I recently began a walk along the Ceredigion Coastal Path which, as part of the Wales Coast Path, runs from Cardigan in the south over 60 miles to Ynyslas on the northern edge of the county. This is my diary of the event.
Sunday 26th May 2019 09:30
Location: Mariner’s Cafe, New Quay
I was off the campsite by 07:45 heading round the back of the beach and up onto the coast path. A steep climb to regain altitude and away I went. The rain mostly held off, nothing more than a light drizzle, I considered stripping off my waterproof trousers but before long they were soaked through by the long grass that grew over this section of the path. My feet were squelching in my no longer waterproof boots. All this time I was carrying my tent in my hands, swapping it from hand to other hand until finally with what looked like a vicious climb ahead I broke early for breakfast at 08:30 on a large rock just off the trail. I took this opportunity to empty most of my rucksack out and squeeze the tent back in. This I might regret later if it soaks my sleeping bag, but everything else is in my waterproof drybag, just my shirt and sleeping bag at risk. A small risk I say now.
Pushing on, the climb was vicious, steps cut into the hillside, but before long things eased out again. A mist rolled in slowly from the sea and the on-shore wind now buffeted my waterproof trousers inflating them like windsocks. An ominous sign suggested an alternative route ‘avoiding the cliff edge’ which I eagerly took. Passing a runner coming in the opposite direction I knew I must be nearing New Quay. It was still quite a trek through the clouds which had now rolled all around me, the view was limited to a few hundred yards in each direction now. The path eased into a relatively flat well prepared path that passed stone buildings on the left, lookouts and viewpoints and a stone circle in a field on the right, before the final descent into New Quay.
Stepping off the trail and landing in a built up area is an odd experience, after two days on the trail now I am starting to feel out of step and out of time with the realities of built up areas. I’m walking into New Quay with my world on my back after walking since early morning and yet the people I pass are walking out of their front doors and into cars to go wherever they go.
And so here I am now, two hours after leaving Cwm Tydu, contemplating the next six miles to Aberaeron which, at this rate of progress, should take another three hours. Hope the veggie health food shop is open on a Sunday and that I make it on time.
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