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Devon C2C options

Posted: 14 Jan 2020, 5:13pm
by rich2j
Hi all first post here!

I want to do the Devon c2c this summer and am figuring out my options. Has anyone parked up a car on the route and done a circular or cycle and train back to car?

The only place i can think to park for a few days is Exeter airport long stay. I would then either have to cycle to barnstaple or Plymouth and start the route plus get a train (or cycle) back to Exeter.

Has anyone done this or have nay recommendations on where a car can be left for four days?

Edit: I’ll be coming from West Midlands area and i May be combining the trip with a family holiday , which is why I may need to take my car. It may work out I can just take the train from Birmingham to Plymouth but if i need to use the car I was just thinking of best places for good long stay. I’ll look into train stations and campsites. Has anyone used the airport long stay just for reference?

Thanks

Re: Devon C2C options

Posted: 14 Jan 2020, 11:04pm
by Norman H
We started from Plymouth and I left my car parked at our overnight campsite at Brixton. Another pair from our party stayed at the premier Inn on the outskirts of Plymouth and were able to leave their car parked there.

We planned to return to Plymouth by taking the train from Barnstaple to Exeter and cycling back over Dartmoor. In the event the weather was so bad that we gave Dartmoor a miss and instead got off the train at Yeoford and cycled back from there.

Re: Devon C2C options

Posted: 15 Jan 2020, 7:16am
by Mick F
Welcome to the forum!

Where are you?
Coming far by car?

If you want to park in Plymouth, it'll cost, but if you park at Gunnislake Station it's free for as long as you want.
Take the train to Plymouth and start your ride.
It's possible to get a train from Barnstaple/Exeter/Plymouth and back to Gunnislake, but you'll have to book the bike on the train Exeter/Plymouth. The other trains are local trains and have bike space as first come first served, but there's plenty space.

The Gunny/Plymouth train is only available as day returns. Otherwise, it's two singles.

Re: Devon C2C options

Posted: 15 Jan 2020, 7:55am
by honesty
Someone else asked the same question recently, so worth having a search to see what was recommended there. I think parking near the station in Exeter is a good compromise as trains back from Barnstaple to Plymouth require changes.

Re: Devon C2C options

Posted: 15 Jan 2020, 8:34am
by honesty

Re: Devon C2C options

Posted: 15 Jan 2020, 11:44am
by NATURAL ANKLING
Hi,
Last time I looked railway parking was incredibly cheap, especially if you buy a week ticket.
Take Mick up on his offer, Sounds too good to be true, He might even make you a cup of tea :mrgreen:

Re: Devon C2C options

Posted: 15 Jan 2020, 12:41pm
by Chat Noir
We did the Devon C2C the other year, delightful route through some of the quieter places you’ll ever go. We went on our normal touring bikes with 23 or 25 tyres.

We were camping at Ilfracombe and then cycled down to Plymouth and back to Ilfracombe, the campsite there happy for us to leave our campervan parked for few days. Spent the first night at campsite at East Yarde, very small, delightful café and some nights is also a restaurant and well worth going to – if it’s still open. Next night we stopped at campsite in Plymouth then returned the same way, stopping at East Yarde again. It’s about 100 miles each way so four fifty mile days but the masses of lanes give choice for alternative routes if you want a change on the way back. Given the complexities and time taken travelling from one end to the other by public transport cycling both ways not such a bad idea. Mick F has given good suggestion about parking near to Plymouth. I recall some bits were hilly, even very hilly (north of Braunton and quite a haul up from Plymouth as well), but always a pleasure. Part of my childhood was in west Devon so always happy to revisit the area: cycling alongside the Torridge is as good as it gets.

Re: Devon C2C options

Posted: 15 Jan 2020, 4:30pm
by Mick F
Chat Noir wrote: .................. cycling alongside the Torridge is as good as it gets.
Daughter No1 and grandson live in Bideford, And we were up there during the summer and walked the cycle/ped route from East-the-Water up the Torridge to Westleigh and called in at the Westleigh Inn for lunch.

We had Sailor the Dog with us and sat in the delightful garden with a few beers and a lovely lunch.
Highly recommended! :D

I have an idea for a ride later this year to drive up to Merton with the bike in the back and park up, then ride up the Route27 via Torrington to Bideford and maybe beyond to Barnstaple if I fancy it, then back to Merton.

Re: Devon C2C options

Posted: 15 Jan 2020, 9:20pm
by Thehairs1970
Chat Noir wrote:. Spent the first night at campsite at East Yarde, very small, delightful café and some nights is also a restaurant and well worth going to – if it’s still open. Next night we stopped at campsite in Plymouth then returned the same way, stopping at East Yarde again.


Last time I looked East Yarde had closed (last year).

We stayed here on a shakedown ride: https://westdownfarmwildcamping.com/ Not too far off the C2C.

Have you thought of driving to Ilfracombe (ish). Parking the car in a nearby village, normally free, cycling to Ilfracombe and on to C2C. Then at Plymouth, leave one person at your accommodation with the bikes and get the train to Ilfracombe, taxi to car and drive back to Plymouth to pick up the bikes. Or cycle back again!

If deciding on the Plymouth end as a start, Yelverton is on the C2C, you could probably leave the car in the village there as long as you are considerate and pick it up once done.

Re: Devon C2C options

Posted: 16 Jan 2020, 9:10am
by Mick F
Thehairs1970 wrote: ........ Yelverton is on the C2C, you could probably leave the car in the village there as long as you are considerate and pick it up once done.
Yes, easy.

Just here. On the route too, and with public loos. Free carpark, pubs nearby.
https://www.google.co.uk/maps/@50.49086 ... 312!8i6656

Re: Devon C2C options

Posted: 16 Jan 2020, 12:42pm
by honesty
Thehairs1970 wrote:
Chat Noir wrote:. Spent the first night at campsite at East Yarde, very small, delightful café and some nights is also a restaurant and well worth going to – if it’s still open. Next night we stopped at campsite in Plymouth then returned the same way, stopping at East Yarde again.


Last time I looked East Yarde had closed (last year).

We stayed here on a shakedown ride: https://westdownfarmwildcamping.com/ Not too far off the C2C.

Have you thought of driving to Ilfracombe (ish). Parking the car in a nearby village, normally free, cycling to Ilfracombe and on to C2C. Then at Plymouth, leave one person at your accommodation with the bikes and get the train to Ilfracombe, taxi to car and drive back to Plymouth to pick up the bikes. Or cycle back again!

If deciding on the Plymouth end as a start, Yelverton is on the C2C, you could probably leave the car in the village there as long as you are considerate and pick it up once done.


The cafe has recently been taken under new ownership, but it's not had camping options for a few years. The campsite Smytham Manor is just a little further on, and having now stayed there a few times, it's very nice. Remember to take trunks for the pool! ;)

Re: Devon C2C options

Posted: 16 Jan 2020, 3:25pm
by NATURAL ANKLING
Hi,
Mick F wrote:
Chat Noir wrote: .................. cycling alongside the Torridge is as good as it gets.
Daughter No1 and grandson live in Bideford, And we were up there during the summer and walked the cycle/ped route from East-the-Water up the Torridge to Westleigh and called in at the Westleigh Inn for lunch.

We had Sailor the Dog with us and sat in the delightful garden with a few beers and a lovely lunch.
Highly recommended! :D

I have an idea for a ride later this year to drive up to Merton with the bike in the back and park up, then ride up the Route27 via Torrington to Bideford and maybe beyond to Barnstaple if I fancy it, then back to Merton.

I did that on my coast ride, cant remember which part but I (other side of water looking at bideford town I think) decided to get my head down on a bench along the river on the cycle path (gardens that run adjacent to the path 15 foot parallel to) the bench was too short and my sleeping bag which I placed over me did not have a full zip so it did not cover me that well.
At the quay I managed to get some water from a chap doing the garden :)
Its a pleasant enough route, plenty of youths around having fun on the path, one group suggested to their mate that he give me a kiss :lol: Just try it mate :P
And motorcycles being ridden along the path too :(
It would be a nice ride for you mick as there will be pubs, maybe do a loop and come back on the road via Barnstaple to Torridge.
The path I found after a while a bit bumpy, though I was on 23's and it was getting to end of day.

Re: Devon C2C options

Posted: 16 Jan 2020, 4:12pm
by Mick F
Yes, I envisage a circular.
Merton to Bideford - and beyond perhaps - then real road back to Merton.
Merton has big layby opposite the start of the track heading north.

Sorry!!! :shock: :oops:
I mean Meeth!!!
Why has no-one corrected me?
https://www.google.co.uk/maps/@50.85158 ... 384!8i8192
Same road, but further north.

Here is the entrance to the old railway track.
https://www.google.co.uk/maps/@50.85179 ... 384!8i8192

Re: Devon C2C options

Posted: 16 Jan 2020, 4:23pm
by NATURAL ANKLING
Hi,
Re Meeth railway, certainly visit (I think that's a station?) but this is and was(?) last time I travelled the route that grassy muddy forest trail?

Its sown on the attatchment below.
Your second link is at that entrance in meeth, I I got that right.
That's what I saw when I went there last.
2020-01-16_162008.jpg

R 27 from hatherliegh has some single path stuff as well going west?

this is what I remember-
2020-01-16_162437.jpg

Re: Devon C2C options

Posted: 16 Jan 2020, 4:42pm
by NATURAL ANKLING
Hi,
It gets better-
You should be able to see the routes on google earth maps, I had to leap frog some when you get to a sign tarka trail out of meeth where you leave the road at 90 degrees.
My sort of heaven but not yours maybe :)
Its looks like they have finally hard surfaced the track now, it was a forrest before.
But at meth skip along the road to the 90 degree turn and it hard surface there on.
While you are there you might as well do both cycle paths?