Bill's Easton Connection
Great Western Randonnées' 300 PBP qualifier. Head to the coast & Portland Bill. Return along the Jurassic Coast & via Gold Hill in Shaftesbury. #wills_hills & views in good supply, 3 different railway paths include
Hot drinks, breakfast rolls and hot food at finish, possibly wood fired pizza. ============================================================= A quick exit south from Easton and the city tracing the former Bristol & North Somerset Railway into The Mendips and its old mining towns. Continue south through the rolling East Somerset and Dorset hills with vistas across The Levels, descend along the ridge above the Cerne Giant, after climbing it of course, to Dorchester; Hardy's Casterbridge with its Roman Ampitheatre. Ascend again giving views out to the coast before plummeting down the old main road to Weymouth where you pick up The Rodwell Trail before passing through the other Easton; this was the terminus of the Easton & Church Hope Railway which later GWR took control of, the line wound its way up around the east cliffs of the isle. Arriving at Portland Bill have lunch by the Lighthouse before heading back then west along the Jurassic Coast with fantastic views of Chesil Beach. Then turn east across the Dorset Valleys, #wills_hills galore, catching a glimpse of the Giant before passing through the picturesque Milton Abbas. Now north you go with cracking views from atop Woolland Hill making your way to Shaftesbury and the cobbles of Gold Hill! Edge the West Wiltshire Downs and pass through Longleat to Frome and the southern end of The Cotswolds. Enjoy the 2 Tunnels, part of the old Somerset & Dorset Joint Railway, before popping out in Bath for the last big climb of the day, up Lansdown Lane! Then back into Bristol to a warm welcome in Easton. ============================================================= Want to make a long weekend of it? Try the LVIS 'Barry's Bristol Ball Buster 200' or one of the others on the Sunday!
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