Another extremity conquered: Portland Bill (and Lulworth Cove)

To the lighthouse!

I wasn't expecting to visit any extremities during my holiday to Dorset, just some interesting rock formations, but when my college friend Rick arrived en route for Devon, a lift to Weymouth and beyond was a welcome possibility.

We were staying in Ivy Cottage, West Lulworth - the same self-catering gang as the Isle of Wight last year and Purbeck the year before that. The nearest station was Wool and the bus service (the Damory 103 and the green community 104) was rather limited, but I could get back from Weymouth ok. When we got to to Weymouth however, we decided to go look at Chesil Beach, and then just kept on to Portland and up and up, and way way south to the two lighthouses at Portland Bill. It was blowing a gale (the remains of Hurricane Katia?), the waves were huge and the foghorn was blowing so we didn't hang about. A brief stop at Chesil Beach to pick up a pebble - and it was far too windy to get over the ridge - then back to Weymouth for fish and chips. The Old Harbour had a big banner proclaiming it was endorsed by Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall's Fish Fight, so I went for the mackerel. Not a good idea - the fillets were really too thin to deep fry and I got mainly batter. What they should have done was offer coley or pollock as an alternative to cod and haddock. Said goodbye to Rick and after a quick walk round the deserted seafront got the train to Wool and the bus back to the cottage.

The steps down the other side

What else did we get up to? Sunday: arrived by cab and had a quick walk down to the Cove. Monday: managed to get the new bus timetable but had to spend 2 hours in Wool (in the Black Bear!) before I could get back. My turn to cook and Rick arrived from Hull. Tuesday: above trip to the extremity. Wednesday: bus to Dorchester, a not very interesting place, but it had supermarkets! Thursday: bus to Durdle Door caravan park, then a walk to the sea to see the arch and back east over a big hill with white cobbled path, apparently one of the busiest footpaths in Britain. After a pint of Badger in the Lulworth Cove Inn to recover, went to look at Stair Hole. Friday: bus to Bovington Tank Museum. It was a long walk to the new museum from where the bus dropped me, had a look at the hundreds of tanks in there, and a bowl of soup in the cafe. Then it was back to Wool and another spell in the pub waiting for the connecting bus. Tip: if you want to see tanks in action, go on a Wednesday.

Saturday cappuccino

Saturday was a relatively quiet day down at Lulworth Cove, where I could have done some sketching had I been bothered. Watched Roundhill Rob ascend the eastern headland, while on the other one people played extreme golf. Then it was a lazy bus ride to the church and a stroll back to the cottage. Sunday we got a lift to the station with Steve and it was a long rail journey home via Clapham Junction. Back at London Road, there was a street party going on...

More photos on Flickr.

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