Club Trip to St. Ives, Cornwall, 28th September to 1st October 2019
At the end of September 17 walkers converged on St Ives in Cornwall for a four-day visit with Reading Rambling Club – just as the remnants of a hurricane crossed the Atlantic to land on the UK.
So if the club’s earlier trip in the year to Norfolk was all blue skies and sunshine, this event turned out to be Wet Wet Wet and the area was just a Blur as low clouds and rain hampered visibility.
But if the weather wasn’t playing ball at least the accommodation partly made up for it. The Holiday Fellowship’s Chy Morvah (Cornish for House by the Sea) was comfortable and the food was plentiful and good. And there was a much-needed drying room!
Arrival day was September 28 and just after lunch nine of the party set out on a five-mile walk that was immediately hit by rain. Which was a pity as the focal point – Knill’s monument high on Worvas Hill – allegedly had brilliant views over St Ives bay. However, these were totally obscured by the conditions. The monument itself is a 50ft granite obelisk built in 1782 and designed by John Wood the Younger, whose work included the Royal Crescent in Bath.
Sunday dawned as the weather relented a bit so it was in the cars for a short trip up the coast to Zennor followed by a hike along the coastline. And what a hike! At places the agility of a mountain goat would come in handy as the track became very rocky and undulating. Slip-ups saw a few bruises collected! All the while strong winds and scattered showers ripped in from the sea as waves hammered onto the rocks below. A true experience for the senses. After about three miles of this exertion more than half the group decided to take a shorter cut back to Zennor while six ploughed on along the coast (they did say it got easier from that point) and completed a 9+ mile journey. At the end the party was split between tea and cake in a café or a reviver in the popular Tinners Arms!
Monday saw the party head for Cornwall’s south coast by bus, and after disembarking a short walk took them to Marazion and St Michael’s Mount. Here, as the weather started to deteriorate, the group began splitting up with three crossing the now-visible causeway to view the Mount. The rest ploughed on through Marazion marsh and on to Ludgvan (pronounced as in fudge), where two broke off to go to Penzance. That left eight to complete the south to north route as it got wetter and wetter, and they eventually covered more than 11 miles to reach the hotel.
For Tuesday there was a suggestion of a walk featuring Tintagel but, because of the weather, everyone finally decided to either continue their West Country break elsewhere or depart for Berkshire.
They left thanking trip organiser Hilary Dewey for her usual impeccable efforts. If only she had some control of the weather….
Written by Mike Conway