Since completing the WCP, today I was returning to Somerset to fill the gap between Minehead and Chepstow. I originally intended to start at Minehead and work my way west and north towards Bristol. However, the inland deviation and rather convoluted West Somerset Coastal path did not appeal to me. I therefore intended to walk from Minehead to Watchet then transfer to the beach and walk along the beach for about 4 miles to Klive then carry on to Steart. Unfortunately the tide was not quite right, I needed a low tide to occur about 11:00, which should occur in about 7 days time! My next section would have been Steart to Bridgwater, but as I would be cycling back along the A39, I thought I would keep that for a Sunday. So today would be my third option, Bridgwater to Burnham on Sea.
[UPDATE: I have just checked the England Coast path website and it seems that the 58 mile section from Minehead to Brean Down is now open]
I parked in the esplanade Pay and Display car park in Burnham on Sea and caught the 6:32 # 75 bus to Bridgwater at a cost of £3. The bus was quite busy for that time of the morning, taking people to work in Bridgwater.
I got off at East Quay and quickly made my way to the bridge over the River Parrett. I was pleasantly surprised to see that previously unmarked footpath was now festooned with England Coast Path signs with directions, mileage and acorns – the symbol of National Trails (although officially not until 2020) . This was first the time I had seen signs indicating the England Coast Path and having read a lot about the Coast Path, I was quite re-assured that something was actually being done on the ground. The signage was of good quality, frequent and was evident all the way to Burnham on Sea.
The walk today was virtually all along the sea dyke or levee; with the River Parrett twisting, turning and meandering all the way to the coast. I took very few photos, principally because I could not see a thing for the first 3 hours with fog restricting visibility to about 200m! I could not see the opposite side of the River Parrett until I approached Burnham, when finally the sun began to shine through. AND I saw swallows, diving and performing aerobatics over the River Brue. I must admit I cannot ever remember seeing them this early. As I prepared to take a photo of the Esplanade, my Sony camera packed up – for good I think!
Overall, because of the fog not a good day for sightseeing, but I did get to see swallows and be home in the afternoon to mow the lawn, for the first time this year. Managed the 15 miles in 4.5 hrs. Hoping to get back this weekend to continue filling the gap.
Distance today = 15 miles
Total distance = 1560 miles