SWCP Day 11. Polzeath to Mawgan Porth

Today’s distance walked – approx 31 kms (19 miles).
Ascent – approx 850m (2788ft).

As I was eating my breakfast this morning (a very sugary and delicious flapjack) a giant seagull kept me company… or should I say, kept an eye on me. As I was packing up, I left my backpack and a few bits and pieces at the site, and when I came back I saw him take off with the little plastic bag I keep my hand sanitizer in. I gave chase, but that only made him more determined, so I left him to it and packed the rest of my belongings. As I was leaving I searched the field next door, and found the stolen goods in the same condition in which they had been taken.

The thief
The thief…

I left at 7.45am and strolled the easy 3kms around the lovely headland and sand dunes into the estuary of the Camel River and to the slipway at Rock. As I walked up the water taxiwas just coming in, so I hopped on board for the 5 minute journey across to Padstow.
Padstow has been around for a very long time obviously, but it has been a really popular destination since chef Rick Stein made his TV shows locally.

Padstow harbour
Padstow harbour

I arrived at 8.45 am, but alas, because it was before 9am nothing was open (which I still find really odd!!) So I waited on the harbourside for the village to slowly come alive. Padstow was lovely. My wanderings included a visit to the Post office where I posted back some items that I haven’t/won’t use (bikini and water filter). I then went to The Cornish Bakery and bought a pain au raisin, a croissant, and a Cornish pasty (best of the trip so far – real steak, not mince).

Around the first headland
Around the first headland

I got back on the trail again. It was easy and very pleasant walking today. As I walked around the first beach at Harbour Cove the sun came out, so I fully sunscreened myself so as not to repeat yesterday’s mistake. Fifteen minutes later the clouds came over and it started to drizzle :-(. I rounded the first headland. From there it was gentle undulating hills and the odd sandy beach in between.

Harlyn Bay
Harlyn Bay

The first beach was Trevone Bay, then Harlyn Bay (where there were some epic waves coming in) then Mother Ivey’s Bay. Just before the Trevone Headland there was an amazing lifeboat station nestled in the rocks. I rounded the headland and walked past the lighthouse, protecting vessels from the shards of rock out to sea.

Lighthouse at Trevone Point
Lighthouse at Trevone Point

Around the headland it was sparsley populated, and when I came to the next bay it was a little eerie with the low cloud and drizzle. It would be amazing if the sun was out!

Today's lovely sandy bays amongst the rocks
Today’s lovely sandy bays amongst the rocks

The next bays were Constantine and Treyarnon and then it was into Porthcothan. I had intended to stay here tonight but the sun had come out again, so I enjoyed a magnificent hot chocolate with whipped cream at the Porthcothan cafe, then continued on.

My final stretch took me over some higher clifftops and up to Carnewas at Bedruthan. Here, the Bedruthan steps take visitors down to an incredible beach with large rock stacks. This is a really special place. I remembered it from a visit in my past, although I am trying to recall when that would have been. I didn’t go down to the beach as it would have been a huge struggle to get back up the steps with my pack.

Nearing the Bedruthan Steps
Nearing the Bedruthan Steps

From there it was a 45 minute still into Magwan Porth, a tiny little settlement in another beautiful sandy bay. I had called the Magic Cove camping and caravan park, and although they were full up, Lesley my host suggested I could go on another person’s site for just £5. Angela and Bob (who’s site it was) were lovely and I enjoyed chatting to them.
I had a fantastic shower, I ate my dinner and went to bed. I have the beginnings of a blister on the bottom of my right heel. I’m definitely going to try to have a lighter day tomorrow 😉

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