Exmoor 006.jpg (1021127 bytes)

Click on thumbnail to view full size picture of Tarr Steps

CLICK HERE FOR WALKING MAP

WITHYPOOL to TARR STEPS

Waypoint Map Reference Bearing to next waypoint
START SS 8447 3541 73

WP1

SS 8504 3561

173

WP2 SS 8513 3506 154
WP3 SS 8574 3392 171
WP4 SS 8597 3276 127
WP5 SS 8617 3262 132
WP6 SS 8677 3211 276
WP7 SS 8648 3213 293
WP8 SS 8580 3202 316
WP9 SS 8477 3303 354
WP10 SS 8466 3381 294
WP11 SS 8411 3403 269
WP12 SS 8311 3398 40
WP13 SS 8345 3441 22
WP14 SS 8359 3479 74
WP15 SS 8444 3507 7
START SS 8447 3541 -
General:- This 8.5 mile route is quite justifiably one of the most popular stretches of riverside path on Exmoor, I would certainly put it in the top three. As the river Barle wanders through its shallow valley it has a hypnotic quality that says "come along with me and wander for a while", such an invitation is hard to resist. It has something to offer at any time of year but remember although the river section to Tarr Steps is sheltered the second half of the route is over high open moorland and conditions can be harsh if the weather has a temper on.

Withypool is a tiny hamlet in a remote part of Exmoor, The Royal Oak pub is reputed to have been used by R. D. Blackmore when writing Lorna Doon but for me the village has another attraction, its petrol station! For many years it was the last station in Britian selling petrol by the gallon. Even when it was illegal they persisted and local support kept prosecution at bay. Finally, in 2002 the government, in one of its "big brother moods", tried to force the station to convert to litres. The owner closed rather than give in, and we are the worse off for it, another bit of English quirky charm has gone. Well, not quite, because the station is still there and the attendants chair is still in his hut as if he has gone to lunch and will be back any minute.

Tarr Steps is a beautiful spot very popular for family picnics. Children & dogs run around in wild abandon chasing sticks in the river getting muddy and wet knowing nobody will care, its what you are supposed to do,

Withypool Hill has a the remains of a small stone age circle, it has always puzzled me why there are so few remains of ancient Britain in this area.

(GPS length 7.24 miles). Pub at the end and there is a cafe at Tarr Steps.

How to get there: A lot of the roads around Withypool are very narrow, the best way is via the B3223 from Exford or Dulverton. Turn towards Withypool at the spire Cross cross roads at SS8883 3356. Ignore the first two road on your right then fork right at a T junction SS8766 3258. Enter village pass Royal Oak pub on right, cross river and park in car park on right soon after.