Day 11 – Plymouth to St Mawes, finally the sun shines on me all day!

Tuesday 6th March

I woke up early, had a quick breakfast and Bella (the lady who owns the BnB) helped me down to the Polruan – Fowey ferry with all my bags.

I was worried about lifting everything onto the little boat but everyone helped, including the few early school children that make this daily crossing. The view was almost magical with a light mist blanketing the buildings.

Stunning views across the bay first thing in the morning

Low season for tourism means my trike will fit on the boat!

Then the first hill of the day, 2km long and pretty steep, having not warmed up I span up it slowly. When I approached the top I was over taken by a runner, I laughed as I had said the day before that I am sure it’s possible to run up Cornwall’s steep hills quicker than I can cycle! I had a quick chat with the lady whom I now know as Julie as she has very kindly sponsored me and we have connected on Facebook. I keep seeing the sponsorship and support messages from everyone and it really is keeping me going! Thank You!

I arrived at my first stop of the morning, Charlestown Primary School. I was to give a talk to years 4, 5 and 6 about myself, my trip and why I am doing it. The year 5 teacher who invited me to the school also has an unseen medical condition (ulcerative colitis) and enjoys cycling, so was keen for the children to understand that not everything can been seen from the outside. They were very interested and asked me lots of questions, we had a few photographs and I packed up and got on my way.

Great to speak at Charleston Primary School and engage with the children 🙂

I was met in the school playground by Doug who cycles with St Austell cycling club, he told me he would cycle with me a little way, but was going to adapt my route a little to one of their known club runs! (This ended up being the whole way!) It was great cycling in the sunshine and having someone to chat with. I kept apologising that I am so slow laden with 15kg worth of kit on top of an already heavy bike and cycling in a recumbent position, but everyone in Cornwall has pretty low gearing on their bikes and he was very happy to cycle along at my speed!

Doug’s route to avoid the big hills, still included lots of very big steep hills! The views from the top were beautiful. I managed to cycle up all of them and saw my Garmin show gradients of over 20 percent (it also frequently auto-paused because I was going too slowly at times!). One hill proved particularly troublesome because there was lots of gravel, I had to zig-zag up, it was too steep to sit forward and push the front wheels with my hands to help (a technique I learnt a few weeks ago.) There was a car behind me and two cars at the top, (one waiting patiently and the other told me I shouldn’t be on the road because I am dangerous – I think I held her up for 2 minutes!

Doug’s “less hilly than the really hilly” route 

After a few more climbs we descended into St Mawes, a pretty town on the Roseland Pennsisular across the river to Falmouth. Doug and I had a cup of tea and a bite to eat in their cycling clubs favourite haunt in the town. We then climbed the road a little the other side as Doug wanted me to see the castle and the view from the top. We took a couple of photos and said our goodbyes. Having company has made such difference today after my day yesterday and I really enjoyed cycling with and getting to know Doug! I would love to come back here and cycle these roads with Danny on the tandem, maybe with some WCC members to do a joint ride with their club.

Dough is a natural on the climbs…

…but he didn’t mind waiting for my at the top!

I checked into the Idle Rocks Hotel in St Mawes – the head chef Guy had messaged me after hearing about my challenge and had invited me to stay at the hotel. They helped me with my bike and luggage and I was shown to my room. A very thought-out spacious but cosy room, with the most amazing sea view. When I walked into the bathroom and saw a freestanding bath in-front of a window I couldn’t be happier! My legs have started to stiffen up and tire after many days cycling on the trot and I need to start stretching and looking after them better.

Idle Rocks Hotel – I am so lucky to have been able to stay in such an amazing place!

Dinner was perfect, Guy the head-chef provided me with a simple meal (my allergies weren’t a problem) of with Hake which was exquisite along with a banana cheese cake for pudding, I think someone must have told him what my favourite foods are! My description hasn’t done the presentation and flavour of the food justice, this really was something special. Danny and I have eaten in a hand full of Michelin star restaurants and my experience here was up there with all of them! The ambience was perfect, I replied to a few messages but spent the evening enjoying my experience in the hotel 🙂

The staff have been extremely welcoming, professional, friendly and interested in my trip, one of the staff Andrew used to live on the Isle of Skye and has extended family in North Scotland, so we have kept in touch for the possibility of accommodation!

Today really has been great, the weather, the scenery, the company and the hotel couldn’t have been more perfect.

A final shot of a stunning stretch of coastline 🙂

Tomorrow I will visit ICE trikes first thing who will look over my trike, that I have abused for the past 2 weeks! Then I will cycle to Lizard with Deb, another member of St Austell cycling club – unfortunately the weather doesn’t look quite as bright as today!  Hopefully my tired legs can get me up some more of the Cornish climbs!

3 Replies to “Day 11 – Plymouth to St Mawes, finally the sun shines on me all day!”

  1. I had a great day out on the bike, I love the ‘Doug’s “less hilly than the really hilly” route ‘ caption!! Have a great ride today!

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