SOMERSET COAST PATH
Stage 6: Brean to Weston-super-Mare
Wednesday, August 3, 2016
Two more days of poor weather kept me off the Somerset Coast Path at the beginning of the week, so I used the time to visit a couple of cider farms and the West Somerset Steam Railway. On the Wednesday the weather was better, though very windy, so I got back to the path for a 27.4km walk from Brean to Weston-super-Mare.
At the time of this walk, the new England Coast Path had only been signposted as far as the western tip of Brean Down; a long and high ridge of land that projects out into the Bristol Channel. This was reached by walking northwards along the beach from Brean, making a short but steep climb up to the spine of Brean Down and then a further walk along the ridge to the old Victorian fort at the end.
Beyond that I had to revert to the old, unofficial Somerset Coast Path described in the Aurum Press guidebook. After coming down from Brean Down, the route backtracks about five kilometres down the beach to Berrow, heading inland through the Berrow Dunes Local Nature Reserve to the main road. From there a very circuitous route must be taken to get around the River Axe and return to the coast at Uphill, just across the river mouth from Brean Down and only a couple of kilometres short of the end of the walk at Weston-super-Mare's Grand Pier. There was a long and uninspiring trudge on narrow roads and a couple of very poorly maintained off-road paths, one of which was completely overgrown with thorny plants and barely passable.
Rather than document this walk in detail, I'll just show a few pictures for now and will return once the next stretch of the England Coast Path is open, which is due by 2020.