Breakfast not until 8:30, but it didn't matter, I had only seven miles to do with the pleasant knowledge that I was already booked into the Exmoor Forest hotel at Simonsbath.
I dawdled all the way. A distant mist prevailed so views were restricted, but atmosphere enhanced. I was soon up onto what they call a moor around here, all very pleasant but no relation to Ilkley or Goathland. Here it is largely reeds, gorse, bracken and a bit of heather, and because of its suitability for grazing animals, close cropped grass. Ponies, cows, and sheep, and their leavings were the order of the day.
A long length of the path was well evident but only about eight inches wide, and occasionally disappearing. I lost it once and ended up about fifty yards off. Even with map, gps and compass it was quite difficult to get back again across the rough terrain - you can be only ten or fifteen feet away without being able to see it.
Dropping down off the moor the attractive River Barle came into view and was then followed into Simonsbath on good paths.
Once again I have ordered a packed lunch in lieu of breakfast to be given to me tonight and I aim to get away for 7:00 am to do the last stint to Lynmouth. Getting home may be a challenge, there is no railway, and it being Sunday not much in the way of a bus. I may resort to hitch-hiking to get me to a railway station. We shall see.
A different take on dry stone walling
Very steep - there's lots of this on the TMW
Typical vegetation on the moor. The path was more established here
Typical narrow path - lose it at your peril
Close up with the Barle
A bit of the orange string I keep moaning about. Here the string was the only thing holding the gate post up. When I untied it the gate post just fell over
I sat here in peace for a while, then after I had things to myself all morning various parties seemed to appear from nowhere and so it continued into Simonsbath
My bed at the Exmoor Forest hotel - you could have a game of tennis if you could stand up
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