In this ride we head north from Quantock Trekking, making our way along a farm track towards Middle Hill. This is a climb of approx 1 mile, climbing 175m. There are stunning views of Exmoor National Park and the Blackdown Hills in the distance.
We head right across Lydeard Hill (1), climbing higher to the Lydeard Hill car park. Muchcare Lane heads north towards Durborough Farm, and on the way there is a superb view of the River Parrett delta where it joins the Bristol Channel. On clear days we can see the island of Steepholm and even South Wales.
Muchcare Lane is quite steep in places, but the horses are very used to it. We now descend approx 170m to cross the ford at Durborough Farm (2), effectively crossing the Quantocks. Passing the old quarry, we walk up Watery Lane (3) – this is actually a stream, and can be quite fast-flowing after heavy rain!
We now reach the area between Middle Hill and Aisholt Common which is known as Fox’s Bottom (4). We pass through ancient woodland before reaching the open heathland of Aisholt Common. Here we begin the ascent to Light Gate (5) – this is a real pull and the horses have to work quite hard.
Finally we head south to Wills Neck (6), at 384m the highest point on the Quantocks. On a clear day, the views from here are simply stunning. From here we head towards Rock Farm, where we join the Metal Road which takes us back to West Bagborough and the stables.