Worth watching out for.
— John Cleare
Using this guide
ROUTE GUIDE & MAPS
The trail guide and maps have not been divided into rigid daily stages since people walk at different speeds and have different interests. The route summaries below describe the trail between significant places and are written as if walking the coast path from Bude to Plymouth. To enable you to plan your own itinerary, practical information is presented clearly on the trail maps. This includes walking times, all places to stay, camp and eat, as well as shops where you can buy supplies. Further service details are given in the text under the entry for each place.
For a condensed overview of this information see Itineraries on pp32-4 and the village and town facilities table on pp36-9. for overview maps and profiles see the colour pages at the end of the book.
Scale and walking times
The trail maps are to a scale of 1:20,000 (1cm = 200m; 31/8 inches = one mile). Walking times are given along the side of each map and the arrow shows the direction to which the time refers. Black triangles indicate the points between which the times have been taken. See note overleaf on walking times.
The time-bars are a tool and are not there to judge your walking ability. There are so many variables that affect walking speed, from the weather conditions to how many beers you drank the previous evening. After the first hour or two of walking you will be able to see how your speed relates to the timings on the maps. Note also that time spent on ferry crossings is not included on time-bars.
Up or down?
The trail is shown as a dashed line. An arrow across the trail indicates the slope; two arrows show that it is steep. Note that the arrow points towards the higher part of the trail. If, for example, you are walking from A (at 80m) to B (at 200m) and the trail between the two is short and steep it would be shown thus: A— — — >> — — – B. Reversed arrow heads indicate downward gradient.
Apart from in large towns where some selection of places has been necessary, the maps show almost every place to stay that is within easy reach of the trail and are willing to take one-night stays. Details of each place are given in the accompanying text.
For B&B-style accommodation the number and type of rooms is given after each entry: S = single room (one single bed), T = twin room (two single beds), D = double room (one double bed), Tr = triple room (three single beds or one double and one single) F = family room (usually a double and bunk beds, or a double and two singles). Thus family rooms can usually also be used as a double or twin.
Rates quoted are per person (pp) per night unless indicated otherwise; rates are usually discounted for longer stays. The rate for single occupancy (sgl occ) of a double/twin is also shown where appropriate. Some places either do not accept single-night bookings at peak times or they charge extra for them. Most B&Bs don’t accept credit/debit cards but some guesthouses, hostels and hotels do, as do most holiday parks.
The text also mentions whether the premises have wi-fi; if a bath is available for at least one room; and whether dogs are welcome. Most places will not take more than one dog in a room and also accept them subject to prior arrangement. Some make an additional charge (usually per night but occasionally per stay) while others may require a deposit which is refundable if the dog doesn’t make a mess.
Prices for camping vary from site to site but for backpackers many sites charge for two people in a small tent although others charge per pitch and per person.
The numbered GPS waypoints refer to the list on p337. Other features are marked on the map when pertinent to navigation. In order to avoid cluttering the maps and making them unusable not all features have been marked each time they occur.
- About the coast path
- Planning your walk
- Using this guide
- Sample route guide: Bude to Crackington Haven
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