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This Week's Walks - Archive

Please see the Saturday Walker's Club This Week's Walks page.

This is an archive of walks done by the Saturday Walker's Club. You should only need to use this page if the SWC website is down.

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Saturday, 21 July 2018

Saturday Walk Wareham or Corfe Castle to Lulworth Cove [new map-led route] [swimming walk]

SWC Walk 75 (sort of):  Wareham or Corfe Castle to Lulworth Cove via Kingston and Swyre Head T=SWC.75 

Length: From Wareham:  18.5 Miles or 29.8 km for those more metrically minded; or
              From Corfe Castle:  12.5 Miles or 20.1 km for those more metrically minded

Difficulty:  11 out of 10 for the longer route and 10 out of 10 for the shorter version

Train:  Take the 8:35 AM South Western Weymouth train from London Waterloo arriving in Wareham at 10:48. For a Corfe Castle start, you can then either catch a number 40 bus from just outside the station at 11:04 (arriving at Corfe at 11:17) or take a train from Wareham at 11:19 (arriving at Corfe at 11:37). To return from Lulworth Cove, you will either need to catch a bus or take a taxi (Silver Cars 01929 400 409 or 07811 328 281) to Wool.  Buses are as follows: X54 17:18 (arriving Wool 17:49) or bus 30 18:11 (arriving Wool 18:30). Return trains from Wool are at 17:45; 18:45; 19:45 and 20:34.  Buy a day return to Wool. 

This is one of my favorite coastal walks with stunning cliffs soaring to the sky and swooping to the sea….This year, the plan is to explore a slightly different map-led route via Kingston and Swyre Head  to follow a more coastal ridge above Kimmeridge Bay before dropping down to Worbarrow Bay (for some swimming) and carrying along the dramatic cliffs to Lulworth Cove. 

For route finding, you should use the “blue” route on the OS Map page for SWC 75. For those starting in Wareham, the route follows the original route for a spell (basically to Corfe). If starting from Corfe, you will need to pick up this alternative route towards Kingston. Once on Swyre Head, navigation should be simple – keep the sea to your left….. You can find more information about the area and print the map/download the GPX here.

One added benefit of this route is that it passes by the very charming Scotts Arms in Kingston (01929 480 270) which works well for a lunch pub for the Wareham starters, as it serves food all day on Saturday – though possibly too early for the Corfe starters. Do keep in mind though that there is another 10 miles to go to get to Lulworth Cove……So, regardless of route, a picnic may still be the better option….

Post walk refreshies can be had at the Lulworth Cove Inn in Lulworth Cove. 

Enjoy the walk!

4 comments:

John Powell said...

For anyone thinking of doing the shorter walk, it would also be possible to catch the 9.35 train from Waterloo that arrives at Wareham at 11.48. This connects with the number 40 bus at 12.04 arriving Corfe at 12.19. You would almost certainly still be ahead of those doing the full walk from Wareham.

I am thinking of doing this later option and would be keen to hear if anyone else is interested.

PS. For an even shorter walk, the above bus continues on to Swanage, stopping at the Scott Arms pub at 12.25.

Walker said...


N=15 on this walk, eight starting from Wareham, six from Corfe, one from Kingston. The train to Wareham ran on time but the SWR special to Corfe Castle was an hour late, so we “short” walkers all got the bus, which was late and very crowded. This meant we did not start walking till midday, having got an 8.30 train. We had a pleasant walk up across Corfe Common to Kingston, where the Scott Arms and its wonderfully scenic garden provided a drinks stop. Here we were joined by a late starter who had got the bus to this point. We found this pub quite quiet but the main walkers 50 minutes later reported a big queue to be served.

We pressed on to Swyre Head where we picnicked. The views here were gorgeous and the whole ridge from here to Worbarrow Bay is a delight. There were oodles of butterflies, including lots of very rare Walls (a type of butterfly). But this was also a long long ridge. Butterfly-spotting apart, I was hammering along and indeed felt in a rush all day. But W=the-sun-shone from a lovely blue sky, despite more clouds evident inland, so it was worth it.

We got to Worbarrow Bay at 4pm and four of us swam, the water clear but colder than it ought to have been. As we prepared to leave, the main walkers arrived. Several of them swam but with time pressing we “shorties” did not wait for them. This proved wise because after the near vertical climb out of the bay we hit a mass charity endurance event involving possibly the entire Millennial generation of Great Britain who were walking from Poole to Land’s End or some such and who infested the entire rest of the route like ants. The steep descent to Mupes Bay was a particular trial with participants with over-tired limbs struggling to descend the steps. Even pushing past them in the most aggressive way possible I did not get to Lulworth till after 7pm, in time to get fish and chips and gulp down a litre of water.

Others of the group followed but there was some speculation whether the main walkers would make it before our booked minivan taxi at 8pm. They did but there were too many of us for one taxi and no others available. Our driver insisted he could do two round trips to Wool before the 8.34 train. We were sceptical but he was right. We all got the train and armed with plentiful “supplies” soon managed to clear a large area around us on the train and enjoy a happy run back to London.

Karen said...

Thanks for posting this walk. It was a great day out. How nice on these long, hot summer days to be up and out for an 08:30 train and making the most of the sunshine. (Who can sleep in this heat anyway?) Some might not favour the early start, long journey combo, but as a Mon - Friday, 9 - 5 office drone, the occasional 2-hour train journey to a location outside the usual London catchment area is always a great opportunity to catch up with some reading and really feel like I have escaped the commuter belt.

The taxi situation at Lulworth wasn't as precarious as Walker's report might have implied. Flagrantly going against the 'every walker is responsible for themselves' spirit of the club, Stargazer had arranged the 8-seater in advance of the walk, and once numbers were more or less confirmed upon arrival at Wool in the morning, arranged a second pickup with the same taxi.

As for the charity walkers, it wasn't ideal, but I've no doubt even our small groups are someone else's bete noire: There you are, trying to enjoy a peaceful walk around Sevenoaks when 30 chatty Londoners show up... Even if their endurance event doesn't result in a cure for cancer/alzheimers/diabetes etc., reading the various t-shirts was a reminder that I am lucky to be in good enough health to enjoy a tough walk for no other reason than fun.

A jolly good day out.

Walker said...

Stargazer did indeed try to book the second taxi at the start of the walk: I should have made that clear. His/her organisation was excellent.

As for our groups probably disturbing others out walking, yes, absolutely. We also can clear entire railway carriages on our return journeys. And in winter, while assiduous about taking our boots off in the lunch pub, we routinely tread mud all over the tea room floor. And yes, I am as guilty of all these crimes as everyone else.