Three fabulous days: the first time I’ve tried the route from north to south. We got a lift to Lynmouth on the Saturday, so could set off at a reasonable time on the Sunday.
Day One ended at The Royal Oak at Withypool (wonderful place to stay). Eighteen glorious miles across Exmoor, first following the East Lyn river and then Hoaroak Water to the Chains ridge, with wonderful views along the way. Treated ourselves to delicious coffee and cake at Boevey’s Tearooms in Simonsbath, and ended the day wandering along the Barle Valley, one of the most beautiful stretches on the whole Coast to Coast Walk.
Day Two not quite so good: 23 miles to Witheridge via Tarr Steps, Hawkridge and Knowstone, in non-stop rain! No refreshments available after Tarr Steps, but we stocked up at Withypool Stores in advance – and were invited into The Masons Arms at Knowstone for a cuppa when spotted standing outside resembling drowned rats. That sorted us out for the next eight miles to Witheridge, where the lovely people at the Mitre Inn dried us out. Great food and drink and a wonderfully comfortable night set us up for the next stretch (another eight miles) to Morchard Bishop and tea at the very well-stocked Church Street Stores.
You get a fabulous view of Dartmoor from the churchyard of St Mary’s, which would have drawn us on had we been walking further. (And that was when we realised that we should have left a car in MB so that we could drive back to Sandford, where we had left both our cars… which would have neatly avoided a further seven miles of walking!)