The North Coast of Cornwall is fully exposed to the prevailing weather and the North Atlantic swells. It does have amazing coastal scenery with innumerable coves, inlets, caves, waterfalls, reefs, offshore islands and stacks. From the sea kayakers perspective the coast is wild and committing. The climate is warm but strong winds from the south west and the Atlantic swell are a constant concern.
The trip from Boscastle to Daymer Bay on the Camel Estuary is exceptionally scenic. The sea was calm and we knew that we could get into Port Isaac for a break en route.
Boscastle harbour is a drowned river gorge.
Boscastle used to be a busy port handling the ores mined hereabouts. Boscastle was flooded in 2004 but there are few signs of that now.
There are many caves to explore.
At this time of year after rainfall there is plenty of fresh water falling down the cliffs making spectacular waterfalls.
There are many spectacular rock formations – this is Ladies Window.
Tintagel Head with the vast King Arthur Castle Hotel on the top of the cliff is a notable landmark.
The headland has seen a millennia of occupation and the remnants of the past can be clearly seen. Tintagel has historical importance and pottery from the sixth century has been found here. However, many visitors today are interested in the Arthurian associations. It’s always busy and very nice to view it from the sea without becoming embroiled too closely in the tourism.
We paddled on down the coast passing between Gull Rock and Trebarwith Strand.
Trebarwith was a busy quarry port before the tourists came. Another 8km of cliffs to paddle along before reaching Port Isaac.
Port Isaac is a fishing village. The drama Doc Martin is filmed here. In Tudor times it was a pilchard fishing port. The inshore lifeboat is housed inside the old fish cellars.
Port Isaac was busy with visitors. We had a welcome break from the kayaks and feasted on pasties, ice cream and tea.
We still had a long way to go so we paddled straight across Port Quin Bay. On a more leisurely paddle there is plenty to explore along the coast here. However we made a beeline for The Mouls which is an offshore island at The Rumps headland. There were plenty of Auks (Puffins live here) at the Mouls and the tide was running quite hard which made for an interesting few minutes as we rounded the island and headed for the Rumps.
Rumps point is the site of Cornwall’s finest Iron Age cliff castle and from the water we could clearly see ramparts and ditches constructed to keep out unwelcome boarders.
We continued under massive, impressive cliffs to Pentire Point where once again we encountered some tidal movement but with so little swell this was not a problem and we headed into Padstow Bay for the last few kilometres before reaching our get out at Daymer Bay.
28km in perfect paddling conditions.