Day 35 – Falmouth to Carne

Well it’s rude not to have a little lie in when you’re allowed to be where you are isn’t it? Plus there was literally no point in rushing this morning. We were about ten miles from the Helford Ferry which can’t run at low tide so there’d be no way across between 12pm and 2.30pm. We didn’t want to rush to get there before midday so we just took our sweet arse time getting our shit together. We just had to be there before it stopped running for the day at 5pm.

Pretty much all of today’s photos were taken through a waterproof phone case.

We caught the bus back into town, resupplied at Tesco and had a disappointing bacon butty at The Pier cafe. That poor pig shouldn’t have had to die just to be shoved between two slices of cheap bread without any brown sauce.

Falmouth has a bit of a Coast Tag to negotiate before you finally get to leave. We weren’t even halfway around that when the rain started. Hang on, we weren’t expecting this until later. What the actual fuck, weather gods?! We kitted up in full waterproofs straight away and covered our packs with our nice, new backpack covers, congratulating ourselves for having the foresight to make such a sensible purchase. Well done us.

It absolutely pissed it down. We traisped around the remainder of Falmouth, past the beaches which would have been lovely if the weather were good, albeit a little bit too sandy for my tastes. My butt crack chaffed a bit just thinking about it.

We tried to take advantage of a break in the weather to shove some more food into our chops but I hadn’t even opened my crisps when the rain started up again. What a depressing lunch. We could see Falmouth over yonder when we sat down but it was quickly swallowed by a large, angry cloud. Fuck it. We trudged on. Trudge is such a good word in this situation isn’t it? Trudge. It summed it right up.

At one point we rounded a corner whilst walking around a headland and the wind belted into us, hammering us with the biggest drops of rain it could find. What a bastard. It was hideous, and relentless, until suddenly it just stopped. The sun made a cameo appearance… should we trust it or was it all a ruse?

The Helford Ferry is just a small boat. A few guys were milling about on the beach doing boaty stuff to boats and it turned out these were the guys who would get us across the river which was a quick and painless affair. We checked the weather forecast. It wasn’t meant to rain anymore so we risked stripping off the waterproofs and I was soaked! I expected a bit of water ingress down the front, there’s a fuck off big hole in my jacket where my head goes and the wind was hurling the rain into my face. But my back was wet too, too wet to just be sweat. Disappointing.

Upside-down acorn. You had one job…

Whatever. Can’t be helped now and I didn’t have time to sit around researching another jacket. Off we fucked around the coast some more. I checked my watch. How in fuck was it nearly 6pm already? The terrain itself wasn’t too awful to be fair. Enough lumps to keep it interesting but flat enough that we felt like we were making progress. I think what slowed us down was the sheer amount of thought that has to go into every footstep when the ground is made of soup and treachery.

Some of the path was so overgrown we questioned whether we were on the right track. We were, not that there was much waymarking to confirm this. Picking your way through nettles and brambles takes some of the momentum out of your stride too as you try and make it through the gauntlet with your legs intact.

Gillan Creek is one of those low tide/high tide choose your own adventure sections. If the tide is low enough, stepping stones magically appear and you can hop across them to Flushing, shaving a mile and a half off your day. The tide was in when we rocked up but we knew it would be as we needed a higher tide to catch the ferry. We knew we’d be walking around.

Put that in your eyeholes!

We had planned to get a little bit further than we did today but you know when you idly start looking for a camp spot, not really expecting to find much? We nipped up a little hill along a public footpath off the trail, just to have a look. There was a mowed field at the top so we followed the hedge line up out of curiosity, and fucking hell, was that a flat spot tucked away in the corner? Well now, it’d be rude to refuse such a gift from the trail gods so we fucked off any notions of completing the walk around today and pitched up.

Can we all just take a minute to appreciate this tree?

Fucking everything was wet. How?? We covered the damn bags, how is water still getting in? Tarrant’s dry bag housing her sleeping stuff, including her sleeping bag, failed too. Fuck it. As much as I hate plastic waste I hate everything being wet even more. Everything is going in plastic bags from now on. Next shop we stop at we’ll buy a tonne of bags off them and individually wrap everything we own. I really can’t think of another solution. Maybe I can make a jacket from Tesco bags? It’s called fashion, sweetie. Look it up.

Day: 35
Day on South West Coast Path: 25
Distance walked today: 14.79 miles
Total walked so far: 502.1 miles
Weather: Pissing rain from 11am until 3pm, then mostly overcast with the odd bit of sun.
Trigs bagged: 0
Trigs to date: 33
“Have you read ‘The Salt Path?'” (Running Total): 6

Jump to “Useful shit to know…”

Falmouth, Cornwall to Carne, Cornwall, England

Stayed at: Wild camp in the corner of a field

Useful shit to know…

  • Toilets are at the pier in Falmouth, Gyllyngvase Beach, Swanpool Beach, Maenporth Beach, and at the back of the car park in Helford.
  • If you want a water tap there’s one outside the loos at Gyllyngvase Beach. Otherwise you do cross some streams running into beaches.
  • The Helford Ferry can’t run at low tide but they put any disruptions including low tide times on their Facebook page. At the time of writing it was £6 each one way.

BUDGET for one person (based on two sharing)
Groceries: £12.08
Breakfast at The Pier, Falmouth: £7.60
Helford ferry: £6
Bus from Ben’s: £1.60
Grand Total: £27.28

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