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" 2. Rhossili and Gower - The Coastguard Walk"
Date & start time: Monday 2nd October 2017. ( Map ref SS 417 881).
Location of Start : Sunset View Cottage, Rhossili, Gower, South Wales, UK.
Stayed at : Sunset View Cottage (self-catering holiday house).
Places visited : Rhossili and down to the Coastguard Lookout.
Walk details : A local walk for the dogs and ourselves, an hour or so along the headland.
With : Ann and our dogs, Harry and Dylan.
Weather : Brighter today, overcast but clearing towards evening.
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After arriving and settling in over the weekend we have chance to explore a little.
I say explore but we know the area really well of course so with Harry needing shorter walks we opt for a stroll out to the Coastguard Hut.
The weather is improving all the time, gone is the rain and low cloud, but it is still rather windy.
The view from the patio window is of clearer weather and brighter skies.
Long distance visibility is still poor but there's a good chance the waterproofs will not even get damp today.
We'll still wear them though as there's still a strong, cool breeze blowing off the sea.
Sunset View . . . with the dogs ready and waiting for a walk by the look of it.
The Gower Coast Path passes through the village.
So as to avoid the road (and the passing cars and buses) the path diverts around the back of the Churchyard.
There's a spectacular orange pyracantha growing against the wall part way along.
A colourful scene as we enter the village and pass a local cafe.
On the opposite side of the road is the alternative centre of refreshment . . . the Causeway Cafe.
Beyond is the end of Worms Head and seen between the two is the refurbished car park and an acorn leaf motif on the National Trust Shop.
The shop is located in the old Coastguard Cottages.
With advances in radio communications and modern radar the coastguard no longer need a direct, watching presence in the village.
They now have a larger regional centre on Tutt Head, further up the coast and nearer to Swansea, at Mumbles.
The walk is a delightful stroll along the headland . . . much to Harry's delight.
From the cliff top we get the classic view of Rhossili Bay, looking north along the three miles of golden sands.
On the next bluff the sheep have given way to people but I hope they don't get to close to the edge.
The grass is slippery and there's nothing to stop you sliding all the way down to the beach, hundreds of feet below.
From a respectable distance, plus the use of the larger lens, we can see the gulls close to the tide line below.
The strong wind is still blowing and adds drama to the seascape.
Looking the three miles across to Burry Holms, the other tidal island at the northern end of the bay.
Technically the iron base held a wooden pole that represented a ship's mast. ( It used to have side steps that I climbed as a child.)
The Coastguard used to use this "mast" to practice "Breaches Buoy" techniques used to rescue people from ships washed against the cliffs.
Walking on, we approach the end of the headland.
From here we get a better view of Worms Head and the causeway . . . and of the house known as "Kitchen Corner"
This building dates back to the 1920's (nearly 100 years ago now) and is also known as "The Old Boathouse".
We heard stories that it was associated with the local lifeboat service who may have kept a boat moored out here at one time.
It is now privately owned and has two simple rooms, okay If you like fishing and don't mind living that close to the edge !
Looking closely you can see a mooring post and steps down to the water.
At one time the inlet alongside was apparently a limestone quarry and boats used to load stone from the beach.
At the end of the headland is the old Coastguard Lookout.
It is now used by the men and women of the National Coastwatch Institute . . . a voluntary organisation keeping a visual watch along UK shores.
Did I say it was windy today . . . Ann and the dogs battle the elements, stronger now at the end of the headland.
Out to sea the waves are breaking over the inner Helwick sand banks.
Worms Head and the start of the path down to the rocky beach from near the Coastguard Hut.
Time for us to be heading back to the village.
There's a kite surfer out on the water, probably having a spectacular ride today.
On the Hillend part of the beach is another sportsman or woman on a kite buggy
This sport uses a parasail attached to a three-wheeled kart which has a steerable front wheel. It is also known as land yachting.
Due to the popularity of the beach in summer both these sports seem to be restricted to an autumn to spring season only here on Rhossili.
Back at our cottage later in the day, the wind seems to be blowing the weather front away to the east
leaving clear skies in its place . . . there's a chance of a fine sunset tonight perhaps.
- - - o o o - - -
We were not disappointed . . . it is about quarter to seven and the sun makes a dramatic appearance.
. . . shining out beneath the clouds and illuminating the layers from below.
A final sunset as our earthly western horizon rises to obscure the celestial being.
[ Stop for a moment and imagine the concept next time you have chance . . . it will alter your view of the world.]
Partly gone . . . the intensity of the colour now reflecting on the clouds above.
Sorry no birds or ship to be silhouetted in front of the dying embers . . . just the wisp of a distant cloud.
We thought that would be the last of the colour . . . but we were wrong.
Once the sun had finally set the colour tuned to a rich pink . . . which extended over the whole of the southern sky.
and gave us a magnificent sunset view . . . over Sunset View Cottage.
- - - o o o - - -
Technical note: Pictures taken with either Ann's Panasonic Lumix TZ60, or my Panasonic Lumix Gx8 Camera.
Resized in Photoshop, and built up on a Dreamweaver web builder.
This site best viewed with . . . a west facing window whilst cooking supper.
Previous walk - 1st October 2017 - 1. Rhossili - Sunset View
A previous time up here - 18th - 22nd April 2015 - Swansea Holiday 2015
Next walk - 3rd October 2017 - 3. Rhossili Downs and the Brit