Day 13: Rest day in Barnstaple

Tuesday, 02/05/2017
Weather: Sunny with some clouds

I hadn’t any specific plans for this day apart from those mentioned yesterday. So I had a leisurely start. As it turned out Bryan, my host, is a walker and cyclist himself and provided me with some maps of the area. And he offered that I could have my clothes washed with them by just putting some money in an honesty box. Of course, I accepted.

Then I strolled through the town. I wouldn’t call Barnstaple an exceptional pretty town, but compared to those I came through before it feels at least like a town which isn’t only a facade for tourists, but a place where real people spend ordinary lives.

As things sometimes happen I was just passing a mobile phone shop on High Street when I bumped into Jack who was equally surprised. We spent some time with a coffee in the sun and chatted. Actually, he made it up to Bude, but problems with his mobile phone forced him to take a two hours bus ride into Barnstaple to sort this out. We exchanged our experiences on the coast path so far and he now considers leaving it here as well.

Then I collected my parcel from the post office and sorted its contents as well as what I still had in my backpack and packed the parcel again with what get posted back home.

The route replanning is done as well, I will more or less follow the Macmillan Way West which-as Bryan confirmed-is mostly waymarked, although signs might be overgrown in parts. And he said that this route would provide a good insight into Exmoor. Being a way also marked on OS maps this should make navigation reasonable straightforward. My original plan had this path as a basic “handrail” for the first leg from Minehead, so using more of it just fits fine.

I spent the evening in a pub chatting with some locals about nearly everything and now I’m sure I had a beer more than was sensible. Never mind, the next three days or so won’t see too many pubs so I don’t care too much about it. And in any case I have to keep hydrated, right?

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8 thoughts on “Day 13: Rest day in Barnstaple

  1. You really deserved this rest day, fortunately finally 2 nights in the same room, and of course your extra-beer this evening. Enjoy your way through Exmoor!

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  2. in 1940 my grandfather was Minister at a church in Barnstaple. I’ve been trying to find his church on Google but I suspect it is now the Antiques Centre in Cross Street.
    Excuse me for saying so, but I think you will find plenty of pubs, no matter where you wander in England, even on Exmoor! I wish you good weather on the moors.

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    • Finally a signal again. And by now I can say: No, there are pub-free regions in England. If I had stayed on my route without devouring once, it would have been three days without any pub. Hard to believe, I admit.

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  3. Hi Mike,
    it´s so great following you here and reading about your adventures and challenges.
    Wish you a great time.
    -Package no. 1 is on it´s way

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