Walking Golden Cap and Fossil Hunting on the Jurassic Coast
My youngest has just turned 6 and is gemstone mad. Like his brother I knew he had to go fossil hunting so we found ourselves taking our youngest on the same fossil expedition we took his brother to 3.5 years before. This time the whole family went to the fossil talk and all hunted fossils on the beach courtesy of Charmouth Heritage Coast Centre. It doesn't matter that you hear the same thing again, a refresher is always a good idea; there were certain rocks like beefsteak rocks that I had forgotten about from last time. Now it was the earliest in the year that we have fossil hunted before, and that coupled with four of us looking for fossils, we had the best fossil hunt we have ever had in one go. We found calcite anomites, a pyrite anomite, anomites made from beefsteak rock and anomite prints in hard rock, a devils toenail, lots of belemites and crinoids, I got really excited and thought I found some fossilised wood, however my guide thought it was a horses tooth.(!) We absolutely did not mind it was cold with the threat of rain at any given moment because we were having the haul of our lifetime! For more information on fossil hunting, you can read my previous post here.
After easily losing 3 hours on the beach, we went for a bit of flea shopping in West Bay. The Customs House Emporium is a place I love to look around, you can find all sorts of things you wouldn't normally buy, but at great prices, such nik naks are great little finds. Also we have always found some great second hand vinyl to add to the collection. If you need to kill a little time before a dinner reservation, this is the place to do it! As this was my son's birthday weekend I did have a special dinner planned. Dinner on a (stationary) train carriage at the Station Kitchen restaurant. This is the second time I have been here, but the first for my family and I know they would love it, especially my eldest son who is becoming more and more adventurous with his food (to nigh on chef quality). It is a treat but worth it for a special occaision. We all had lots of fresh fish cooked really well, paired with delicious wine for the adults. The beauty of this restaurant is all the local produce that features on the menu as well as the quirky dining surrounds that makes it an unforgettable evening. The next day I had booked Sunday lunch at one of my favourite pubs, The Anchor Inn in Seatown, with a view that we would have an excellent coastal walk first. It was a dry but very misty day, however that didn't deter us from wanting a second day of sea air. As we were bit rusty after our winter slumber I wanted a good walk but not a really long walk, so we could fit in lunch and head back home ready to start the week.
Using my trusty Ciccerone guide for Jurassic coast walks, we picked the one that starts in Langdon hill and takes us up to Golden Cap before circling, back to Seatown, then after lunch heading back to the van. Starting the walk on the hills ledge you see Seatown bay that sweeps upward towards Golden Cap. Golden Cap is situated between Bridport and Charmouth and is the highest point on the south west coast of Britain. The views along the world heritage site of the Jurassic coast are spectacular, even in the fog. We were enjoying the walk so much we extended it slightly to the left to Stanton St Gabriels before walking back on ourselves to head to Seatown. The bay to the west under Golden cap is also rich with fossils should you have the urge to do it all over again. Such a wonderful much needed weekend away after the hibernating months of winter and good to be back out in nature.