Watersmeet from Lynmouth.

Start. Lynmouth (The Esplanade car park).

Route. Lynmouth - Riverside Road - Tors Road - Coleridge Way - Wester Wood - Horners Neck Wood - Watersmeet House - Barton Wood - Hillsford Bridge - Myrtleberry Iron Age Enclosure - Mytrtleberry Cleave - Lym Cleave - Riverside Road - The Esplanade.

Notes. Welcome to one of Britain's deepest river gorges, Watersmeet, where the sylvan valleys of the East Lyn and the Hoar Water meet. Home to a wide variety of wildlife, otters frequent the river banks, salmon the waters, red deer and a wide variety of bird life inhabit the steep wooded slopes. Also calling this place home Watersmeet House originally a fishing lodge and romantic retreat, now a tea room and an excellent one at that.

It was hot and humid with yet more rain forecast when we left Lynmouth, the rushing waters of the East Lyn River ushered us into a sylvan gorge, excellent paths guided us across a number of bridges, through Wester Wood and Horners Neck Wood we climbed, we soon passed the site of the once thriving Lynrock Mineral Water Works before reaching Watersmeet House, time for lunch at this excellent National Trust tea room. Once fed and watered we re-traced our steps to one of two bridges, we crossed before turning left, a finger-post announced this was the path to the waterfall viewing point. A large number of steps eased the gradient, passed a slender water chute we wandered before the path guided us to Hillsford Bridge. The busy A39 crosses the gorge here, we also crossed before ascending over tarmac to be welcomed by a finger-post inviting us to Lynmouth.

This was a small slice of The Two Moors Way. 'the Devon Coast to Coast', a long-distance walking route between Ivybridge on the southern edge of Dartmoor and Lynmouth, a 102 miles of exquisite rambling, we only had 2 ½ miles to walk, a superb finally to this short excursion. Through birch and oak woods we wandered, passed Myrtleberry Iron Age Enclosure then out into stunning views, this wonderful trod hugged the contours of the hill most of the way, at one point a snake like descent into a side gorge tested the legs on the climb up the other side before the path finally descended through Lym Cleave depositing us back in the busy streets of Lynmouth.

view route map.


Looking to Foreland Point from the sea front at Lynmouth.

Rhenish Tower a feature of Lynmouth Harbour, originally erected in 1860 by General Rawdon to store salt water for indoor baths, destroyed in the infamous flood of 1952, later re-built to the original plan.

A small slice of Lynmouth.

The many cataracts of the East Lyn River.

A once substantial building stood on this site, Lynrock Mineral Water Factory opened it's doors on the East Lyn River in 1911, supplying water and ginger beer to eager Edwardian gentry, reputed to be the most palatable water in the world, sadly in 1939 it closed through lack of demand, what remained was destroyed in the flood of 1952.

The East Lyn River below Watersmeet.

Watersmeet House sits at the confluence of two rivers, originally a fishing lodge and romantic retreat, now a National Trust tea room.

Cascades on the Hoaroak Water.

A little further up stream a slender water chute.

Myrtleberry South, an Iron Age enclosure dating back to possibly 800BC.

Looking towards Countisbury from near Myrtleberry South.

Butter Hill seen over the East Lyn valley.

Viewing Lynmouth from Two Moors Way, rising to the left the wooded slopes of Hollerday Hill.

Sue strides out into spectacular views.

High above the East Lyn valley viewing Butter Hill and Forland.

A stunning view up the valley of the East Lyn River.

Glen Lyn Gorge home to The Power of Water Exhibition incorporating a spectacular gorge walk.

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