It is a very misty moisty morning as I head out of Cadgwith up to the next village to catch a bus back to Lizard Point. As unluck would have it the bus timetable is not up to date and the bus I want only goes to within 2 miles of Lizard. This is what we used to call “a bit of a bummer” but I have no choice. I reluctantly leave the bus, resigned to a hike along a very busy road. As I pass a side road, a small white van appears and on an impulse I stick out my thumb. Amazingly, the van stops and a young man climbs out, his girlfriend is at the wheel. The back of their van is crammed with gardening paraphernalia and a dog in a cage. Despite the inconvenience a space is made for me to squeeze into the back and they then take me all the way to Lizard. Such generosity! Thank you Rachel, Lee and Darcy the dog, aka Devon Gardeners.
From Lizard I follow a footpath through fields and woods which eventually brings me back to the coast path – there are stepping stones for muddy bits.
The mist lies heavy and I walk in eerie silence, unable to see the sea beneath the cliffs or further than about 50 yards in front of me.
After a while I see small groups of people coming in from my right and I realise that I am getting close to Kynance Cove which is accessible via a footpath from a minor road. The ground drops away down to the cove – there is a footpath and a warning.
The cove itself is stunning even in the poor light. From the white sand two or three enormous slabs of serpentine rock rise out of the mist, their gnarled, furrowed surfaces glistening like the skin of pre-historic reptiles.
Despite the weather there are quite a few people about and the cafe is open – I buy a sandwich to take with me as I’m pretty sure there are not going to be many watering holes between here and Mullion. The cafe is owned by the National Trust and I find out later that the roof is made of solar tiles which, among other things, generate enough electricity to make nearly 46.000 cups of tea a year. Opposite the cafe and surrounded by safety fences, is a house which must have seen better days – it now looks due for demolition.
I climb the steep hill back to the coast path which is briefly nowhere to be seen but I can just about make out a couple walking ahead of me so I follow them up onto a wide stretch of scrubby heathland covered with thrift. At one point I can see they have lost the path so I fish out my trusty iPhone and use my electronic OS map to get us closer to the edge of the cliff where the path becomes apparent.
Over to the left I can hear the sea but only occasionally see it, it’s all very Wuthering Heights – needless to say I do not experience a close encounter with my very own Heathcliff.
Occasionally, the mist lifts for a few moments, revealing the dramatic sweep of the cliffs plunging steeply down to the sea – it is truly breathtaking.
And gradually the mist lifts, I can see further and others can see me…………………………..
…………….and the sky turns blue for a while……………………………………………………….
I have now been walking for some hours without a break but haven’t really found anywhere suitable to eat lunch – and everytime I do, someone else is sitting there. Trying to ignore the hunger pains I decide to wait until I reach Mullion Cove which can’t be that far away. Mullion Island is off to my left and soon the village and its grand hotel come into view.
The path down into the cove overlooks the harbour wall which is still not the right place for lunch.
Eventually I spy a footpath leading up to the hotel with a bench halfway up. Wrenching off my rucksack I tear into my soggy cheese and tomato sandwich which tastes better than anything I’ve tasted for a long time. In my feeding frenzy I only notice the plaque when I stand up – it makes me a little sad although I like the use of “taken”.
I now have to make my way to my accommodation for the night which is a mile inland in the village of Mullion. I decide to follow the coast path up to Polurrian Cove and then turn off right to walk into the village. Some of the gardens I pass on the way are very pretty, plants and flowers creeping out from under fences.
It has been a wonderful walk today – one of the best.
Distance: 11 miles