Sunday, 5 August 2012

Coastwalk , South West Coast Path

Wembury → Wonwell

towards-yealm.png Distance: 10.9 miles
Ascent: 346 metres
Duration: 4 hours 25 minutes

The river
« Plymouth | Bigbury-on-Sea »

Today's walk started in a very similar vein to yesterday's, with a river to cross after the first couple of miles.

yealm-pool.pngAnd again, as she did yesterday, Mum joined us as far as the jetty. Here the method to call the ferry wasn't a shout, but the revealing of a white disc on the side of the quay. Before too long we were joined by another couple heading the same way, and a little later the boat appeared.

em-barley.pngThe middle section of the walk wasn't particularly exciting at all. So we'll skip over the description of the Lord Revelstoke's Drive which swept the path along to his old manor, or the slightly more strenuous path east of Stoke House. Perhaps the middle section wasn't exciting because we knew what was coming: another river, only this time one without a ferry service.

The River Erme has to be forded. There's a two-hour window at low tide, but talking with locals on the beach at Mothecombe suggested that not many people do this.


The water was warm, but flowing fast. It was a couple of hundred metres across and came up to our knees at the deepest point. The occasional piece of seaweed brushed against our legs. This was exhilarating walking, unlike any other.

We reached the far side and decided to stop. Our intended destination of Bigbury-on-Sea was another five miles away, but it seemed right to end the walk with this climax of crossing the river. Besides, stopping now meant we got to wade back to the western side where Mum was waiting with the car. It also gave us the opportunity to take a few photographs now that we knew what to expect.

I'm well aware of the dangers of water, especially wide, fast-flowing rivers. But I can't wait to do something like this again.

Posted by pab at 18:25 | Comments will be back one day. Please email me instead!