Stage 1: Taunton to West Bagborough — West Deane Way
Kit P planned a hike.
July 12, 2021
This first stage leads you through Taunton from the River Tone out into the Somerset countryside. You hike along the edge of the Quantocks AONB, discovering quaint villages, extraordinary manors and remnants of the area’s fascinating history. The hike ends in West Bagborough, a quiet, beautiful village with a friendly inn.
Begin at Tone Bridge, a lovely Grade II-listed span sitting over the River Tone between the train station and the high street. Hike north through the outskirts to Staplechurch, a little village right on the very edge of Taunton. The church here dates back to the 13th century and its churchyard makes for a nice Thermos stop if you’ve got one.
Just beyond the church, take a footpath across a series of fields over Rag Hill and down to Burlands Farm. Turn right onto the lane and follow it until it veers south; the footpath continues straight across fields to Dodhill and onto Nailsbourne – both tiny communities. More fields bring you to Kingston St Mary, a quiet village with a pub. Although it’s not quite halfway through the stage, if you want an early lunch this could be an option.
Set off west to Yarford, taking an optional detour north to see Tetton House from afar. The trail leads you north west, along the edge of the Quantock Hills along quiet lanes with thriving hedgerows and fields that have been farmed for centuries. In Cothelstone, seek out the ancient well and the stunning Elizabethan manor house. The house is private but the footpath takes you right by it, offering wonderful views.
The Way loops into the sprawling village of West Bagborough twice. If you’re planning on staying overnight, stop when you first reach the village and you’ll find The Rising Sun inn which serves dinner and has rooms. If you’d rather continue, keep going into stage 2, past the church and out to the north west.
July 19, 2021
Hiking Collection by Kit P
Mountain Biking Collection by komoot
Hiking Collection by Dan Hobson
Bike Touring Collection by komoot
Bike Touring Collection by Halfords UK
Bike Touring Collection by The Racing Collective
Bike Touring Collection by Amy