Day 147 (6.9.17): Kynance Cove and Iron Age Cornwall

Rain was threatening again when we got up this morning.  The forecast the previous day had been iffy, too, so we decided to ignore the dark clouds and hope for the best.  With our eyes once again on the tides, we set off towards the hidden beaches of Kynance Cove.

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We got to car park at the top of the cliffs and started down the path to cove, dodging the cows that were grazing on the hillsides.  The skies had cleared, and the beaches beckoned.

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Though it was still cool, the girls and I quickly changed into our bathing suits, and started to explore the rocky cliffs.

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From our day at the Bedruthan Steps, we knew that sea cliffs like these might hold caves.  After just a few minutes of searching, success!

IMG_2410After exploring this cave, we continued further along the cliffs to see if there were more, soon finding another sand-filled sea cave.

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Our appetites whetted and feet wet, we raced down the beach to find more caves.  Spying a crack in the rock, the girls pressed further inside.

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In the back of this cave we could see a small light, indicating that there was another cave nearby.  We went back outside, scrambled over the rocks, and found another sea cave.

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The beach petered out after this cave, so the girls and I climbed the rocks, watching the waves crash below us.

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Julie meanwhile walked around the small beach.

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We climbed down from the rocks to explore some tidal pools we had passed in our haste to search for caves.

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Along the way, we found more rocks to climb, and found a place that we could look at some rocks locally known as “The Bellows.”  A hidden underwater cave ends in a small opening, so that when the tide is right incoming waves force air quickly out through the water, spraying air and water into the air making a noise like bellows and spraying a fine mist that on a sunny day creates a rainbow.

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We climbed back down off the rocks, and the girls found a large tidal pool to swim in.

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It was, by any reasonable standards, too cold to swim.  But when it comes to swimming, Cassie and Lydie have never been reasonable.  They’ve swum in the North Atlantic, the North Sea, and the Irish Sea.  The Cornish Coast looked perfect to them.

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The waves were impressive, making the girls laugh, Julie worry, and me fervently hope that I wouldn’t have to go into the cold water to fish out one of the girls.

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The waves smashed into the girls, who in their usual fashion sputtered, laughed, regained their footing, and ran back for more.

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Eventually, the girls started getting cold, so they returned to their tidal pool to warm up a bit.

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The tide was coming in, and we were getting hungry.  It was time to move on.  While we were drying off and putting on fresh clothes, we saw a seal frolicking in the same waves where the kids had been just a few minutes earlier.  We climbed up onto a large rock to see if we could see more seals, but by the time we reached the top, the seal had moved on.

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We climbed back up to the car, and set off in search of food on our way to our next destination:  the ancient remains of the village of Chysauster.  Along the way, we saw wild foxglove blooming in fields and along the tiny roads that cut across the countryside. IMG_2569

By the time we reached Chysauster, wet clouds had blown in and the temperature had dropped.

img_4098The village dates back to about 100 BC, and includes ten large houses, each with small buildings arranged around a small courtyard.  The entrances to the courtyards were placed on the leeward side of each house, testifying to the harsh environment in which the villagers lived.

After exploring the village, we returned to Mousehole and cleaned up.  For dinner, we went to a small seafood restaurant in Newlyn, a small coastal village between Mousehole and Penzance.  The girls devoured their mussels, and Julie and I enjoyed calimari and fresh fish.

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We drove back to Mousehole through the rain, tired and satisfied.

-Will

 

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