Tuesday, 17 July 2012

Walk 109

Pwll Deri to Fishguard 9 miles

A 5.45am start today as I have a train to catch home.  The weather was damp and drizzly and my feet were wet within the first 1/2 mile, and squelching within a mile! I only took one pic today and that was of Strumble Head, the rest of the journey was very forgetful.

 This is where I have a mini rant.....the Pembrokshire Coast Path is the worst long distance path I have walked upon so far, not because of the views and scenery I hasten to add, but due to the badly maintained paths. At one point on my last day I was faced with a "wall" of undergrowth 5 foot high which I would of being better off with a machete rather than an OS map!! I know we've had a lot of rain but some of these paths haven't being touched for years.  GET YOUR ACT TOGETHER!! a man and a strimmer twice a year would suffice.

Walk 108

White Sands Bay to Pwll Deri 22miles


A grey misty morning to start the day, and also to end the day as well!!  A couple of small climbs and then the rock climbing started! I hadn't had this problem since Cornwall with large slippy boulders to climb up and over for many a mile,  this made progress slow going. As the path regained its level I came across a field with Llamas in so I had to take a pic! I have seen plenty of other wildlife on my travels but very few Llamas! A few more miles along the path and I came upon Porthgain a very nice little village nestling in yet another valley. The up and down valleys were coming thick and fast and so was the fog! The final climb of the day was an absolute beast, with the path bearly marked and I imagined great views from the top....if only I could see them!  Finally I made it to Pwll Deri YHA and I must say its got to be one of the most picturesque in there portfolio. 

Walk 107

Roch to Whitesands Bay ( including a short detour to St Davids) 17miles

A fantastic day greeted me today on this relatively short walk, the first port of call was Newgale with its long shingle beach which leads to a nice uphill 1/2mile climb, today was going to be fairly hard going as there were a number of up and down valleys to negotiate.After the fifth of the up and downs I reached Solva and this village is just stunning I thought I'd taken a wrong turn and ended up in Cornwall!!! 3 miles after Slova I decided to take a 2 mile round trip inland detour to St Davids which is the smallest city in the UK.  St David's is just lovely with its cobbled streets and little cathedral, it was well worth the visit, there was also a pilgrimage though the streets of St Davids cumulating in art and performances from the local children.

Once back on the coast path I made my way to St Justinians where you catch the ferry to Ramsey Island which is another popular birdwatching and wildlife sanctuary. 2 more miles and I'd made it to Whiesands with a very burnt neck but happy that the rain had finally abated. The 2 pics are of Solva and Whitesands Bay.

Walk 106

Dale to Roch 27miles

Today is going to be a long day, not only mileage but the fact rain is forecast for midday which means it arrives when I will still have 5 hours of walking to go!:(   The path from Dale climbs steeply out of the village through a dense wooded area, the path is extremely slippy and I have to keep grabbing hold of trees to stop myself from falling!  The path soon opens up to a flat grassy field and I'm on my way to St Ann's head which is at the mouth of Milford Haven and has not one but two lighthouses! there is only one in use now but if you fancy living in a remote location the cottages are up for sale at a bargain 900K! http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2158058/Britains-isolated-street-cottages-boasting-best-sea-views-country-sale--1m.html
Once at St Ann's head the island of Skomer came into view, this is a very popular place for the bird watching fraternity and once I arrived at St Martins Bay (which is where you catch a ferry to Skomer) I could see they were going to have a busy day ferrying passengers. The rain started bang on time just after St Martins Bay, so I plodded on through firstly the drizzle and then the heavy stuff arrived an hour later, its a real shame because as I made my way down towards Little Haven and Broad Haven I could only imagine how picturesque these villages must look when its sunny.  Just after Broadhaven I made a decision to finish the rest of the days walk on the roads to Roch as I felt with the already saturated ground, the persistent rain and now the fog moving in!!! I didn't want to slip off the edge of a cliff having not being able to see where I was going!!  The only pic of the day is of the lighthouse at St Ann's head.

Walk 105

Milford to Dale 10miles

I'm back in Wales again for another 5day walk preceded by a 6.5 hr train journey! The train journey is one of my favourites so the time goes quickly before I have to disembark in Milford Haven.  I have to get a move on today as I have 2 stepping stone river crossings to make before the tide rises and covers the path, this saves me 2 very lengthy detours.  The first part of the walk takes me through the streets of Milford and the town is very ordinary with the main business being oil refineries. The Pembrokeshire coast path eventually winds its way to Gelliswick which is a nice quite bay but the oil refineries are always shadowing the coast in these parts. Just after Gelliswick the path starts to hug the coast and becomes a lot more rural with tall grass, nettles and the inevitable mud, I say inevitable but as its 5th July this shouldn't be the case......and then there was summer 2012!!!!.  I wound my way along Milford sound and fortunately the sun is shining, the first river crossing is at Sandy Haven and the tide is nowhere to be seen! there used to be a ferry here but that is long gone, the stepping stones are caked in thick moss so its small baby steps and very slowly does it!!!  I have another 4 miles to get to Musselwick for the next river crossing so I really start to get a move on, there isn't much to marvel at in this part of the walk so I'm happy with my head down and getting to the crossing point ASAP.  Once again I make good time and these stepping stones are a lot easier. The last mile is along a busy country road but you are rewarded with the lovely village of Dale at the end. The pic was taken just before Musselwick looking towards Dale.