Walks And Walking – Somerset Walks Dulverton Tarr Steps Walking Route
One of the most recommended Somerset walks must be in Dulverton walking route at the Tarr Steps. The Tarr Steps are a prehistoric unique clapper bridge across the River Barle situated in the Exmoor National Park.
It had been raining all night and was looking very damp and misty when I set out but it was still very mild and it looked like the weather was started to settle. When walking in Exmoor it is always best to be prepared for the worst so I put my waterproof jacket in my rucksack and made sure I had my gaiters with me to strap around my walking boots.
Although walking in rain isn’t as lovely as walking in glorious sunshine it does mean that the rivers are flowing and crossing the woodland fords is a little more adventurous than normal.
The main road through Dulverton village was closed when I visited so I parked in a side street just outside the village and made my way to the church where I found the pathway leading round to the right hand side to start the steep climb uphill walking along the main track.
This walk wasn’t wasting any time in getting me breathing quite heavily but it soon levelled out and the walking route I had sketched out was very easy to navigate. I continued my walk along the track ignoring all signposts until I reached a signpost for Marsh Bridge on my left where I walked through the gateway ahead. I continued my walk along the waymarked route signposted to Broford and Winsford where I entered open fields before forking right by the gorse hedge following the signpost for Broford and Winsford looking back to see the mist rise from the woodland behind me.
I then continued my walk along this track to a gate which joined a lane up to a junction of lanes where I turned left up the tarmaced road and then left again a short while after in to a field signposted Public Bridleway Mounsey Hill Gate by the metal gate and blue waymarker.
I then walked to the left hand side of the field passed Highercombe Farm to a gate that entered moorland taking the track straight ahead signposted Mounsey Hill Gate and Tarr Steps. At the road I turned right to cross the cattle grid, ignoring the second cattle grid on my immediate left to follow the signpost Tarr Steps via Ashway Slide. Walking straight ahead across the Winsford Hill moorland close by the hedgebank I then dropped diagonally down to another road and cattle grid where I then turned left signposted Tarr Steps which was VERY muddy. I was very glad of my gaiters at this point.
After a short while the track took me to the right towards Tarr Steps where I then walked through a gateway to a signpost for Tarr Steps leading down to the right. However, my map suggested I go straight on the main pathway so I continued my walk along the main route at the top of the hill and then veered down to my right, where a Roe Deer popped out of the ferns and ran off, slowly until I saw farm buildings and then a car park by the stream below.
Just ahead of me and to the right where much thicker woodlands so I followed the path downhill in to the woods where I then forked right at the bottom and then through a gate to walk through the ford and onto Tarr Steps.
Staying to eat my Scotch Eggs and drink plenty of water I took plenty of photos and a video to remember my visit by before heading off across the bridge to walk left and then upwards to the right following the signpost Hawkridge.
Walking along this track I followed all the blue waymarkers uphill, through two gates and then over the hill keeping to the left of the field edge to Parsonage Farm where I then walked through a gate and down the lane signposted Hawkridge. At the bottom of the lane by the stream I followed it sharply to the left and then uphill through the woods to a tarmaced road.
Crossing the road I then walked through the gate in to a field where I kept walking straight ahead following the yellow and then the reddy brown waymarkers to Hawkridge. At the houses I walked left down the road turning left by the tree in the centre of the village keeping right at the church signposted Restricted Byway Dulverton. As the lane opened in to fields I walked down steeply through woodland to Castle Bridge signposted County Road.
Just a little further round was an old wooden footbridge that had fallen in to disrepair and further round still was the remains of an old fort. I then walked back to cross Castle Bridge and then kept the river on my left hand side as I continued my walk taking the track signposted towards Marsh Bridge.
This part of the woodland was absolutely beautiful as I followed the river along some stunning forestry until I eventually reached Marsh Bridge where I then walked right up the road to then turn left at Kennel Farm. I continued my walk up the track and passed the farm in to more woodland where I then kept to the lower walking route after crossing a small stream.
The rest of the walk was simply following the river’s twists and turns through the fantastic woodland settings until I dropped down passed cottages to the Dulverton Bridge. Crossing the bridge I then walked up through the main village road and back around to the car after an exhausting 12 miles which took me just over 5 hours.
Click here for all the photographs from this walk: Tarr Steps Images
Click here for the video from this walk: Tarr Steps Video