - March 2017

This Newsletter is available (with all the pictures) from this link.

Start of another year and 16 have already joined me for the easy stroll along the river.

It is our 12th Anniversary in February and we have already notched our 250th walk, clocked over 22,500 people miles with 4000+ punters on the walks.

Why not join Mike and Suzanne on the 30th January and help us push on to reaching a total equal to the circumference of the earth – sometime this year.

Trevor

January 2017


Walk Dates:

Fri 6th January

Mon 30th January

Tues 14th February

Thur 23rd February

Mon 6th March

Wed 29th March (OVA)

Fri 31st March

join us
 
Join Us!

Forthcoming Meetings

10.00am Friday, 6th January

Exeter Riverside Park - ¾ mile

Meet 10.00 (NOTE TEN O’CLOCK) at Piazza Terracina on the Quay.

A gentle stroll along the valley ending at Double Locks for a late coffee or early lunch.

Trevor


10:30am Monday, 30th January

Penstone (Nr. Coleford) - 8 miles

PACKED LUNCH REQUIRED

Start : Car parking area on edge of Penstone ( SS 774 004 ). From Exeter take the A377 to Crediton, continue on the A377 for 2 miles to a turning on the left signposted to Coleford. In 2 miles, after going under a railway bridge, you enter Coleford. Go through the village to a cross roads, turn left and in 1/2 mile turn left on to road to Penstone and in 1/4 mile there is a sharp left turn and the parking area is on the right immediately after going under a bridge.

Distance : 8 miles

Terrain : Mixture of footpaths, tracks and quiet lanes, with access mainly by gates but there are some stiles.

Route : Penstone car parking area ~ Penstone ~ Brocks Cross ~ Whelmstone Cross ~ Walson Cross ~ Appledore Farm ~ Paschoe Farm ~ Ford Farm ~ Butsford Barton ~ Brocks ~ Colebrooke ~ Penstone

Details : Bring a picnic lunch. The route passes Paschoe House, a Grade II Listed 19th Century Tudor Gothic style house, which is due to open as a boutique hotel with a fine dining restaurant and events venue in August 2017 (http://paschoehouse.co.uk). There will be an opportunity to have a look at the 15th Century wood carving in St. Andrew’s Church in Colebrook (http://www.devon.gov.uk/historiccolebrooke).

Mike & Suzanne


10.30am Tuesday, 14th February

Harpford Common - 7 miles

PACKED LUNCH REQUIRED

Meet at 10.30 in the car park on Harpford Common on the A3052 (SY058898)
7 miles of not too strenuous walking.
Route: Harpford Common, Newton Pop, River Otter, Colaton Raleigh and Colaton Raleigh Common. (I think!)

Judy


10.00am Thursday, 23rd February

Newton St Cyres - 7 miles

PACKED LUNCH REQUIRED

Meet at TEN o’clock at the village hall car park in Newton St Cyres.
Newton is on bus route 5 to Crediton. The no 5 bus to Crediton via Newton St Cyres leaves the Bus Station at 9.14 and 9.34 reaching Newton St Cyres 18 minutes later.
Length of walk – about 7 miles, on a reconnoitre we took 4 hours including a coffee break at the radio mast. We could plan for coffee towards the top of Whiptail Wood, and a picnic lunch by the radio mast, before the descent back to Newton.
This is an excellent circular walk which traverses the woods and hills/valleys to the south of the village using the only public foot/bridle-path shown on the OS map. It rises from 35m in Newton to 245m at the Waddles Down Radio mast from which there are superb views of Exeter.  The gradients are not too steep, but there is an uneven and potentially slippery section along the Shuttern Brook in Northridge Copse. The other possible tricky part is in the descent from Waddles Down through Newton Wood. Here the track had been used by heavy vehicles for forestry work, and they left deep ruts which were semi-filled with very wet mud: boots and trekking poles advised!! (I will check the conditions nearer the time of the scheduled walk to see if they have improved).
The final leg of the walk takes us through a grassy field, where some of Mary Quicke’s “girls” feed as preparation for her cheesemaking, and an apple orchard beside West Holme.
There is a good café at Quicke’s farm run by Cakeadoodledo – open for breakfast and lunch to about 3pm.
Edward Maunder


10.30am Monday, 6th March

Holcombe Rogus Circular - 6 miles (if dry, 7 mile opt)

PACKED LUNCH REQUIRED

Holcombe Rogus circular.
Meet at the car park, Station Road bridge, Burlescombe (ST 0694 1706)
Follow canal north to Fenacre Bridge; follow footpath to Holcombe Rogus (coffee break in churchyard); follow road (take care it is narrow) to Waytown Tunnel; out and back along the canal to Brinscott (boring to repeat the track, but it is the only way to see the end of the canal); Follow footpath back to Fenacre Bridge (early lunch at Whipcott bridge); from Fenacre Bridge follow path to the ruined abbey; follow disused railway to canal and back to start.  (Option to walk to Ebear Bridge through Westleigh and return along canal, passing the planned link to Exeter Canal which never happened.)
David and Tina


10.30am Friday, 31st March

Exe Valley Way - 5 or 6 miles

PACKED LUNCH REQUIRED

A linear walk, parking opposite the pub at Exebridge, then filling up the cars to drive to the other side of Dulverton. There’s a small car park at Marsh Bridge. We return on the Exe Valley way to Exebridge. The walk is only 5 miles, but can be lengthened to 6+. Will give you more details nearer the time.
The pub at Exebridge, The Anchor, is open at 10am for coffee & toilets.
Christine


Extra Walk

Margaret Read is leading a walk for the Otter Vale Association from Clifford Bridge along the Teign during daffodil time. UERSA members are cordially invited.

10.00am Wednesday, 29th March

Clifford Bridge - 6 miles

Meet at 10.00 at the new car park at Clifford Bridge about 100 yards from the bridge
(SX 782898). There is also parking near the bridge. There will be a small number from OVA.

Bring a picnic to eat after the walk or go to a local pub. No dogs please.
Margaret Read

Previous Walks

For reports and pictures of all previous years, please see the Walking Group section on the Newsletters and Archives page.

For further information please contact Trevor Preist at preist.exeter@blueyonder.co.uk

Recent walks 2016

(The PDF file of the current Newsletter contains all the pictures)
Tedburn St Mary, 6th October
Fourteen gathered in the village hall car park for Mike’s walk on a beautiful autumn day although there was a keen easterly wind. Once we got started and warmed up we didn’t seem to notice it any more as we descended into a sheltered wooded valley walking alongside the Lilly Brook. Eventually we climbed up to Posbury and lunched at the small church built to alleviate the crowding of services in Crediton (regularly over 700).
As we finished Mike warned us that the worst was yet to come with two ridges to cross. The first was a long climb up to Oldridge giving splendid views when we reached the top. Another descent and a shorter climb took us back to Tedburn.
Many thanks to Mike and Suzanne (who was sweeper at the rear) for a very enjoyable walk in an area little explored by the group.
Trevor
Scorhill, Dartmoor, 27th October
John's well-planned walk from Scorhill Farm gave us a delightful day's outing on Dartmoor. First there was the tension of driving down narrow lanes, impossible to pass if one meets anyone, and then the sudden realisation of arrival at the little car park. We were a select band of 8, well placed to enjoy John's account of stone circles, stone rows, clapper bridges and the Longstone, all of which helped to conjure up a sense of the activities of life on Dartmoor over the centuries.
KesTor was our lunch stop, well chosen because it provided shelter from a breeze that was becoming quite fresh. One of the special delights of the walk was the way in which, with the sun shining out, we were from time to time able to enjoy stunning wide-angled views of the moor and its autumnal colours, which a camera can never really capture. An excellent 'taster' walk to encourage us in our further explorations with UERSA this autumn.
Doug and Pam Sedge
Belstone, Dartmoor, 15th November
The eleven joining Jan on Dartmoor found that the promised fog was much less than anticipated so Plan B was abandoned and we reverted to Jan’s much preferable Plan A. It was misty with rare hints of sunshine.
We took the Tarka Trail road out of Belstone and then the track leading to Old Rectory Farm. Then on open moorland we made steady progress gradually up Scarey Tor and Cullever Steps where we paused for a break. We then approached the military area above Okehampton meeting a number of army personnel. They later passed us in vehicles (couldn’t keep up with us?) as we took the road to East Hill and on to West Cleave where we had lunch in a very pretty valley.
As we dropped to the river below I realised that we were now on David Hobbs’ favourite walk up the East Okement River in West Cleave.
We enjoyed the beautiful autumn colours as we climbed steadily and then we were soon out on the moor close to Belstone.
Thanks, Jan, for a beautiful walk
Trevor
Annual Lunch Walk, Lamb Inn, Longdown, 23rd November
After the storms and rain of the weekend (4 inches – the usual amount for the whole of November) it was a great relief to have a bright dry day for the Annual Lunch Walk. Twenty five gathered at the Village Hall car park in Longdown for the start of the pre-lunch stroll. 
This took us along a pleasant track down to the bottom of the valley where the mud was not too bad and then a steady climb up a large field to the road. From then on it was a gentle contour walk back to the car park and then down to the Lamb Inn.
Twenty seven gathered there for lunch which by chance coincided with the 250th walk of the group and among the 24 who walked lurked (somewhere) the 4000th participant.
Lunch was a very jolly occasion and I am very grateful to the Chairman for the gift of a bottle of wine. Not really necessary – you are (mostly) a pleasure to organise and the challenging bits help to keep the dementia away.
Trevor
Bovey Tracey (Templer Way), 5th December
Thirteen started Pete's walk from Bovey Tracey on Monday 5 December 2016, ten having travelled to Bovey Tracey by bus. For most of the route the walk followed the original route of the Templer Way, which has been re-routed in some places and it was disconcerting to sometimes be walking in the opposite direction to the signposts for the Way, but with Pete's navigational skills we were able to enjoy a varied route with many interesting historical features relating to the granite Tramway and the Stover Canal used to transport granite from Haytor to Teignmouth. The information boards at each of the main features helped to understand how it worked and to admire the construction skills of the 19th Century workers. In contrast to these industrial scenes a very pleasant picnic lunch was enjoyed in the Stover Country Park, overlooking one of the lakes, with its abundant bird life, and appreciating Pete's choice of a picnic spot complete with enough picnic tables for the whole group, setting a high standard for future walks. After lunch two members returned by bus from Stover to Exeter, while the remainder continued along the Templer Way to Newton Abbot, arriving just in time to catch the bus back to Bovey Tracey and on to Exeter.
Mike