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East Mendip Way (Frome to Wells) in Somerset

East Mendip Way (Frome to Wells) in Somerset


Postby Lottie » Mon Aug 16, 2010 1:02 am

Date walked: 12/08/2010

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My first attempt at report writing so I hope I get all the maps/photos and text in the right places :crazy:


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The East Mendip Way starts in Frome and arrives in Wells about 18 miles later. I cadged a lift to Frome at 9.00am with the intention of walking back to Wells - or failing that walking as far as Shepton Mallet and then catching a bus back to Wells.

The Mendip Hills are just little mounds really (very lovely mounds!) - reaching a heady 325m high at Beacon Batch (on the West Mendip way which I walked way back in 2004). The highest point I managed on this walk was 280m. And this is my training for wallking in Assynt and Sunderland next week! Ah well!

I soon left Frome behind me and headed out in gently rolling countryside dotted with farms and farm buildings.
Rolling hills .JPG

The trail led me down to the Mells river, and it wasn't long before I came across legacies of this area's industrial past. Disused quarries and old lime kilns. Limestone is my favourite rock :D (is it sad to have a favourite rock??) so these quarries brought a smile to my face!

Disused quarry .JPG
Lime Kiln.JPG
Crossing river .JPG


This area has some of the largest limestone quarries on the Mendip Hills - and Whatley quarry has its own railway line.
Quarry railway.JPG
Whatley Church.JPG


Walking alongside the southern edge of the quarry was not that pleasant. You can't actually see into the quarry, and the paths are very over grown and felt primeval at times.
Overgrown path.JPG


The walk up until this point had been pretty tough going (relatively!), mainly because stretches of it are evidently not frequently used, and not always well signposted. So I was glad to get away from the quarries and enter Asham Wood for an easy stroll through a nature reserve. I was, however, to be disappointed. It seems Asham wood has become a haven for 4x4 pleasure seekers and the place is churned up pretty badly. I met a dear old fellow trying to walk his dog there - both were caked in sticky mud - and by the time I left the wood I shared their fate.

And so it was on to the highest part of the walk - Cranham Tower. As I headed up the hill the view behind me to the east was pretty good. I could just make out one of the White Horses - probably the one at Westbury, Wilts., and I could clearly see Cley Hill (near the entrance to Longleat Safari park).
Cley Hill.JPG
Cranham Tower.JPG


I was an hour too late to stop in the pub in Chelynch. Shame - as I was looking forward to a swift cider! However, as I got closer to Shepton Mallet so the walk improved (in my opinion) and I felt a lot more spring in my step. The weather was getting better (not that it was bad in the first place) and I was glad to be away from woods! I had a look at Waterlip quarry (a mini dose of exposure near the quarry face - eeek) where work ceased in 1939 there is now a very deep lake.
Waterlip Quarry.JPG


Finally, at about 3.30pm I arrived on Ingsdons Hill overlooking Shepton Mallet where I sat down inthe sun, ate a sandwich, and took in the view.
Shepton.JPG


The trail goes around the north edge of Shepton past the Charlton viadict and the Fosse way (old Roman road) before it heads off west towards Wells.
Fosse way.JPG
Viaduct.JPG

I am very familiar with the routes between Shepton and Wells so it was time to put the map away, enjoy the early evening sunshine and the views.
Glastonbury Tor.JPG
Glastonbury Tor 2.JPG

I eventually got home at 6.30pm, legs a bit wobbly, tired but happy. In retrospect I feel it was a bit more of a quest than a walk, and if I were to do it again I would devise my own route between Frome and Shepton - something less woody and away from the big quarries - and something with a cider stop!
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Lottie
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Re: East Mendip Way (Frome to Wells) in Somerset

Postby skuk007 » Mon Aug 16, 2010 6:46 pm

Nice report Lottie, nice to see some local routes. I was in Downhead on Sunday morning but didn't have time to stop and have a wander, must make time to revisit. :)
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skuk007
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Re: East Mendip Way (Frome to Wells) in Somerset

Postby Lottie » Tue Aug 17, 2010 4:10 pm

Thanks! Just noticed you live in the sunny South-West too :thumbup: There are some lovely places to wander in Somerset & around :D
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Lottie
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Posts: 28
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Grahams:2   
Sub 2000:1   Hewitts:17
Wainwrights:3   
Joined: Jul 13, 2010
Location: Mostly in Kuwait

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