Last day of the hike. It was a beautiful day and the temperature at 8:30 am was hot enough for me to feel it as soon as I stepped outside.
From the B&B, I zigzagged my way down the steep downhill and then walked the rest at a leisurely pace. I noticed a man working near a farm close to the road give me a funny look. As I got closer to him, it occurred to me, that to him it could look like I was talking to myself. I stopped and showed him the hand held recorder I was talking in to…he looked relieved and so did I….he was wondering if I needed help.
When I told him my destination, he mentioned that I was hiking in a remote and strenuous area and checked that I had the essentials. Listen to the locals…as this is also a very remote section of the PCP.
I was hoping I would get to experience a little bit of everything the PCP was know for on this final day of hiking. And that is what I got.
The start of the PCP is a steep climb that took me 136 steps and 10 min to get to the top of. I knew that they knew it was a steep climb as when you get to the top of the trail, right next to the gate is a bench. It was the most welcoming site of the entire coast path as I was preparing myself to sit and meditate right on the trail…so the bench was very nice.
Today’s hike is all about the up’s…in some variation of very steep. I accepted this and looked forward to each and everyone of them and this helped me stay positive and have fun…you have to make it fun otherwise it is not worth putting the effort.
I counted the number of steps it took to cover each up and down hill….some required more than 100 steps.
It was more of the same as yesterday….lots of vegetation covering the cliff edge trail. Also because it was hot today, the insects and flies were constantly around….not so much that they were bothersome but enough to constantly hear them.
This one uphill in the below photo taken from the top of the trail, has a special place in my memory. When I got to it, it looked like I could hike it without hiking poles. 3 steps in, I stopped and pulled out the poles as I was having to use my hands as well and the holds were not with in comfortable reach. It was a bit scary to be on this uphill and look back as you are on the side of the cliff here.
I had not used my hiking poles since day 2 when in the middle of the hike I had put them away and decided to treat what ever the trail has to offer as just regular hiking. Always safety first…here it was needed and out came the poles from the side pocket of my backpack.
The eroded section in the second photo is part of the trail.
Zigzag goes the trail.
The photo below was taken from the top of the trail that you see in the second photo. This is the story of the trail...one steep down a few steps of easy walking to give your legs a break and then a steep up climb.
The approach to Poppit Sands and St Dogmaels are on roads. There is one stretch of the road that was steep downhill but the rest of the road was ok.
I had stopped at the Poppit sands cafe to get a cold drink and after that decided that an ice cream was needed as well. Meanwhile the bus came and went. Instead of waiting for the next bus, I choose to walk and take the bus at the PCP marker to St Dogmaels.
This bit of walking is very unlike the PCP and it was boring and a waste of effort. The only views you get are glimpses through gaps in the trees….the shade these trees provided were welcoming in that heat.
I was happy to get to he PCP marker and gave plenty of thanks for the amazing time I had hiking the Pembrokeshire Coast Path.
There is a bus stop right next to the PCP marker and after a short wait, I was in St Dogmaels by 2 pm.
Wonderful day and a beautiful hike. It was a good decision to do this stretch of the PCP by itself today and not combine it with yesterday. I was the only one on the trail today and even though it was very warm, it was a beautiful day for hiking.
After couple of cups of tea and a bath, I explored the Abbey for a few minutes before heading to the restaurant for a very early dinner.
I had a goal for dinner….I absolutely had to have sticky toffee pudding to celebrate this trip. I love this pudding and had tasted several different recipes of it during my trips to Scotland, Ireland and UK. Now, I wanted to see how the Welsh made it.
I ordered a burger with all the works and the pudding. The fries went to a group at another table who were very happy to take it off my hands after seeing the size of the burger and the pudding. This recipe of the pudding was a first for me…it was served with warm custard and I have always only had it with ice cream.....it was every bit yummy.
I went to bed looking at the pitch black sky through the sky light above my bed and giving thanks every which way I could think of for the fantastic time I had hiking the Pembrokeshire Coast Path.