The Jurassic Coast

I am very fortunate to live beside the sea in Dorset. The region contains some fantastic coastal scenery. The variety of coastal landscapes is a result of the region’s complex geology.

November has been quite stormy so far, but Saturday 15th November was scheduled to be an Isle of Portland Canoe Club trip and we were very fortunate with the weather. The wind dropped, it was warm and the sun even shone, some of the time.

We paddled the section of coast from Ringstead to Lulworth Cove. Ringstead is a convenient spot to start from as it has a car park and a slipway to the beach. In the summer there is also a cafe and some toilets.

Husband and I before launching at Ringstead

Husband and I before launching at Ringstead

We paddled across Ringstead bay with the Isle of Portland as a backdrop.

Ringstead Bay with Portland behind

Ringstead Bay with Portland behind

As we rounded White Nothe, the spectacular chalk cliffs of the coastline towards Durdle Door came into view. This is the start of the white cliffs of the Purbeck coast.

White Nothe

White Nothe

The next landmark is Bats Hole which is a tiny tunnel through the headland known as Bats Head, closely followed by the spectacular Durdle Door.

Durdle Door

Durdle Door

More spectacular cliff formations follow at Stair Hole. The folded limestone strata here are known as the Lulworth Crumple and there are several caves visible from the seaward side.

P1050845

Bats Head

Bats Head

It was quite lively due to the residual swell forming clapotis. Once inside stairhole it was quite calm.

And so, onto Lulworth Cove – our lunch stop. Lulworth Cove is one of the UK’s most popular scenic attractions. A gap has been eroded though the limestone cliffs by the waves and a bay has been sculpted from the softer rock behind. There were plenty of visitors at Lulworth Cove despite it being the middle of November and the ice cream shop was closed.

A little wave forms at the entrance to Lulworth Cove due to shallow water from a rock bar. Its possible to get airborne if you get the timing right.

Nearly airborne

Nearly airborne

The return trip to Ringstead was very pleasant and quite uneventful as we enjoyed the spectacular cliff scenery from an alternative angle.

Cliff fall from April 2013

Cliff fall from April 2013

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