Monday, September 22, 2014

Crantock to Perranporth

We've need to get out and about again for some time.  Summer was a series of guests and a very busy county with the roads rammed after 10am especially on a Saturday.

We waited until the majority of 'emmets' had left and then picked a glorious autumnal day for a planned walk from Crantock to Perranporth.  We parked in Perranporth, back from the seafront as the first rays of sunshine broke through the clouds:

On the way down to the bus stop a Jackdaw provided a lucky gift right on top of Helen's head, so that got rid of one emergency tissue...

We caught the first bus to Crantock, alighted and then headed down to a still very quiet beach, at an extremely low tide, hence this massive expanse of golden sands:

The morning light, as the haze lifted, was beautiful:

The sand had a number of shapes and imprints left by the retreating water:

Some birds:

An some early bird humans too:

A lot of rocks normally under water are exposed at this time of year, so you can see the underlying geology:

As well as lots of mussels, limpets, whelks, etc:

We walked from Crantock, following the coastal path, to Porth Joke or Polly Joke as it is known locally, a delightful secluded and quiet beach:

An increasingly more common sight in Cornwall is the Mediterranean Gull, expanding its range in response to our rapidly changing climate:

We'll be heading back to Polly Joke in Spring as we saw lots of Stonechats, Linnet and other birds and suspect it will be a great spot for singing territorial birds and photography.

From Polly Joke we next reached Holywell Bay, where we settled for some water and a light snack, before heading on again.  We wanted to cut off the headland but it turns out the roads marked are for an abandoned MOD base which remains off limits, so we did in fact have to walk around the headland, following the coastal path.

At one point, as you turn the corner to see Perran Sands, the cliff path is the kind I hate, narrow, rough and on a slope with a short distance to a plummet of some height.  I couldn't do it and couldn't turn around to go back so headed up the hill to the summit, gesturing for Helen to continue, which she did.  I eventually scrambled up to the main road into the MOD base and took this to meet a track going down to the Sands.  Helen had by now got worried about me so she set off scrambling up the hillside to find me.  Cue mutual distress and much shouting and waving of arms to locate each other.

It was a relief to get down to the Sands and to walk the last mile and a half at sea level, with the surf building as the tide turned to come in: 

At the quiet end of the beach we were delighted to see a few Sanderling:

Finally we reached the goal for a (late) lunch at the pub, however it was rammed so went into the town away from the seafront and found a nice cafe for a belated veggie breakfast, which was delicious!  A real sense of satisfaction from having completed the walk though it proved tougher than expected, we learned some planning lessons which will help us explore Cornwall further...


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