Sunday, 14 July 2013

Lands End, and that's THE end, for now...

On Saturday morning, July 13th, the Cornish coast was temporarily left behind for the last 18 miles of the big plod. Hayle to Lands End was either a two day walk along the magnificent South West Coast Path, or one simple and easy plod along the A30. My fault; another planning 'cock up', whereby I had again opted for a road route when planning the whole thing. Many lessons I have learnt on this walk, one of those being that I am not a road and flat farmland walker. I am, by nature, a fell walker. I love to climb the fells and hills, and the cliffs of The South West Coast fit nicely into that same category. When I plan my return plod for 2015, I will start at Lands End and follow the coastal path to it's Northern conclusion at Watchet in Somerset. That is for later, though, for now the chosen end to this marathon plod for 4 charities was along the A30 in searing heat.

It was pretty easy, and with no rush called for I plodded to the finish in just over 6 hours - a good hour behind Liz who had left early to try and beat the heat of the afternoon. The weather doesn't particularly bother me, whether hot or cold wet or dry, and Lands End was reached by 4.30 pm, via Penzance.

Penzance is steeped in history, and tales of smuggling and piracy have been passed down the generations. Never having visited Penzance, it was a little sad to just walk straight through the town in a matter of minutes, but hey ho, the objective was a further 11 miles away.

Lands End really has been turned into a money-making gimmick, with shops and vastly over-priced goods in abundance. Fast food outlets and many other ways of getting visitors to part with their money for little return surround you. Not for me, never was.
To get a close-up picture right in front of the sign at Lands End will cost upwards of a tenner, and is obviously a big money spinner. Again, not for me. I know where the coastline is, I did my own - at a distance.
After some joint pictures with fellow walker Liz, and a cup of tea with her daughter Victoria and boyfriend Dave, we adjourned to our digs at Sennen (2 miles short of Lands End) to clean up before dinner at the last (or first) pub in England.
A special treat as it was Saturday night - a cracking good band from The Lizard, 'Stone Hearted Mama', played a rocking good set of classic covers until late. With Doombar on tap, a cracking night!
Liz departed early today, I have another day here to soak up the sun, swim in the sea, and check out a few things that should help when I plan my return

The morning 'heat fog' over the sea and cove at Sennen was quite eerie, and hung around until after midday, blanketing everything with a hot and humid presence. Apparently these summer 'fogs' often linger for a few days, but thankfully this one lost the battle with the sun!

Once the fog had just about gone, the beach and surrounding cliffs could clearly be seen again, and a swim in the beautifully calm and warm atlantic ocean was a must for me. Two hours in the sea, with the odd break for a sit on the rocks, then I checked out the coastal path between Sennen and Lands End. A very popular stretch, obviously, the path is wide and easily walked, again with stunning views all around.
And now, nearly at the end of my 'plod blog', I would like to congratulate Elizabeth on completing the walk - well done Liz.
Also I must thank my good friend The Windsor Geek. He created this blog, and made it very 'user friendly' so that even old milko could update things easily and with little fuss.
Thank you Mr Geek, I really am very grateful Sir!
The author at Lands End, sporting the shirt supplied by The Windsor Geek, a splendidly expert computer person.
Alec Hawkes  14.07.13
Plod now plodded.
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Keith said...

Al, I think you're a star for doing what you've done. It's a pretty awesome achievement really.

Rachel Lee said...

You are utterly amazing for all you've put yourself through :) Glad you're back and so very well done. Time for a beer xxx

alec hawkes said...

thank you both very much! xx