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Pauls blog - 2012

THE WALK  . . . . . retracing our steps

DAY 1  -  Saturday 12th May 2012

 

Totton to Sennen Cove


After bacon and sausage sandwiches we finally departed on our way with Debbie dribbling all the way to Cornwall in beautiful sunshine. Good trip down and called into the wonderful coach house on the A30 for tea and home made cakes.
By 5.30pm we arrived in sun drenched Sennen with Crystal clear views over the sea and coast. it was not long before the 5 or 6 Tributes had quenched our thirsts from travelling and into the restaurant for local crab soup and mackerel. brief bit of humour when the waitress recited the order and quoted one pollock and we all thought he had been here before. Into the bar now for a few more beers and a great first night when we have probably overdone it again.

 

DAY 2  -  Sunday 13th May 2012

 

Sennen to Mousehole

Ah Notty's birthday. His 53rd and what a way to spend it. Debbie had limbered him up nicely, not a cloud in the sky and we only needed shorts and t shirts at 7.30am when we had an impromptu meet on the sea wall. After a fine breakfast we presented his card and were soon heading for Lands End where Notty had his picture taken at the signpost. The flora is spectacular but has been outdone by Al s boots, fluorescent green the colourful little chap. this part of the Path is stunningly beautiful and with a clear view of the Scilly Isles and Wolf Rock lighthouse it was at its best.
Biddy spotted a couple of large seals masquerading as rocks which was a good spot and we were soon in Porthwarra for tea and homemade birthday cakes and tea. Out the breeze it was Baking and at the end of the day Biddy Notty and myself resemble a bunch of tomatoes.
We were soon at Porthcurno and with time pressing walked straight through missing a swim on the beach and onwards to Penberth Cove where there is a timber capstan to haul the fishing boats up the slipway. soon after this Notty and Al decided to give up on the simple task of keeping the sea on the right and went walkabout inland. 20minutes later we gave up on them and walked on to find them vaulting barbed wire fences to get back on track. (twats). We had to get a move on to catch the cafe at Lamorna but although we were too late for crab sandwiches (twats) we were ok for a fish platter. With only three miles and a hop over a couple of slow worms we were soon sampling the Tribute in The Ship in in Mousehole. A great day, pure blue skies, wild flowers that you had to see to believe including fascias and gladioli, rock hopping which I love, views to die for and a great bit of fodder at the end. 20121 steps some of which Del wish he had not done and looking forward to a cuddle with Biddy and the KY in a couple of hours.

 

DAY 3  -  Monday 14th May 2012

 

Mousehole to Porthleven

Day 3 and what happened? But first last night. I was luvvin it as Biddy and I were sharing a nice big double bed. We were both burning (from the sun) and we had bucket loads of after-sun. During the meal all sorts of innuendos were flying and Biddy was getting worried, so organised himself accordingly. After we dispensed with the after-sun we went to sleep spooning and about 4.00am the laxative he put in my Tribute kicked in and for the rest of the night he had the bed to himself.
We all got up about 8.00am and spent the next half hour plastering ourselves with sun cream, then pulled back the curtains to see the fine weather had departed and it was pouring. Full wet weather gear and out past Penlee where the lifeboat sent out to the Union Castle was lost and through Newlyn, Penzance and Marazion in the wind and rain. Luckily the wind was behind us so not too bad and we were soon at the latter in a Café having coffee and cake chatting to a couple off to St Michaels Mount and were extolling the virtues of The Cotswold Way.
When we came out the rain has eased and we were soon back on the path proper and enjoying the scenery. The coats were soon off, a snack from Del's rucksack and the afternoon just got better. the coast is a lot softer here but t,he flora just as good and loads of hIdden sandy bays and rock pools. A crab sandwich at Praa Sands in The Beachcomber Café and we thought only 3 miles to the Harbour Inn in Porthleven. This turned out to be 5 so the first pint was not sunk till 5.45pm but was well worth it as although 29103 steps a great afternoon. Off to the to the restaurant across the road now to look up the flowers Biddy has photographed in my new colour coded book, we certainly now how to live it up. Topping is a big double bed to myself (run out of after sun anyway) and a bath.

 

DAY 4  -  Tuesday 15th May 2012

 

Porthleven to The Lizard

Day 4 and as normal the legs are heavy and don't want to work. Sue took us across the road to a good restaurant where all 7 of us were well fed. Biddy decided to do the wine and it soon came apparent why he sent us a rake of invoices before we came away. The walk back round the harbour was a bit chilly but the Tribute was good upon our return and if Brian is reading this they have Prussers behind the bar. If you are in this neck of the woods, Porthleven, we can highly recommend the Harbour Inn, rooms are great, beds real comfy and a great breakfast.
The weather looked good from the room, however once outside the next layer of clothing soon went on as although cloud and blue skies the wind was blowing 5 to 6 and was bitter. The good news was it was behind us. This has had some benefits as Notty's face is now brighter than a tomato and looks totally wrong on his shoulders, my white socks are getting better which seems to please the others and worse we could be walking the other way where everybody was dressed as if we were in Scotland in winter (albeit with nicer people).
On the downside I had to tape my ears back as two or three times I actually took off. The first jaunt to Poldu went well and we arrived early with a windswept Sue and Debbie arrived as we finished our second jug of tea.
Just after Poldu is Mullion where soon after I had a nice chat with a Dutch couple. The ground was generally good however within 20 m I rocked hopped across a bog. Dell who has been trying to emulate my style over the last couple of days tried to follow and on the last final jump foot slipped and ended upon the deck much to the amusement of Me and Biddy and the Dutch couple who couldn't wait to tell Paul and Al.
From here we were on top of the cliffs about 70m up and although the wind was getting on our tits by now the walking was good on grassy slopes and Kynance was soon in view where a welcome break at the cafe was very welcome. Tea was pants but the cakes the best by far.
A quick couple of miles to finish and we were at the Lizard where the South African flowers are not quite out but the views as good as ever.
We are in The Top House Inn now with glowing faces (and legs) enjoying our fourth night of Tribute. Luvin it.

 

DAY 5  -  Wednesday 16th May 2012

 

The Lizard to St Keverne

Firstly my apologies, 21162 steps yesterday and I forgot to mention Brian who is walking the whole path on his own for his retirement clockwise. Last night was excellent and can recommend The Top House Inn in Lizard. The rooms are great and the food the best we have all had for ages. Also we had a celebrity in the bar as Nigel form The Fisherman's Apprentice came in for a beer and was pestered by the locals. It was My and Biddy's last night together so we had a lovely spoon in a three foot bed, our bags were on the other one. The other good thing was that in the square outside was pay a phone box, which I thought was great, so managed to have a chat with Chippy and Wifey.
Today we walked back down to Lizard Point to look for Choughs but to no avail. We did spot a couple of seals so better than nothing. We were soon on our way and again the flowers have to be seen to be believed. Round the lighthouse and Lloyds Signal Station past the Devils Frying Pan and into Cadgwith where Nigel comes from, all the fishing boats were out though as there was not a cloud in the sky and a gentle breeze to keep us at the right temp.
We met up with Sue at Kennek Beach where there was a banjo playing at the cafe we chose and we had to try and find what they did actually have on the menu. From there it was onto Coverack with just country in between. We spotted a couple of Peregrine Falcons hunting with a Crow trying to fight them off. We dropped down from the 107m cliffs which Al kept on getting too close to the edge to over some real rough terrain with girt big rocks poking through thick foliage which was pretty tricky and hard.
A cream tea at Coverack soon put that right and four miles round to St Keverne through the quarry past another seal, Del falling in the mud again (3rd time he has gone mud hunting) another Peregrine and up the road to home. We also performed a rescue as two 80+ year olds were struggling to get up from the beach through a gulley. As I came round the corner they were both stuck on the side so the rucksack was straight off and jumped down. Me and Del pulled the old man up then I jump down and pushed the old dear up to Del by her arse, which once she was up seemed to thoroughly enjoy. Notty reprimanded them not to go looking for Roman artefacts again and left them with a smile on their faces. Al is convinced we disturbed them nude sun bathing, lucky Gill.
The hotel is good and looking forward to a bit of fish. After 7 cafes have still not found one selling pasties. How weird is that. 20 miles to go, better cut down on the Timothy Taylor's.

 

DAY 6  -  Thursday 17th May 2012

 

St Keverne to Falmouth

Thursday, well last night was Pasty's Cornish wet the baby's head and we had 19 miles to do to get to Falmouth, so the Doom was more important than the blog. Couple of things from Wednesday at Coverack we stopped at the Beach Cafe of the Year 2012 watching Gannets diving into the sea and after 6 faithfully years the step counter has packed up. The night in St Keverne was interestingness, first time we have ended without the pub being open and the weirdest breakfast system you have ever seen which did not work. Also the locals were boycotting the pub as there were northerners running it. However the weather had turned and by the time we had left it was full wet weather gear and a mile back down to the path. It was a mixture of lanes and fields to start with and a bit up and down so within 45 mins the gear was off and although wet and muddy underfoot the mission was to get to Gillan Creek ASAP so we could wade across. On arrival the stepping stones were visible so the crossing was simple although Al impressed us with the flip flops and still fell in cutting his toe and Del likewise. The snack bars remained dry and after a foot dry it was onto the Helford River Crossing but not before Del had done a quick double fall on the mud covered roots.
His mission to provide us with constant enjoyment continued when he sat on the leeward side of the open ferry and got soaked in the force 7 that had blown up during the morning. The cafe in Helford was good with the best crab sandwiches so far and a couple of lovely ladies running it. Good cup of tea at Maenporth watching the surfers in the gale and then watching the poor Pilot having to get on a ship to take it in. We made real good time and 3 of us were soon walking round the esplanade on the Path whilst two others short cut across the town, but Al and Notty shall remain nameless.
A couple of pints in the Cutty Sark (not to be repeated) and back for a quick shower and off to the Chain Locker for a quick bite to eat and upstairs for Sam's Cornish head wetting. Shame the food took two hours but a great night upstairs and great to catch up with Dick and Gloria.
Bit of a late night but easy morning tomorrow. Great mini pasties at the do, which we nicked for today.

 

DAY 7  -  Friday 18th May 2012

 

Falmouth to Portloe

I believe this is on the website, however it was just to remind the five of us of events as senile dementia is prevalent.
A good breakfast with the boys happy with themselves having negotiated the landing for the piss run during the night.
Our last day starting off with two ferries, one across from Falmouth to St Mawes and one from there to Place. On the second ferry we could not untie as there was a lot of ballast on the starboard side. The double chinned driver who got a bit upset when I said all the lightweights were on the port side but everyone else thought it was funny. Del would have had him anyway if he did throw me off. Half past eleven before we got walking however one of the best days in store, we were soon rounding St Anthony with fantastic views over the Carrick Sounds (entrance to The Fal). It was just round the headland where we had the spot of the week – a pair of Hobby's nesting, you had to be really observant to have claimed this spot of top prize but apparently that's gloating. Great countryside, Al falling over lacing his boots, a Linnet, 15 points in Notty's I-Spy book of birds, Notty falling over up hill, a few steep climbs, Al running amok amongst the first sheep herds we have encountered shouting Gill, Gill!  Notty falling behind talking to a few more rare breeds, a sweat going up to Nares Head and finally a view of Portloe on the approach made for a great day. Celebrations with a few Tribute's red/brown faces, arms and legs, white socks and a smile on our faces makes for a good end. At Portcatho in the tea rooms there is already talk of next year. Thanks to Sue Debbie and Judy for driving and to Al, Biddy, Notty and Del for their company, some fantastic laughs and memories.
Watch out for Del and Biddy's flora calendar and an update from room 4 where Gill has booked the three boys into a double bed and single bed room.