This is our local run from home taking us along part of the Coastal Path around the Isle of Wight. We start on the road then switch to footpaths and an uphill shlep to the top of Headon Warren which overlooks the furthest Western tip of the Island. We take a circular route around the top of the Warren then drop back down to sea level along the seafront and beaches of Totland and Colwell Bay to home.
With a total elevation of 134m (440ft) the dogs just love this route as they are off lead for most of it! With a wild landscape, dramatic coastal scenery and soft footpaths to run along it’s a perfect trail run for novices, despite the first half being uphill.
Once at the summit on a clear day you get a 360 degree view of the Island to the Needles lighthouse in the West across the Solent to the Poole Harbour and Isle of Purbeck beyond. Looking back towards Tennyson Down and South West Island coast your gaze is taken over the pretty harbour town of Yarmouth and River Yar taking in green rural farmland and woods of the West Wight.
For visitors Colwell Bay is a great starting point as there is metered parking and toilets with free roadside parking (although this is scarce as the Bay becomes busier through the year). Both The Hut restaurant (dog friendly) and beachside cafes open from Easter and we have a beach hut there too so look out for the ginger dogs on sunny days and come say hello!
Facing the sea turn left and follow the coastal footpath around to Totland Bay. Carry on running past the Pier Cafe and Waterfront Pub until you reach the old lifeboat station, it’s really as far as you can go. Turn left taking the wooden steps up. At the top join the road and turn right. After a few hundred yards you will see a footpath and sign on your right for the coastal path. Follow this up through the woods and keep on going until you reach the top!
At the top of Headon Warren turn right and follow the chalk path along the ridge and drop down to the old fort.
Turn around and head back up and back! This time when you reach a bench before the top of the Warren you can choose to go left, right or straight on. All paths lead to the same spot so it’s up to you.
5 reasons we love this route
Headon Warren is usually quiet so the dogs can run free
The views are amazing!
Jumping in the sea on a hot day at the end of a run is awesome
You get great coffee and food at The Hut
We’ve got a beach hut at Colwell Bay so you can pop in and say hello!
Be aware of
The seafront and parking gets very busy in the summer
Dogs are not allowed on Totland Beach from 1st May to 30th September and have restricted access to parts of Colwell Beach for the same dates
Our favourite West Wight route before we head South of the Island.
Where exactly is the Isle of Wight?!
It’s an Island just 40 by 20km (25 by 13 miles) off the South Coast of England with over 500 miles of footpaths! Follow us on Instagram @spikethevizsla and Twitter or search for #5khoundbound to follow our running journey.
Title Ref: The Cat in the Hat. Dr Seuss.