Stage 3: Bishopswood to Taunton — Channel to Channel Path
Kit P planned a hike.
September 8, 2021
This is a walk of two halves: one in the Blackdowns and one in the Tone Valley. You start high at Bishopswood and climb gently to Staple Hill before descending out of the Blackdowns and towards Taunton. Old churches and historic country houses combine to make this hike a real blend of natural and human influences.
Leave Bishopswood and hike north west with the infant River Yarty on your right-hand side. A mixture of lanes and footpaths take you along the flank of Brown Down before crossing the Yarty, now just a tiny spring. Hike past its source at Yarty Moor Nature Reserve and ascend Staple Hill using a bridle path.
The trig pillar on the hill is shrouded in forest but the views from the edge of the woodland are wonderful. Patchwork fields unfold before you revealing quintessential Blackdown landscapes. Now begins a lengthy ascent, short sections of which are steep, to the B3170. When you reach it, cross over and follow a lane heading north west for a while until you see a byway straight ahead. Take this and it’ll lead you along the edge of Adcombe Wood.
As you swap forest for fields, the incline starts to level out and by the time you reach the village of Pitminster, you’re in much lower land. Stop here for a pub lunch at the Queen’s Arms if you fancy it, and to admire the old church. After the village, follow the trail past the majestic Poundisford Park and cross over the M5.
The footpath leads you to the edge of Trull and across the fields towards Taunton, sharing the path with the East Deane Way. Wander through the lovely Vivary Park and, finally, into Taunton. A thriving town, you’ll find lots of food and accommodation here, as well as a mainline train station.
September 16, 2021
Hiking Collection by Kit P
Hiking Collection by Dan Hobson
Bike Touring Collection by Ben Wormald
Bike Touring Collection by Halfords UK