Day 032: Fleet to Seatown

Distance: 18.07 miles

Ascent: 1866 feet

Weather: Sunny

Accommodation: Camping Anchor Inn beer Garden, Seatown


It was much colder this morning than I had been expecting, both inside the caravan and outside. I had decided last night I would have a lie in this morning, but due to the cold just decided to get dressed and get going and was out the door not long after 7:30.

The sky barely had a cloud in the sky and as I followed the lagoon, I had the moon in front of me to the west and the sun rising behind me from the east. I soon warmed up, and it really was a stunning morning with great surroundings.

The path wended its way to just south of Abbotsbury where I could see St Catherine’s Chapel perched upon a hill, I was tempted to walk up to see it, but decided unnecessary uphill walking was a stupid idea.

The path then dropped down to Chesil Beach, where I was expecting that I would have non-stop pebble walking for 4 miles or so. But I was pleasantly surprised as there was a track as far as West Bexington, from where there was about a mile of pebble walking, before it headed up onto the low cliffs for a short while.

At Hive beach as it was low tide, I decided to walk along the beach and from my OS map could see a little river where the path diverted inland a short while from the beach. When I reached this I decided I could just cross it rather than divert inland and add unnecessary mileage. What I should have done is take shoes and socks off wade across and then dry my feet and put my boots back on. But I decided that I may be able to walk straight through, and with not to long to go today it wouldn’t matter if my boots got a little damp. Well one step in the boots filled up and then I just went for it. This was a little stupid but caused no real issue as was near the end of the day and my boots are currently drying by a fire.

I soon reached West Bay which is a lovely little town, with a small harbour and some interesting buildings. The only thing that lets it down is the Alton Townesque food booths with there ridiculously tacky exteriors.

From West Bay it was back onto the cliffs proper, and the climb up to Thorncombe Beacon was one of the hardest yet, though the view at the top was stunning. At the top two ladies asked what I was doing, posed for a photo and very kindly made a donation to the charity (I will get this backpack poster sorted soon and then there will be many more donations on route).

From this peak it was a short, sharp descent down to Seatown where I would be staying for the night. The Anchor Inn right on the coast had kindly let me pitch in their beer garden, and the pub with it’s warm fire was the perfect place to write up this diary. This pub does have a stunning location, with the sun setting as I arrived I cannot imagine many nicer places to enjoy an evening pint.

So, a simple day, with the sun shining all day. I am awaiting the arrival of Malcolm and Eddie this evening who will be joining for the next couple of days.

charles compton