Sam N Pât é do the UK travel blog

Dunster Castle

Bridgewater Bay viewed from Dunster Castle

Selworthy reversing backward up hill

Exmoor moors a long way down

The SIGN now look how the road dissapears

Porlock Hill 1930's picture is the best I found to show the...

Ilfrtacombe: strange bottom boat


We managed to leave Nancy's on time after a couple of false starts. Then it was onward and downward M62 to the M6 to the M5. All major motorways for those of you who are not familiar with the UK. By the way, Sam was doing a wonderful job driving on the Left side of the road from the right side of the car.

Stopped at our first planned stop, the Sewing Station in Bridgwater that had been closed for a few years. What a let down. That darn x@#$%^& Internet, can't get anything correct. Well not to be disheartened we ventured on to Duster Castle ,Mine head, Somerset were my pictures do not do it justice. Dunster Castle is a 14th century castle. All that remains of the medieval fortification is the impressive gate house and the stumps of two towers.

Further along Selworthy, Somerset as described on the net, it was this beautiful "picture postcard" town. Not to bore you, but there was a modicum of excitement when Sam pulled the car into a parking area that faced down a steep angle and over a massive precipice. The only thing stopping the car was a small wooden fence. Things would not have been so "harry" if the car we rented had a normal hand break and was easier to shift into reverse. Did I forget to mention that the car is a stick shift "standard transmission". The only direction the car wanted to go was forward, and that was not an option. Top it off, two women pulled in almost directly behind Sam and could not make the turn into the lot. She could not back up the incline either, so asked if we could help push her back. We did not push her back, as she managed to reverse herself, but another gentleman and myself got Sam out of danger. Wheeeewwwww that was close, but nowhere near what your are about to here.

Next on the itinerary was a small village of Porlock and Porlock Weir. We passed through Porlock heading way down to Porlock Weir when we decided that if we got to the bottom and had to back up the hill we may have ended up in the Irish Sea. Following the GPS/SatNav/TomTom we ascended three masterpieces of the study of geometry. The first was a ¼ pitch, that means for every 4 feet forward you go up 1 foot {The road climbs approximately 1,300 ft (400 m) in less than 2 miles (3.2 km)}. The next was a 1/6 pitch and the last but not really was a 26 degree angle. Imagine the consequences if the car stalled which it nearly did, could I really push it up the hill? I don't think so.

Sam had always wanted to follow the South West cost of England over the Exmoor National Park. That has now been satisfied after a harrowing ordeal from Porlock over the Exmoor moors and into Ilfracombe, were the hills did not even stop at sea level. Stuck on dead ends, Sam had to reverse uphill again and again..........

The accommodation that I had chosen appeared to be a little on the scuzzy side so being prepared with alternatives, we searched and searched and then decided on a very nice guest house/bed and breakfast call Burnside Guest House in Ilfracome.

it Fortunately was still light at 5:30 when we came into Ilfracombe starving and oh so tired. The landlady suggested oldest pub in the town and we headed (walking) into town walking downwards. Not managing to make the pub, we stopped for a take away sandwich and walked back UP to the Guest House. I am simply amazed that the blog is even being written, but with all the excitement of the day it should be recorded for posterity.



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