After a night out in Weston we decided to chase the cobwebs away by walking up Crook Peak in the Mendip Hills. We had passed this landmark hill so many times when travelling up and down the M5 and always said we should climb up it, so today was the day. As we left Weston super Mare the November rain clouds hung over us. It was not going to be a walk with marvellous views, but we had all weather gear and were up for the challenge.
Crook Peak is a limestone escarpment 190m above sea level at the western end of the Mendip Hills AONB managed by the National Trust. On a clear day there are views across to Brent Knoll and the Somerset Levels, the Quantock Hills and Bridgwater Bay.
We parked our car on the Old Coach Road at Cross. The walk took us steeply up Bourton Coombe onto Wavering Down where we joined the West Mendip Way. A small group of Exmoor Ponies were grazing the turf in the mist. We turned due west past the trig point and onto Compton Hill. The limestone crags of Crook Peak rose up in front of us. From the top we could just about make out nearby Brent Knoll to the south west and Cheddar Reservoir below us to the east.
The walk then dropped down to the village of Compton Bishop, with the ancient church of St Andrew, nestling in the coombe, flying the Cross of St Andrew ready for the saints day the following week. The route back to Cross follows a footpath across the fields to Compton Farm, but as the local shoot were out in force on the fields we decided to follow Church Lane and then Webbington Road back to the Old Coach Road and our car. Whilst we were somewhat muddy, the rain had at least held off. We decided to go in search of a pint and a packet of crisps at the local pub, feeling pleased that we had defied the winter weather and walked somewhere we hadn’t walked before.
The walk we did was 4.5 miles long (7.2 km) and took around 2 ½ hours. We used the ‘Somerset - Bath to the Quantocks, Great short walks for all the family’ guide book.
25th November 2019