Sidmouth Running Club members enjoy a ‘coach trip to Exmouth’
PUBLISHED: 11:43 20 February 2020 | UPDATED: 11:43 20 February 2020
On a very soggy Sunday Morning, 20 Sidmouth Running Club members arrived at Knowle car park and boarded the coach bound for Exmouth and Budleigh Salterton, writes Hamish Spence.
The groups aim was to run back to Sidmouth along the Jurassic Coastal path.
There were several official options for distances with a 6-mile route from Budleigh Salterton, an 11-mile group starting from the RNLI station in Exmouth or a 13-mile run from the Imperial Ground home of Exmouth Rugby ground. There was also another not so official route that would take the participants inland a bit.
The more leisurely and very sociable group set off from Budleigh Salterton on a the 6-mile route with three walkers, Alexa and Graham Baker along with Liz Cload. There were five runners Julia Haddrell, Ann Cole, Christine Farnham, Sarah Clapham and Sue Collman, who all disappeared off into the grey dampness of the morning.
From the RLNI Exmouth on the Coastal Path in the 11-mile group were Terry Bewes, Peter Bishop, Greg Ward, and John Sharples.
The quartet warmed up along the sea front before climbing the zig-zag pathway up onto the Coastal pathway. As was expected, the path was very wet, very muddy and very slippery all the way back to Sidmouth!
With Storm Dennis doing a disappearing act and slinking off to wreak havoc somewhere else, this group enjoyed a moderate and steady jaunt back with just a light wind behind assisted them with the hills, the 'up' hills to be precise and this gave them just the extra title bit of power to ascend High Peak.
Derek Blackburn, Sam Ingram, Richard Summerhayes, Christine Hellier and Rob Dunsford all decided to do the full 13.5 miles distance and disembarked from the coach at the Exmouth Rugby club.
They set off the along the Exmouth Promenade to Budleigh Salterton where they then headed up the River Otter as far as Otterton. It was then a hilly trek back to the Coastal path and on back to Sidmouth. The group got back to the town in a time of two-and-a-quarter hours which equated to a fast average pace of 10:09 minute miles.
Then, there was the rebel Mighty Greens! Jane Hemsworth and Sarah Watkins deciding to opt for Helen Palmer's alternative, slightly more sheltered, inland route.
However, they very soon discovered that this route was no less flooded and very boggy. With Helen guiding them from the Exmouth Rugby Club, they followed the East Devon Way out of Exmouth heading along part of the Exe Estuary, past A la Ronde, towards Woodbury Common.
The group passed Woodbury Castle and covered several miles of the Common. It was up on the Common that Helen lightened her load by dropping her emergency cake money!
Thank goodness Jane caught the £20 note before it disappeared into an unmapped Storm Dennis stream! They made their way on passing through Stoneyford, Dotton and climbed up onto Muttersmoor.
Finally, having clocked just over 15 miles, they arrived back at The Knowle. The rain got heavier as they got closer to Sidmouth and all were soaked.
However, the trio felt it was all worth it, for being able to run in our beautiful Devon countryside, spending time with friends and having some laughs along the way. Helen put together what looks like a great route for a distance run, perhaps to be undertaken during the summer months.