Tag Archive | Jurassic Coast

Which Shoes to Choose?

Exploring England #6

The best way to enjoy the dramatic scenery of the Jurassic Coast is by walking, and there are hundreds of kilometres of paths and trails you can take.

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Some climb over high limestone cliffs,

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while others lead to small isolated beaches.

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One thing is certain – whichever path you decide to take, you need to think carefully about your choice of footwear.

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At Lulworth, there are several walking tracks suitable for those looking for spectacular photographic opportunities. The path to Durdle Door starts off easily, although the wind blowing off the English Channel is icy.

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Despite the chilly breeze and warnings of crumbling cliff edges, many walkers find places along the way to enjoy expansive views of the rugged coastline.

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To reach Durdle Door, a set of steps winds down from the cliff top to the beach below. The steep steps are hard going at the best of times, but after heavy rain they’re muddy, slippery and difficult to negotiate.

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By the time you’ve reached the bottom, you could be a few centimetres taller, with a new platform sole of mud on your shoes. If you’ve chosen real platform shoes, it’s a good time to discard them before setting out across the shingle beach.

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It’s worth the effort though. The hard Portland stone of Durdle Door contrasts with the softer chalk cliffs stretching away in the distance.

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The pebbly beach drops away steeply into the ocean, making it the perfect platform for special photos.

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Eventually, it’s time to retrace your steps and return the way you came – you just have to walk back up!

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Join Jo for more Monday Walks

The Sum of Its Parts

Exploring England #3

Think of beaches and images of never-ending sand, wide blue skies and brilliant sunshine come to mind. But Chesil Beach, on the Jurassic Coast in Dorset is anything but sandy.

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The beach, formed at the end of the last ice age, is 28 km long, up to 12 metres high and completely composed of pebbles. The size of the pebbles varies from one end of the beach to the other. At West Bay in the north the pebbles are tiny while south at Portland they are much larger. It’s said that fishermen landing on the coast at night can pinpoint their location according to the size of the stones on the beach.

Fleet Lagoon runs parallel to the ocean behind Chesil Beach between Portland and Abbotsbury. The lagoon is tidal and at low tide there’s just a puddle of brackish water left. A boardwalk across the tidal flats is decorated with wooden carvings of local wildlife.

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After the bridge crossing, the pebbles begin. It’s an arduous climb to the top of the mound and the slope on the other side, down to the water’s edge, is just as steep.

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The beach may be vast, but each of its parts is tiny.

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Weekly Photo Challenge ~ Tiny