We love autumn. The lush green canopy of summer has faded into yellow and brown and red and leaves are crisp with old age. A sudden gust of wind and they’ll swirl and twirl to the ground, making thicker the blanket that rustles as it welcomes playful feet that crackle and crunch and whoosh and swoosh.
Holidaymakers have deserted Beaches and well trodden tracks and paths are empty leaving space to wander and admire autumn’s full colour. This walk takes in woodland, cliff tops, coves and castles. It’s an artist’s backdrop to savour.
From Dartmouth Castle walk along the path to Sugary Green picnic park. Picnic benches are open invitations to sit for a while and soak in the view. Then take the 68 steps (we counted) down to Sugary Cove.
At low tide there’s a cave to explore and rock pools too – steady as you go over the rocks.
Head back up, and rreturn the way you came, or take a left and continue along the South West Coast Path to Blackstone Point where you can scramble down to the rocks and admire the view from the mouth of the estuary to Dartmouth Castle. Look out to sea and watch the cormorants in their eerie crucifix positions drying their wings, or spot blennies and butterfish dash about in rock pools.
Then continue round to Compass Cove and back to the castle following the way marks.
It’s a one and a half mile round walk, that will take about an hour, or much longer if you stop and admire your beautiful surroundings.
If you’re feeling energetic, head up to Gallants Bower, a peaceful woodland walk to the earthworks of a Civil war fort with stunning views inland, along the coast and out to sea.
Download a free guide at www.southdevonaonb.org.uk