Exmouth Estuary to Lympstone. This is an easy walk or cycle and at a reasonable unhurried pace will take around two hours. This was my second walk and the one that really got me going with a GPS app on the phone – not to look at but merely to track my route, time and distance. The app is called A-GPS Tracker from the Android Play store, simple enough to use and no adverts. As I was starting out as a new walker I wanted something easy and I was also keen to revisit places I had spent much of my childhood exploring and see how much they had changed. I parked in the Imperial Road car park which is 50p for half an hour so I figured £2 would do it. There is parking in the car park behind the station in the very car park from the far corner of which this walk starts but spaces may be a bit more limited and I’m not sure what the tariff is.
The walk starts off on a narrow path from the far end of the car park behind the train station. If you intend to cycle then you are far better off taking the combined pavement and cycle path from the front of the station which follows the main road (Marine Way) but just as the road bends the cycle path continues on its own and takes a route behind the football ground and into the bottom of Halsdon Avenue where the cycle and walk route is wide enough for everyone. This picture below is the part between the football ground & playing field and the end of Halsdon Avenue.
A gentle slope to a long footbridge takes you over some marshland as it follows the railway line to Lympstone.
As you near the end of the main route the scenery changes.
Soon you get to the end of the path and join the road, Sowden Lane, turning left and going under the bridge will bring you out to a spectacular view of the River Exe where there are benches from which you can take in the view and grab a well earned rest.
In the picture above, as you walk under the bridge, at the end on the left is the entrance to a public footpath that takes one back, still following the railway line but much narrower and not suitable for cycles. It’s only suitable for those who don’t mind a rough walk as it’s very narrow in places and leaves you at points very close to the passing trains – great if you want to photograph trains. It does bring you out into a lovely meadow which is generally quiet. One also needs to cross the railway line two or three times at designated crossings. The narrow path that I have just mentioned does bring you back very near the start of the cycle path at the Halsdon end.
This is the view after the railway bridge on the bend of Sowden Lane. From here one can follow the road a short distance into Lymptone for refreshments at one of many places on offer.