Weekly Photo Challenge: Escape: A Circular Walk from Kestle Barton via Frenchman’s Creek

This week, I decided to take up WordPress’ weekly ‘photo challenge’ with the special subject, ‘escape‘ – and see if anyone notices!  My escape is walking: it costs nothing (except travel costs, perhaps), the exercise is great for clearing the cobwebs, its ideal space for ‘dreaming’, and the dogs are especially grateful.  An ocular feast for mind, body and soul, in the company of special canine friends who are soon lost in their search for squirrels / rabbits, and don’t need to be engaged in conversation!  What better escape from the normal demands of everyday life can there be?

A Circular Walk from Kestle Barton

Of course it’s not just one photo but a sequence of photos that follow the linear route of my walk.  I decided not to doctor them to make them look pretty but to keep them in tact as a ‘working’ document.  The most challenging thing about this particular ‘challenge’ was picking just 20 or so photos from the 136 that I took!

The Helford River taken from OS Explorer 8
The Helford River taken from OS Explorer 8

In the 13 years since I have lived in Cornwall I have never visited the village of Helford on the Lizard Peninsula.  I wanted to see Jessica Cooper‘s paintings that are currently showing at Kestle Barton and in the process discovered there was a 2 mile circular walk from Kestle that takes in a couple of coves along the Helford River.

IMG_9439Taking my very battered Lizard OS and the map that Ryya kindly gave me from the gallery at Kestle Barton, going clockwise, I began my descent into Frenchman’s Creek. Pretty soon we are into the woods that run down the valley.

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The smell of wild garlic is pervasive after a sudden hail storm.

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One of the National Trust signs. Not too sure what the ‘permissive’ means?
on the footpath now
on the footpath ‘proper’ now
a first exit into the creek itself.  It all feels very secretive and obviously a perfect setting for smugglers to ply their trade.
a first exit into the creek itself. It all feels very secretive and obviously a perfect setting for smugglers to ply their trade.
catching tantalising glimpses of the creek along the path.
catching tantalizing glimpses of the creek along the path.
Now this is getting interesting for me.  The path is so worn the roots of the trees are showing.
now this is getting interesting for me. The path is so worn the roots of the trees are showing.
The sun has just come out and the creek is sparkling.
the sun has just come out and the creek is sparkling.
but my focus has gone back to the roots
but my focus has gone back to the roots
and the steps they have created
and the steps they have created
in contrast to the man-made version - less hazardous, granted - but not as interesting
in contrast to the man-made version – less hazardous, granted – but not as interesting
coming out of the woods and away from the creek
coming out of the woods now and leaving the creek behind us
looking back the river looks small and the sky suddenly seems looming
looking back, the river estuary appears small and far away but the sky suddenly seems looming – must press on
reassuring to know we are on the right path
reassuring to know we are on the right track
coming into Penarvon Cove
coming into Penarvon Cove
well, this place is a well kept secret!
well, this place is a well-kept secret!  A place that time forgot
rejoin the path at the top of the beach where the upturned boats are stored
rejoining the path at the top of the beach where the upturned boats are stored
this would have been a little 'pop over' if i was on a horse.  Tempted to hula but manage to crouch underneath
this fallen branch would have been a little ‘pop over’ if I was on a horse. Tempted to hula but manage to crouch underneath
a sneaky peek through the window of the Shipright's Arms in Helston village reveals the creek beyond
taking a sneaky peek through the window of the Shipwright’s Arms in Helford village reveals the creek beyond
this place is so chocolate box I am spoilt for choice so home in on the thatch that abounds
this place is so ‘chocolate box’ I am spoilt for choice so home in on the thatch that abounds
I need to cross this bridge turn right and I'm back in the woods
I need to cross this bridge, turn right and I’m back in the woods
another right turn in the path and I will have completed the circuit
another right turn in the path and I will have completed the circuit
but not before I have stopped to enjoy the reflections in the stream
but not before pausing to enjoy the reflections in the stream
and the bluebells!
and the bluebells!

Writing this up, I suddenly realise I didn’t pass a single person on my walk.  Not even a smuggler going about his business.  I decide to add this walk to my list of favourites.

To see more responses to this week’s photo challenge:

http://dailypost.wordpress.com/2013/05/17/photo-challenge-escape/