Saturday, 27 September 2014

A Little Bit of Everything South of Bude

Day Ten - Bude to Crackington Haven 16.4km (10.2 miles).
Time on route 4:10hrs, walking time 4:00hrs.

Monday 22 September 2014
Day 10 map
On Monday I started a two dayer on the trail.  Up until now I've only ever walked one day at a stretch.  The advantage of this is that I can pretty much run at the route not caring if I expend all my energy as I'm not walking the next day.  The obvious disadvantage is that it isn't efficient on the travel and staying over near the trail saves time travelling to/from the start/finish.  During the planning stages I dithered over how far to extend south from Bude for my first day.  Although the guide book tempted me to push onto Boscastle this day (a total of 26km), I deemed that the extra 10km of pretty steep ups and downs would be too much for me.  My leg still gets sore after 10km or so and I wanted to ensure I could walk on Tuesday too.

I parked at Crackington Haveon and caught the bus up to Bude.
14 09 22 Day 10 1 Bude (1)
The weather was perfect, sun and little wind, and the stroll by the Bude Canal was pleasant.
14 09 22 Day 10 1 Bude (2)
Low water level in the canal.
14 09 22 Day 10 1 Bude (4)
Looking back towards Bude as I climbed out of the estuary.
14 09 22 Day 10 1 Bude (6)
The first climb takes you up onto Compass Point where there is an octagonal tower adorned with compass directions.
14 09 22 Day 10 2 Compass Point Tower (1)
14 09 22 Day 10 2 Compass Point Tower (2)
A few steps further on is the trig at Efford Beacon. I couldn't fathom out what the brick construction next to it was. The lid didn't lift and there were no other markings on it.
14 09 22 Day 10 3 TP3025 - Efford Beacon (1)
The route undulates along fields with blackberry edged footpaths. I'm not sure how helpful this sign to bikers really is. Snails on the path? Really? You'll be putting up signs next saying "stones on path" or "beware, puddles."
14 09 22 Day 10 4 Erosion and sign (2)
[Note - my family have pointed out that I'm quite a dunce.  It actually says nails on path but some wag has added the s.  Well, fooled me eh?].

The path turned to sand and I walked amongst the dunes which traverse the back of Widemouth Sand. Not my favourite walking surface - tssk sand in boots :-(
14 09 22 Day 10 5 Widemouth Bay (2)
This expansive bay is heavily populated by surfers catching the Atlantic Surf.
14 09 22 Day 10 5 Widemouth Bay (6)
The route follows road for a km or so south of the bay. And I came across another 'helpful' sign.
14 09 22 Day 10 5 Widemouth Bay (5)
It was a steep downhill into Millook, a pretty hamlet.
14 09 22 Day 10 6 Millook
Today's wildlife was in the form of Cornish ponies. Weathered, tough little things.
14 09 22 Day 10 7 Ponies
The scenery was a little bit everything; fields, sand, tarmac and now woodlands, which offered some welcome shade.
14 09 22 Day 10 8 Dizzard Woods (1)
Dizzard Woods contain dwarf oaks and, according to the guide book, "nationally important lichens" reminding me of Wistman's Wood on Dartmoor.
14 09 22 Day 10 8 Dizzard Woods (2)
I came across my second trig on the path whilst traversing the woods. Sad poor thing isn't it? And no surveyor would need to unpacked their plumb bob to see if this was out of true.
14 09 22 Day 10 9 TP2791 - Dizzard Point (1)
After the woods it was into gorse lined paths.
14 09 22 Day 10 10 Castle Point (1)
Heading off into space at Castle Point.
14 09 22 Day 10 10 Castle Point (3)
A short descent into Crackington Haven finished my walking for the day. I seriously considered pushing on for another few km, but the route ahead was somewhat "all or nothing" for 7km (I had to factor in walking back to the car which was in the Haven) so I called it quits and headed to Tintagel for a cup of tea and then onto my B&B, Trenowan at Tregatta, Tintagel. I have stayed at this B&B before and strongly recommend it. It is within walking distance of the lovely Port William pub at which I dined later that evening, accompanied by a wonderful sunset.
14 09 22 Day 10 12 Sunset over Trebarwith Strand

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