Friday 25 to Tuesday 29 August 2017 – Bank holiday walking weekend based in Exeter

Friday 25 August 2017
40 Polyramblers for this weekend in sunny Devon. After a train journey to Exeter St Davids, we took taxis to our accommodation in Holland Hall at the University of Exeter. We did an orientation walk on the campus and took the bus to central Exeter for a walk to the cathedral and the Quayside area then went back to our lodgings by bus. We had a nice evening meal in Holland Hall dining room and went to bed looking forward to 3 daily walk options.Saturday 26 August 2017
The 14 Hickers went by coach to Lustleigh in Dartmoor National Park. Leaving the village, we climbed through woods, reaching moorland where we saw some ponies and admired the beautiful views. The walk was undulating with steep ascents and descents. We had lunch after a difficult crossing of a river on large boulders. We stopped for a drink in the pub in Lustleigh before continuing our walk on lanes and a disused railway to Bovey Tracey where we had another drink in a pub while waiting for the coach. The Strollers took the train to Totnes and went on a scenic cruise to a very busy Dartmouth where they followed the Town Trail. The Inbetweeners did a 5 mile circular walk (probably very challenging according to the leader!) in the Dartington Estate followed by a 1 mile heritage trail of Totnes.

Sunday 27 August 2017
Busy day for the 18 Hickers. After a scenic train journey to Totnes, a walk through the historic town and a taxi ride to Cornworthy, we walked to Dartmouth following undulating paths (this means many ups and downs!) through scenic countryside. We stopped for a drink in a lovely pub in Dittisham with beautiful views of the River Dart estuary. Lunch was up a hill, again with lovely views. We had time to look around Dartmouth before returning to Totnes by boat. We had dinner there and made our way to the station to discover that our train was delayed, then cancelled. We finally reached Exeter by taxi quite late. The Inbetweeners took the train to Topsham and walked around the historic town before taking the ferry across the estuary and walking back to Exeter along the ship canal towpath. The Strollers took the train to Teignmouth. They then walked along the seafront to the Teignmouth to Shaldon ferry and, from Shaldon, did a circular walk up to the Beacon to admire fine views over the estuary and coast.

Monday 28 August 2017
A beautiful, hot, sunny day for a walk on the moor for the Hickers and Inbetweeners. We travelled by coach to Widecombe where the Hickers walked from tor to tor: Top Tor, Saddle Tor, Hay Tor and Hound Tor before dropping down to Widecombe for a drink / afternoon tea or both. The Inbetweeners did a walk on top of the moor which was covered in heather and buzzing with insects. After walking at the foot of a few tors, they met with the Hickers and also dropped down to Widecombe for a drink / afternoon tea or both. The Strollers took a train to Exmouth and walked to the marina to catch the ferry to Topsham for lunch and a short walk and returning to Exeter by train.

Tuesday 29 August 2017
Two options for our last day which was distinctly cooler and cloudier. The walkers took a train to Starcross, walked north along the estuary and inland around Powderham Castle before rejoining the estuary for a seawall walk to the Turf Inn. We took the ferry to Topsham where a few of us had time to visit the nice museum before returning to Exeter by train. The Strollers did some sightseeing or shopping. Then it was time to catch our train back to London after an excellent weekend in Devon.