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A Stroll Across The Tarr Steps

Grade : E
Distance : 4 km (2½ miles)
Height Climbed : 187 meters (613 feet)
Map : Explorer OL9
Stiles : 0
Summary : A leisurely riverside stroll through the Tarr Steps National Nature Reserve, along a short section of the The Two Moors Way and across the actual Tarr Steps, an ancient scheduled monument.
Terrain : Apart from one uphill section back to the car park it is easy, fairly flat walking with some uneven ground and boggy patches.
Start : Tarr Steps visitor car park    NGR: SS 8723 3238    Nearest Postcode TA22 9PY - Tarr Farm, about 500 metres (546 yards) further down the road from the car park directly opposite the Tarr Steps. Vehicle access beyond the car park is restricted to disabled visitors and overnight guests of the Farm only.
Beware some Sat Navs take you through Hawkridge, to the wrong side of the river with a ford that is too deep for standard road vehicles instead of the correct route through Liscombe
Access by car : From the M5 J23 follow the A39 for about 43½ km (27 miles) and turn left onto the A396 through Dunster for roughly 18½ km (11½ miles). Take a right onto a minor road to Winsford where you bear left for Tarr Steps, then almost immediately left again before the ford. Follow the road ahead to a crossroad with the B3223, where you turn left to follow the Tarr Steps signage. Take the next right turn signed for Tarr Steps and Tarr Farm Inn. Keep ahead until the next signed junction where you bear left still following the Tarr Steps and Tarr Farm Inn signage. Now keep ahead for another 1¼ km (¾ mile) to turn left into the Tarr Steps pay and display car park.
Access by public transport : None


1   Grid ref : SS 8722 3236
Head past this visitor information point cross the exit road and take the path ahead signed Tarr Steps.

2   Grid ref : SS 8691 3219
At the other end follow this road left past Tarr Farm

3   Grid ref : SS 8681 3212
To turn right here as you join The Two Moors Way and enter the Tarr Steps Woodlands, the river should be on your left.
The Two Moors Way is Devon's coast to coast trail opened in 1976. It runs from Wembury in the south to Lynmouth in the north crossing both Dartmoor and Exmoor National Parks.
The Tarr Steps Woodlands have been designated a Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI) and a National Nature Reserve (NNR) because of the rare lichens that thrive in the Barle valley's moist clean air.

4   Grid ref : SS 8670 3224
At this path junction take the left hand fork (boggy in places)

5   Grid ref : SS 8662 3238
Then go left again at this junction with a bridleway.

6   Grid ref : SS 8597 3274
Now keep ahead until you reach this gate on your left, which you go through to cross the footbridge. Turn left on the other side along the bridleway signed to Tarr Steps. (boggy in places) .

7   Grid ref : SS 8593 3263
On reaching these gates you take the left hand one to cross another footbridge (can be slippery when wet) and continue along the riverside.

8   Grid ref : SS 8674 3211
This brings you to the road in this picture, which you cross and take the path left on the other side over The Tarr Steps; a clapper bridge dating back to medieval times that has been designated a grade I listed building and a Scheduled Ancient Monument.

9   Grid ref : SS 8690 3220
Head up the road on the other side past Tarr Farm with the option of a refreshment stop before taking this path on your right a few metres (yards) further on back up to the car park.

last route check 04/05/2019
Copyright © 2014-2019 Alan Windebank, ©1999, ©2017 Walkingworld Ltd All Rights Reserved
Last route check 04/05/2019