Basset Hound Walkers Mendips

Cheddar Reservoir

This is a proper walk for our Bassets. Woods, fields, a church, some pony cropped grass - plus the odd wee bump thrown in for good measure. And here's some really great news: there are two bumps going down - one a very long one - but only one hill going up, unless I've miscounted. And some stupendous views over the Bristol Channel.

The start is just off the A38 not far south of Bristol Airport. It will be our 126th walk – only five miles – and leads us from the ridge nr Axbridge/Winscombe, down through woods, along the valley then a gentle stroll up to the main Mendip ridge just below Crook Peak, the hill we all see when whizzing along the M5. In reasonable weather – we'll be able to see much of the Bristol Channel, Wales, Wells and Glastonbury Tor and all foreign parts as far as the eye can see.

The start from the car park is already at 350ft - aren't I kind to you? - so we then drop gently through lovely beech woods to just above the village of Cross, turn right and have elevenses in a dead flat rabbit nibbled grass floor of a quarry. It's then level for more than a mile field walking with the main Mendip ridge above us. After reaching Compton Bishop church we perambulate round and the smart amongst you may notice a slight upwards tilt. I'll mention it now in case you miss it. Gaining the ridge we admire the extensive views in all directions. Now there is a further undulation to the summit - but on sheep nibbled grass like a billiard table, but with a slope - to breast 707ft, but from then on, hey, it's all downhill to our motors.


Mendips start

(Click map to enlarge)


To find the start (10.30am):

Coming from the south turn off the M5 at J22 and then follow the A38 towards Cheddar. Ignore the turning right to Axbridge and Cheddar at the cross-roads at Cross and ascend a long hill looking out for speed camera on the right for when you come home. Near the top turn off left into Winscombe Hill just before you pass the "Welcome to North Somerset" sign and Texaco garage and into the King's Wood car park. (photo right). It is not a large car park so you may have to park in the road.

From the east drive up the Cheddar valley (A371) till you reach the A38 and follow the instructions above.

From the north proceed along the M5 leaving at Junction 21. Then follow the A370 towards Weston-S-Mare till the second roundabout and then A371 towards Locking, Banwell and Winscombe. At the traffic lights at Sidcot (Quaker School) where you meet the A38 turn right for around a mile. As you top the hill with a Texaco garage on the right, take the next first right over the hill and bend into Winscombe Hill and King's Wood will be a few hundred yards on the left. (see photo right). If you see the "Welcome to Somerset" sign you've gone too far.

Map ref ST421560. Postcode of the house next to the car park is BS25 1DH.

Kings Wood

King's Wood

Old quarry

Quarry elevenses: no we don't have to walk up there - unless you really want to.

Crook Peak

Crook Peak from the ridge, with Bristol Channel just visible in the distance.

View from ridge

Brent Knoll and the Quantocks in the distance

Mendip ridge

On the ridge. See how flat and well nibbled the grass is? You could wear your bedroom slippers along here.

Winscombe Hill

Approach to Kings Wood

On A38 approaching from the south: turn LEFT here.
Note Texaco garage just in sight over hill.

Approach from North

This is view of same junction from the north: you have just
passed the Texaco garage on your right. Turn RIGHT here.

King's Wood car park

King's Wood car park. Regrettably not very big but if crowded then just park in the lane.


See how flat this is.

Compton Bishop

Compton Bishop nestling in the valley.




Click here to return to Basset Hound Walkers Home Page