Exe to Axe Marathon Walk Challenge

Exe to Axe Marathon Walking Challenge

Sunday 2nd April 2023

Walkers rules,information and route details

Start 0800hrs. Cut off 1800hrs.

Please be aware that a number of previous runners have classed part of the route you will be walking as an extremely tough course. The second part of this walk from Sidmouth is very challenging. If you do not make the cut off times at Sidmouth and Branscombe you will be withdrawn as you will have no chance of finishing in time. A bus will be provided to transport you to the finish.

With around 4000ft of ascent, two thirds of which are in the last 10 miles, Runners World has previously described this event as a “…brute of a race with some outstanding views…” and has previously been voted one of the best races in the country.

The Route

This is a self-navigating challenge.

The GPX file of the route can be found here. Written directions can be found here.

Remember that maps and apps are just an aid to navigation. You need to interpret these against the ground and make your route selection. Time getting lost is time wasted. Refer to your map/app constantly.

The route will have no specific markers relevant to this challenge. This ensures that we have the minimum possible impact on what is a beautiful and natural environment.

Be advised that the Club’s 22 mile JP’s Exe to Axe race will be using marshals and markings running in parallel to this event using only the Coast Path.

Do not go into Lime Kiln car park in Budleigh Salterton, marathon walkers turn left into Granary Lane which leads into South Farm Road. Follow this road around a sharp right hand bend then in a short distance take the footpath on the left.

If you are not already familiar with the area you can get the general idea by looking at an ordinary road map and following the coastline from Exmouth to Seaton.

OS Explorer Maps 115 (Exmouth and Sidmouth) and 116 (Lyme Regis and Bridport) provide more detail. Apart from a loop inland along the river Otter, the route follows the Coast Path from Exmouth to Seaton, (sections 44 and 45), with its Acorn logo embossed on all signposts.

The simple rule for most of the route is: keep the sea on your right and follow the coast path acorn symbols.

Safety on the South West Coast Path

Keep a safe distance from the edge of the cliff at all times. If the ground is loose or slippery and you feel unsure at any time head inland.

The nature of the Coast Path means on certain sections you will be close to the edge of the cliff. This represents a ‘significant’ risk and extra care must be taken. You are to make your own dynamic risk assessment.

You must carry a fully charged mobile phone with the ‘What3Words’ app loaded so you can be located in case of accident. Also the walk organiser’s number in case of emergency: 07734 581782


All entries are through SiEntries and close on 20th March.

Sorry no transfers or refunds.

Challenge numbers will be handed out at the start.

Start time 0800hrs Cut off time at Axe Yacht Club 1800hrs

Check points and water stations:

Budleigh Salterton,White Bridge
Open 0945hrs Cut off time 1200hrs

Sidmouth the Ham
Open 1030hrs Cut off time 1400hrs

Branscombe Beach
Open 1115hrs Cut off time 1545hrs

Seaton, finish at Axe Yacht Club
Open 1145hrs Cut off time 1800hrs

On arriving at a check point make yourself known to the marshals with your name and walk number. This is a safety point so we can make sure you are on route

If you miss a check point or expect to arrive late you must call the walk organiser on 07734 581782.

Kit list

To be carried on your person at all times whilst on the course:

  • Means of navigation, either a physical map, a GPS device with the GPS route loaded or these written instructions.
  • Waterproof map case or bag to hold maps or phone.
  • Check point closing times.
  • Water
  • Energy bars or gels
  • Waterproof
  • Warm layer


If you are undertaking this challenge you will no doubt be an experienced walker who understands how the weather can change and deteriorate quickly especially on the coastline. Check the weather the day before and come prepared.

Pre-walk transport

This is an optional £10. Leaving Seaton coach park, opposite Seaton Tramway at 0705hrs taking you to the start at Exmouth. This is available only on the condition that you book your place in advance. If you did not book a place on the Si Entries form and now want to you can do so at: events@sidmouthrunningclub.co.uk


There is a Premier Inn very close to the finish. Speaking to one of the managers we are informed that the cheapest way to book is online. Email Seaton.PI@premierinn.com. Telephone 01297 300176.

The coach will pick you up in their carpark at 0700hrs. The coach must be booked in advance at events@sidmouthrunningclub.co.uk

Get a parking voucher from reception and that will last until you return from the walk.

Baggage van

A bag can be transported from the start to the finish for you if required. You must attach the label from your walk number to your bag.

Be aware

This is a tough challenge, please only enter if you are capable of walking this distance and able to cope with the hilly and varied terrain. You take full responsibility for your welfare, preparedness and must medically self-authorise yourself to walk. If in any doubt at all please contact your GP.

Completing it is an achievement so please ensure you are prepared for this challenge.


There are a number of places along the route where your family or friends can support you. Some good places are Budleigh sea front; Sidmouth Esplanade where there are a number of cafes; Branscombe Beach, the Sea Shanty is a great place to watch from; Beer at the bottom of the village by the slip to the beach; along Seaton seafront to the finish.

Public toilets

These are located at the start, Budleigh Salterton, Otterton Mill (not public), Sidmouth, Branscombe, Beer, Seaton

And last but not least

Please remember that not only are you out to enjoy yourself there will be others not participating in this challenge enjoying the route too. Both the Coast Path and the paths along the river Otter are public spaces, you do not own them. Be considerate to others and beware of those walking dogs. The future of these events depends on you and your behaviour.