Category: Photos

Lynton & Lynmouth

When I was a kid I loved going to Lynton & Lynmouth so that we could ride the world’s highest and steepest fully water powered railway.

The famous Lynton and Lynmouth funicular Cliff Railway opened in 1890 and is the highest and the steepest totally water powered railway in the world! This historic funicular Cliff Railway connects the twin towns of Lynton and Lynmouth providing stunning coastal views. This working heritage railway is grade II listed, the UK’s only fully water powered railway and one of just three examples left in the World!

If you are not aware of how these things work, then let me enlighten you. The railway consists of two cars, each capable of transporting 40 passengers, joined by a continuous cable running around a 5 ft 6 in (1.676 m) pulley at each end of the incline. The cable below the upper car counterbalances that supporting the lower car, which weighs several tons, thereby keeping the two sides in equilibrium, +/- the weight of the water.

Water feeds through 5-inch (127 mm) pipes from the West Lyn River — over 1 mile (1.6 km) away — into tanks under the floor of the upper car. Each car has a 700-imperial-gallon (3,182 L; 841 US gal) tank mounted between the wheels. Water is discharged from the lower car, until the heavier top car begins to descend, with the speed controlled by a brakeman travelling on each car.

The parallel 3 ft 9 in (1,143 mm) gauge tracks (which bow out at the centre point, to allow the cars to pass) rise 500 feet (152.4 m) and are 862 feet (262.7 m) long, giving the line a gradient of 1:1.724 (58%).

Needless to say, this was a highlight of every trip to Lynton.  But rather than look out at the incredible scenery, I always look down/up the track to see the other car approaching, and as it passes, wave, then carry on watching to where we are headed.

Here is a very short video I shot of the car arriving in Lynmouth from Lynton.  You can see the green water tank under the carriage.

Just a few photos from our visit to Lynton & Lynmouth

Heddon Valley & Croyde Bay

Heddon Mouth

Monday we went to Heddon Valley and walked through to Heddon’s Mouth which is a lovely pebble beach that was completely deserted.  Paul said that most people don’t realise it is there and think it is a grassy bank and a National Trust centre along with a pub.

We got there at 8am and walked along winding paths following the flow of the river to the sea where the bay is surrounded by some of Englands highest cliffs.  To say it was beautiful is an underestimation.  The rocks forming the sides of the cliffs were enormous, and only being close to them could you really appreciate the sheer size.  Mazikeen and I went climbing up a few, but they were covered in sea moss and seaweed which made them quite treacherous to be on.  Harper decided to bound over to us and slipped over, then Mazikeen getting excited followed suit.  Both decided they had had enough and gingerly left the rocks to the more stable grounds of the pebble beach, which to us bipeds it was just as treacherous.  Mazikeen took off into the sea having a wild time, and I decided to join her, so trainers, socks and jeans off and in I went, only to realise it was bloody freezing and really hard not to fall on my ass into the sea, so out I went.  Whilst getting dried I looked over to see poor Mazikeen sat on the pebbles shaking with the cold.  I quickly dressed and moved over to where the sun was blazing down and into the warmth.

Heddon Valley

After taking some photos and building pebble towers we left to follow the trail back to the car.  The dogs were both glad of the rest in the car.

Croyde Bay From Baggy Point

Next stop was Croyde Bay and Baggy Point.  Both places I went to when I was a kid and have good memories of.  We walked part way up Baggy Point, but the heat was sweltering so turned back to the car so the dogs could cool down and rest again.  Quick ice cream then we were off again to find a place for lunch.

Lunch was at The Rock Inn.  The food was really nice, although I was torn between having plaice with crayfish or ribs.  I went for ribs, and although it was very nice, I feel I should have gone for the fish.

The Rock Inn

After all that we went back to the cottage for a well-earned rest, and I had a snooze as I was knackered again.

Local, Not So Local…

I had spoken to Paul the owner of the farm and he recommended going to Wistlandpound Reservoir as the walk is quite flat and good for disabled users.  It is only about 25 minutes drive away so pretty local.  So, imagine our surprise in taking over an hour and a half to find it.  This part of the world is not so well signposted, and very few roads have names, which makes it really hard to find a place.  My TomTom could not find it, not even in the points of interest.  We ended up in Barnstaple which was handy as I needed eye drops as my hay fever has reached fever pitch and even though I am taking double the dose of antihistamines it does not seem to rid me of the symptoms, so I needed eye drops too.  After my quick visit to Tesco pharmacy in this rather massive superstore, we left under the navigation of M who had found the place on Google Maps and was now my TomTom but in human form.  We got there relieved that we could finally get out of the car and enjoy the place.  Needless to say, the dogs were made up to get out of the car too and explore this new place.

As you can see from the header image, it is quite a lovely place to walk around, and the sun was out giving its all to us.  We met many other dog walkers and were surrounded by quite literally thousands of blue damselflies which were lovely to look at.

This is what they looked like, although this is not my photograph, but that of David Kitching, taken from the British Dragonfly Society website.

After our jaunt, we came back to the cottage and pottered about as the dogs were totally exhausted by the heat on top of the exciting walk they had.  I got the lounger out of the shed and lay there for a bit reading, then fell asleep in the midafternoon sun, and as you would expect, got burned quite a bit.  Thankfully I have been a little sun-kissed these last few weeks and I expect it to have calmed down quite considerably tomorrow.

Later this evening we went for another walk with the dogs down a rather rocky lane that part way down has a mound of horse manure that would rival any medium-sized hill, in other words, it was massive.  Not a highlight of the walk but all the same an amusing sight.

This evening we have both kicked back and relaxed on our own couches with a dog each keeping us company and read with Classic FM on in the background.

All in all, I think it was another successful day of relaxation.

Winter Sunset…

I took this whilst walking the dogs on the edge of the fields, pine trees peppered about, the sun heading towards the horizon with only the beach and sea below it.

Misty Woods…

I thought I would share my photo of the woods.  Although I would take the heat of the summer anytime, the winter has some lovely moments.  The mist was fading away, the bright winter sun was burning through, dappling the path and colouring the foliage.

And then there was light…

I took this photograph at our local cemetery, the sun was in the perfect place as though the angle was touching it.  We have so many statues there if I took a photo of one each day it would take well ever a year to feature them all.

Our Plane…


I thought I would share with you all a photograph I took of our plane. It is a sculpture of  Lockheed 10E Electra Plane that took its first transatlantic flight on 15th May 1937 from our beach to New York.  It was a record breaker and took 16 hours to cross the Atlantic.  Below is a photo of the original plane.


The building in the background “Toad Hall” is still there but has been empty for a long time now.  It was a Hotel/B&B in its early days and then a nightclub.

Walk in the park…

We decided to take a walk in the town park today with the dogs. M had ever been there, I had many years ago but never took much notice as was walking the perimeter with the dogs.  The first two photos are things I had never noticed in the past.  Glad we took our time to discover.




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