Slideshow of Milner Tower and Bradda Head, 4 miles Wednesday 29th August 2018

A stunning evening walk around Bradda Head, just 4 miles or so from my house. Do you need any other reason to live here?

There is quite climb up to Milner Tower which might not suit everyone, but there are other options to reach the top. If you take the car to West Bradda you can take a gentle sloping path with barely any ascent all the way!

Check out this video I took last night – I can’t upload it here, so have a look on my Facebook page:

Castletown to Langness Golf Links (No 19) and Fort Island – 4 miles (return 2.5 miles), Tuesday August 28, 2018

This short walk may be mostly on road and only a relatively short distance, but it is nonetheless spectacular in its simplicity, its peacefulness and breathtaking distant views in all directions, not forgetting the sea breeze that might sweep away any lingering cobweb at any moment. The bonus is the start and end point at Castletown, with its fine buildings, windy streets, castle and teahouses.

I was meeting some friends who had had an apartment in the Brambles at Port Erin when I was living there. They had moved to Anglesey and they were unexpectedly visiting the island for the Grand Prix, so we arranged to meet at No.19 for lunch.

For me, this meant I could get the bus to Castletown and then walk along the various beaches and shore lines with their different ambiences and if time walk the perimeter of the Langness peninsular. Today, this was unlikely as I had to get back to teach dancing but one can but dream…

I had thought of visiting the Castle first but decided I wanted to visit Fort Island and there wasn’t time for both, so I grabbed a takeaway coffee and walked round some of the quaint streets that comprise Castletown before visiting the loos on the bridge (worth knowing where they are, as there aren’t many that are open every day in Castletown). The loos in the Town Hall are closed at weekends.  I walked down past the Peggy Museum onto the coast road. I sat on some steps overlooking the bay and watched the tide whilst I drank my coffee, then resumed my journey stopping briefly at Hango Hill opposite the King William’s College and continuing on to Derbyhaven.

 

Photos: Derbyhaven Bay, Hango Hill and King William College

Here, rather than taking the road I continued on a very very short distance to the bay and walked along the beach. The tide was coming in and this is always the best time to see Derbyhaven. From there it is only a stone’s throw, say half a mile, around the Bay to the Golf Links and No 19, but I wanted to continue along the coast path as I still had an hour to spare.

And what a great hour I had, messing about on Fort Island. I haven’t been here for years. You walk across the causeway, which now prevents the island from being separated from the mainland.

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It is quite a nature reserve here, and the sea so very clear and clean, and having rocky outcrops as opposed to the rest of Deebyhaven bay which is sand and pebbles, I could scramble about the rocks and have fun.  There is the old chapel and of course, the Fort, but most of all the views are simply terrific and you can really open your eyes and let your long distance vision take over. My thoughts were that my grandchildren, Emily and Joe would enjoy it here, so I must bring them when they come over next.

 

And that was yesterday’s walk as I had to return via almost the same route, except in Castletown I walked through the Bowling Green, where there were bowlers and spectators alike enjoying the sunshine. There is an excellent cafe here, where you can sit inside or out, and appreciate not just the bowling but beautiful landscaped flowerbeds. I also wanted to walk along the Crofts with its stunning houses. I reached Castle Rushen school and waited patiently for the bus, which was running late due to the Grand Prix, and got home just in time to spend the next three hours teaching ballroom dancing.

Although I walked this route, you can take the car all the way to the Golf Links and even on to Fort Island, so this is suitable for a wide range of ages and abilities. You could start your walk where I ended and walk round a variety of paths on Langness, but I will save that for another day.

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Croit Y Caley / Port Erin Thursday 16 August 2018 – 7 miles

No activity on the blog doesn’t necessarily mean no activity. Since my last blog I have done a Pilates class, a very sweaty Aerobics class, taught several hours of ballroom dancing and completed my regular 10,000 steps per day. Nothing much of interest to blog about there though, hence the silence for a few days.

Today, I had hoped to get in a good walk, but of course in addition to normal work  it was RESULTS day for my Psychology students, so I wasn’t able to get out until 4pm and I had calls lined up for the evening with my online students. I wanted a walk that was basically flat where I could walk briskly and get my heart rate up as I hadn’t managed any intensity minutes yet this week. This walk did exactly that and had the added bonus for some of you that it would make an excellent running or jogging route, and you could expand or curtail it in any direction quite easily. You could turn it into a linear walk and get the bus or train back to Port Erin, or stop at the half way point at Croit Y Caley and do the same.

Those of you who follow me on Facebook will know I got absolutely drenched last night on the way home from teaching ballroom dancing. It is only a 5-7 mins walk and I was completely soaked through and there were streams of water on the roads. This afternoon the weather couldn’t be more different and I set out in brilliant sunshine, not a drop of rain in sight. I took the Truggan Road to Port St Mary, then followed the coast up to the Shore Hotel at Gansey, where I turned up to take the road roughly north towards Croit Y Caley.  The first two miles were so lovely. I do like it when the tide is in as it was today. The shoreline looks so perfect without the messy pebbles scattered all over the beach, and today it looked so blue.

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Photo: Gansey Bay

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Photo: The Mill at Kentraugh

The country lanes to Croit Y Caley are quiet and unspoit but there are no pavements. There are some nice looking traditional houses in this village and they look very cosy. After Croit Y Caley you hit the main back road with all its traffic, but you don’t go far along here, and there is a pavement. At this point you will have walked about 3 miles and you could get the bus back or the train from the Levels.

At the roundabout I turned left, past the tiny but perfectly formed Ballachurry Nature Reserve, and turned right at Kirk Christ, passing by the old cemetery and skirting round the Ponyfields estate in the distance.

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All this still on roads,and again no pavement, but there is virtually no traffic at any time on this road.  On meeting the Ballafesson road, I crossed immediately over to join a path going through the Rowany Golf Course. The view towards Fleshwick is stunning, helped of course by the glorious weather. On exiting the Golf Course, I turned towards Port Erin and followed the coast path (passing by my old flat on the cliff with its wonderful bay views) down onto the beach. I stopped at my favourite place where the waves crash against the rocks before continuing walking along the beach and up onto the far prom and the old breakwater, which was not visible at all today. After that, it was just the standard walk home.

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As you have read, most of this is on pavements or barely used roads, so you take a pushchair or a wheelchair all the way. If you don’t want to go over the Golf course, you can simply take the road back into Port Erin. You can start the walk by parking in Port Erin, taking the Ballafurt Road from behind the beach and then turning on to St Mary’s Road, which becomes Truggan Road.

 

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Not sure when my next blog will be. Sadly, I have a funeral of a very good friend to attend tomorrow, and the weather forecast isn’t great for the weekend, not that that usually puts me off. We’ll see.