Saturday, May 29, 2010

Par to Fowey (6th March)

Today's walk was shorter but very pretty. We began by driving to Fowey and catching a bus back to Par to begin the 6 mile walk. Those knowledgeable ones amongst you will realise that we've missed another little bit, it takes you round the docks at Par and we decided we could do without walking past them.

We were blessed with another glorious day, still, sunny and beautiful. The little harbour of Polkerris is amazing, a very sweet little village which has avoided modern development so far!

From here the path meandered up through woods and along the cliff edge to the incredible candy-striped Daymark built in 1832.

It was designed like this to make it distinguishable from other south cornish headlands! The views from here were stunning, down to Dodman and beyond, and up the Fowey Valley.

Some of you will have read the story of Rebecca by Daphne du Maurier; the inspiration coming from Menabilly at the head of this valley. This is the beach house of Manderley!

Fowey welcomed us back with the coast path taking to the streets .

We enjoyed these signposts which mark the Saint's Way, a modern take on an (imagined?) route, possibly taken by Celtic holy men between Fowey and Padstow to avoid the sea trip around Land's End.

Another view through a keyhole! Looking across at Polruan from Fowey.

Fowey was charming, we pictured the narrow streets rammed with visitors in the summer... and were glad we were there when it was quiet.

Tim spotted these doors, and they had to make an appearance here - I'm sure they tell a story.

It had been a lovely gentle walk today, such a picturesue part of the county.

Monday, May 24, 2010

Mevagisssey to St Austell (March 10th)

This will be a shorter blog although I couldn't get the pictures to upload despite numerous attempts - in the end have had to do each one separately and now I've added a few extra for good measure!

We actually caught the bus to St Austell and walked it 'the wrong way' but you're getting good at coping! So we began with the streets of St Austell and were soon along the road to Porthpean. From here the path became prettier... here is the usual tree for Jac :-) The coast here is quite different from other parts we've walked, this is Phoebe's Point with trees clinging on quite precariously. This is an area for old pilchard cellars and we saw ruins of them in several places.
We ate our lunch here... right out on the end of Black Head, a lovely spot which had been fortified in the iron age. After Big A's reference to AL Rowse, I thought you should see this... not sure if he'd like this particularly either! It's at the entrance to Black Head. Just around the corner from here is a very tranquil place, Hallane Mill, and up the valley behind it, Trenarren. It had the feel of St M P simply beautiful. I really liked this area, called The Vans, with a steep climb through gentle woods.

There were a couple of valleys to cross,

sometimes 'dry'
but one had a little bridge built so high, it seemed to allow for people and cattle to get access down to a little beach.

Here's Tim explaining!

It's strange what things catch the eye... ivy...

birds on a rock...

and the obvious views up or down the coast!
At Pentewan, the old harbour, once used to export china clay, is now choked with sand, the old pilchard cellars were just visible at Portgiskey,
and then we were back to Mevagissey with its charming harbour

busy with boats.

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Portloe to Mevagissey (9th March)

Here I am again... The Travelling Bears have spurred me back into action! There is so much catching up to do!

I'm writing this at the dining table with the sliding door wide open and the sun pouring in. It's going to be another HOT day!

Back in March we had a similar amount of sun; another glorious day for our walk, and one which started out with a lovely meeting.

Tim and I drove to Probus in order to catch a bus to Portloe. We parked up by the football field and were fascinated by the changes to the Roseveth. As we walked past, the lady who lives there was going up her steps, so I plucked up courage and asked if Joan Unsworth was still living next door. "Oh yes," she said, "you've just missed her. She's gone to catch the bus."

We almost ran to the bus stop to see if we could catch her - no sign though and we stood waiting for the bus disappointed to have missed her.

Suddenly, out of the little shop, Joan appeared and walked across the road to wait for the same bus as us! It was lovely to see her and chat, talking fondly of Mum and a little doubtfully about the changes to the house. We shared the bus journey to Tregony catching up about the family and "The walk"; it was a perfect start to the day.

We got off the bus at Portloe and started our walk, we had to go at a reasonable pace because of the bus timetable and the desire to get to Mevagissey in time to catch a bus back to St Austell where we could then get a connecting bus back to Probus! It was all very complex, but Tim had worked out all the schedules in advance which was a great help.
This walk was through familiar territory ... a tree for Jac;
beautiful sunlit pathways;
East and West Portholland
where this sign sums it all up;
Caerhayes Castle
and Porthluney beach
a family special; the path took us through many gates - i loved this handle;
a stone man
- not quite the match of your Tasmanian ones Big A; it was along this part of the path that an adder lay curled up, Tim was walking ahead of me at this point and must have disturbed it. I almost stepped on it, it hissed at me and slithered away into the undergrowth with its distinct markings along its back. Unfortunately i wasn't quick enough with the camera :-(
Hemmick, with its little ford,
stands at the foot of the hill where we used to camp when the children were little - famous for Buzz and Bee in the play area
Hemmick Beach
and on around to Dodman Point, overlooking Vault or Bow Beach.
From here we walked through Gorran Haven
with its expensive houses;
around Pabyer Point
which had a very ancient, solid feel to it and on to Portmellon where the tide was in and had been splashing on the road.
From here there were lovely views back to Chapel Point
with its three amazing buildings. The path follows the road on round to Mevagissey.
Tim noticed this great, old sign
- how things have changed!
We were in time for our bus and were whisked to St Austell. Whilst we waited for the connecting bus I noticed this... isn't it an amazing mural! A fascinating end to a lovely day...