Day 11: Sidmouth to Beer

This day had pretty strenuous walking as creeks cut into plateaus; we climbed up and then down 5 tall hills, 2000 ft. of ascent total. A lot of it was steep, so the trail builders made steps, but they were often mean 14″ steps, or tiny 5″ steps, sometimes they were long enough for two footsteps each, and sometimes they were narrower than our feet. It slowed us down and hurt the knees and ankles. Over the course of the day the sun came out and hid, the wind blew and stopped, the rain sprinkled and stopped; so we had lots of adjustment to clothes. But the scenery was fantastic, and we saw cows, sheep, and even pigs.

As the day progressed, the cliffs changed from the reds of the Jurassic stone we’d been walking with for two days, to yellows and then whites like the Cliffs of Dover.†

Geared up and ready to leave Sidmouth. The tractor was clearing a stream mouth.
Dog houses holding winches for small fishing boats. (Liza thinks the dogs are all named Max.)
Farewell, Sidmouth!
Do we go left or straight? This day was full of forks in the road. And steps.
Liza, bluebells, and steps.

Flat top. There were herds of sheep on both sides of this valley.

Ocean, Ben, and steps.
Looking back at the hill in the previous photo.

Did we mention the steps?

One of the hills took us all the way down to Weston Beach, at Weston Mouth (I assume it’s on the River Weston; they’re pretty redundant with the naming ;), which was pebbled and lovely. We were only on the beach for about 30 feet before the trail took us back up the other side. Here’s the trickle of the Weston River:

Our lunch spot.

Tea gardens are always a welcome sight. This one is at the river mouth near Branscombe (it’s called Branscombe Mouth). We indulged in a piece of awesome gluten-free chocolate orange cake and coffee. Note the thatched roof! In the towns, we passed several Master Thatchers’ vans.
Leaving tea garden, Liza chose not to ford the creek.
Not-bad-looking mobile homes.
The cliffs are white.
See the yellow striations below the white?

Approaching Beer Head.

Walking in to the village of Beer. That’s our hotel and the end, the Bay View Inn. After 10 miles and a million steps, it was a sight for sore eyes!
Looking out our window towards the harbor.

It was a long walk with a LOT of views.