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Wednesday, 31 August 2011

Dunkery Hill - Exmoor - 1.82 miles

You may look at the title and think, hmm that's not particular a long walk I wonder why she felt the need to publish a blog about that. Well, as its my blog it matters to me and as a personal achievement it doesn't matter how big or small or what view you have or where in the world it is, what matters is that sense of achievement that hits you when you reach your destination.

We found ourselves driving through exmoor and parked up at a spot that had an amazing view.
We had just finished making and eating some free range scrambled eggs, the sun was dropping but not too fast and there is only so much exmoor pony watching you can do sat on the heather at the side of the camper van. So we decided to put on our walking shoes and wander over to the marker beacon to see where a couple of people had strolled along up too.

The sign said Dunkery Hill 3/4 miles, so there and back should be doable, before the sun went down. Whilst we could see the beacon in the distance higher than we stood, we knew an ascent would be needed and that it might be a little tight on the thighs, but we decided to have a go at reaching the beacon.

Whilst the path was easy to follow, the stones underneath were loose, and the mud around them dry and cracking in most places. Once the little one fell and put his hand down to steady himself and had i not been holding onto him he would have fallen. In a few patches the ground was soggy and wet but would pose no problem if you had proper shoes on. As the sun was coming down a little bit more, we carried on upwards. Surprisingly your view changed quiet a bit as you walked up, you lost the view of the road where we were parked and you could see the water on the other side of the hills, across the water to wales.
 At the top of  the hill is the monument commemorating the handover to the National Trust., and of course no better marker than here to make a memento of the climb you have just made!
The views as you catch your breath are amazing, and a complete 360 degree turn and the picture changes with every angle.
 The stillness of the air, the quietness and the sun glowing in the background was fab, added to which the sense of pride that our 5 year old son (who had already walked 5 miles that day) had walked on up with us, made for a lightness in our steps on the way down. You do need to be steady on the way down though but take time to look up from your feet and glance around, the view was why you walked up there.

Date: 28th August 2011
Total walk: 1.82miles / 2.9 km
Descent: 0 ft
Ascent: 299 ft
Average pace:  28.56 mins a mile
Accompanied: Gary Bygrave and JP


  1. It's certainly a far reaching view. The heather looks beautiful down your way. I really like the way you write your blog Debbie, thanks for following mine :)

    regards norm

  2. I like the photo of the view towards the sea; something I certainly don't get to see when I'm walking in the Peak District.