Dunsdon to Vealand Farm – a walk of approximately 4 miles.
You will need to keep your dogs on leads for this walk. It is a fairly level walk, with just a little bit of rough ground to contend with. You will need to bring a packed lunch as there are no facilities on the way. If you visit between May and September you will see the beauty of the Culm wild meadows in flower. There are also butterflies and dragonflies galore!
Park up at the Dunsdon National Nature Reserve, in the village of Dunsdon, just before Gains Cross. The entrance to the car park is through a gate on the west side of the small lane. Drive up the driveway and park.
At the nature reserve entrance sign, turn left and follow the boardwalk through the wet woodland, heading west.
You will shortly come to a lovely viewpoint where you can occasionally hear the heron birds calling. Cross the open marshy Culm grassland towards the Bude Canal where you may find some cattle. It can be very muddy in places.
You will come up to a small bridge over the overgrown canal, which you need to go across. When you get to this point you have a choice. You can access the main Culm grassland fields of Dunsdon reserve. Alternatively, you can turn left and follow the towpath on the west side of the canal heading south all the way to Vealand Farm nature reserve.
The Old Bude Canal is a great place for wildlife. There are also many rushes and iris, and the canal is lined with meadowsweet, as well as other wild flowers.
You will go through a dark conifer woods on your right, and you can glimpse Vealand Farm nature reserve through the willows.
When you reach a very small stone bridge with a sign to Vealand Farm nature reserve and car park, turn right and leave the canal. After that, turn left and follow a track parallel to the canal and enter the meadows.
Return to Vealand Farm nature reserve car park and explore the new paths through the restored Culm grassland in front of you. New ponds have been created to encourage wildlife including dragonflies. Return to Vealand Farm nature reserve car park and the canal towpath.
Retrace your steps along the canal, back to Dunsdon National Nature Reserve car park.
I hope you find these walks helpful. I would love to hear what you think. Tell me what you think by posting your comments below. Why don’t you Share this with your friends and family by clicking the Facebook icon or following us on Twitter?
About the Author: Carole Langman works behind the scenes at Bowerland Cottage Holidays and Devon Dogs as the Business Manager. Her office is always a hive of activity, and with the vast amounts of work Carole has, we never really know how she gets through it all! To unwind, she loves gardening, hikes around Bowerland, travelling and writing.