Thursday 15 September 2016. The “ladies” dropped out today leaving me to do this walk on my own and for the remainder of this holiday. I think that the prospect of over 1,000ft of ascent put them off. I parked at the end of the road just outside the village of Kingston and walked out to Swyre Head (682ft); the highest point in the Purbeck hills.It was at this point that I had something of a “wow” moment. The view across to Kimmeridge Bay can’t be seen before reaching the summit of Swyre Head and it is something to behold. It really took me by surprise. There was a strategically placed bench at the top and I stopped for coffee and to drink in the view.
From here is would be downhill to Kimmeridge Bay and back uphill at the end of the walk. The question was which way to go? I decided to descend by the steepest route which would take me directly to the coastal path and to return via a slightly easier route through the village of Kimmeridge although there really wasn’t much difference.
Heading west on the coastal path I had great views of the cliffs away towards Lulworth Cove and beyond. Shortly before arriving at Kimmeridge Bay I passed Clavell Tower which has been moved 25m inland to stop it fallinginto the sea. There isn’t much at Kimmeridge Bay so I pressed on to the village where I’d planned to stop for a diet bar for lunch. This plan was quickly abandoned when I stopped in the Clavell Cafe for a sausage baguette and chips washed down by a pint of lime and lemonade.
Perhaps I should have given my lunch more time to digest before setting of on the climb up Smedmore Hill. It was something of a struggle on a very warm afternoon.I was soon at the top and then had a level walk with sea views on the way back to the car. The walk was 6.9 miles with a total ascent of 1,100ft.