17/9/2014 – Penzance to Praa Sands (10.1mls)

We had both travelled down in our walking boots to save space, but Fiona’s new orthotic inserts had been quite painful so she changed to her walking shoes which were a bit wider and more flexible and so we set off with fingers crossed.

A misty start to the day with drizzle in the air but it was good to be up and running (although walking is all we can manage these days) as we made our way through Penzance town, stopping on the way at a deli to have a couple of sandwiches made up plus a home made pork pie treat (no Alistair or Lex to share it with!).

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The SWCP follows the railway line and sea wall most of the way to Marazion where there was the obligatory coffee stop at the Godolphin Arms. By now it was very windy and as we climbed the hill out of Marazion it started raining so it was on with the waterproofs.

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At Basore Point the wind was really gusty and we were privately amused to see a young man’s hat blow off – the girl he was with went down to retrieve it but we were then expecting the tiny fluffed up dog they had with them to follow the hat over the cliff! – we didn’t hang around to find out.

We stopped for lunch in a sheltered spot at Perranuthnoe …

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… and then afterwards the sun came out and it was back to T-shirts, and thankfully that turned out to be the only rain that we saw all week. All along this stretch of the coast were shags on rocks in “Graculus” pose, for those readers who remember “Noggin the Nog”. We then had our last view of Marazion and Penzance  …

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… before rounding Cudden Point where the wind was now gusting up to 60mph before reaching the shelter of the attractive Prussia Cove and Bessy’s Cove – the tracks up from the coves to the headland could clearly be seen where the smuggled brandy was landed in times past.

Arriving at Praa Sands about 16:00 we had a problem, not for the last time, of the fact that the B&B was about 1mile up from the coast so the thought was whether to hang about and eat before going to the B&B OR to go to the B&B and then walk down a mile to eat and walk back up afterwards – yet another mile! As it was so early we chose the latter but Fiona threw her teddies out of the pram on the way up and wearily announced that there was no way that she was going to walk back down and would be happy with just a glass of water and a biscuit. Marion Foy who ran the B&B bungalow called Mzima was very kind and chatty and said that she would run us back down to the coast to eat which was a relief. Marion and her husband used to run a farm at Prussia Cove, and indeed many of her relatives still do – her husband was away in Wells judging Britain in Bloom entries.

We ate at the Sandbar pub on the beach (seemingly the only place to eat in Praa Sands) and with food and a couple of pints of Doom Bar inside we staggered back up the hill, which Fiona had to admit was not as bad as the first time – it’s all down to expectations!

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