80a – Lulworth

The Lulworth Crumple – a strange name, don’t you think?  It is a peculiar name.  Before we got to see it there were many theories as to what it might be in our household.  What was it, this Lulworth Crumple?

Something you do after a long, hard walk through the Lulworth Ranges?

A locally-made cider of particular potency?

A Dorset dance?


The Lulworth Crumple is one of the finest geological examples of its type in the world, and is quite simply spectacular.  Here it is (you can click on the photo to enlarge it, and this is really is recommended as only by doing this do you really get a good idea of the scale of it):

Lulworth CrumpleThe Lulworth Crumple is the result of a minor prang some 30 million years ago, when Africa collided with Europe.  It was at this time that a mountain-building period occurred and the Alps were formed.  The pressure pushed all the way back here, folding the rock strata into the pattern we see today.

Lulworth is the perfect place to see this crumple, because its rock is of just the right sort to expose it.  The Lulworth Crumple is found at Stair Hole, about 150 metres to the west of Lulworth Cove.  Stair Hole is another Lulworth Cove in the making.  The sea has broken through the harder limestone rock and is now in the process of hollowing out the softer rock behind it.  The Lulworth Crumple has been exposed in the process.  You can see the caves and sea arches in the next photo, as the sea continues to wear its way through the harder rock.

Stair Hole and the Lulworth CrumpleThe Lulworth Crumple – amazing!  A lot of people visiting Lulworth Cove don’t actually go to Stair Hole, despite its proximity.  Don’t be one of those people!  It is well worth the effort of walking west 150 metres – that’s all it takes to get there from Lulworth Cove itself.

Stair HolePoints on this part of the walk (copy and paste the co-ordinates into Google Earth):

  • Lulworth Crumple:  N 50° 37.065 W 002° 15.090
  • Stair Hole:  N 50° 37.070 W 002° 15.140

Walk #80 Statistics (of which this post forms the first part):


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5 Responses to 80a – Lulworth

  1. winderjssc says:

    Great first picture with the people on the beach below the crumple giving a sense of scale. Wonderful place.

  2. Pingback: 80d – Durdle Door to Bat’s Head | The Coastal Path

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