Craig’s Trans Kernow report

Day 1

I’m reporting back on an amazing Trans Kernow, a 2 day adventure bikepacking around the county. 186 people turned up for the event that all left Friday evening from Rockets and Rascals in Plymouth, each of us had one main aim to get to Polzeath and Penzance and back that weekend. Some like myself headed off into the night while others stayed in Plymouth until morning, some rode to accommodation elsewhere and stayed in everything from 5 star hotels to camping and we all had our own routes planned. 

While some headed for the ferry I headed for the Tamar bridge, once the other side I stopped at McDonald’s by Carkeel roundabout to eat as it was my only chance on the route I had around the top of Bodmin nothing was open apart from Plusha services on the A40 about halfway to Polzeath where I stopped to rest and have a coffee. My aim that night was cover as much as could to gain ground on such a long ride and I finally arrived in Polzeath at 3am.

I waited until daylight to leave grabbing some rest on the beach listen to the sound of the surf, I was hoping for a sunrise but had to settle for the fog rolling in instead. At 6am I left and headed to Wadebridge, breakfast was a crude affair of Belgian buns, cookies, coffee and blueberry oats from the co-op. Later I skirted the edge of Newquay with it’s Bank Holiday traffic and sought the quieter lanes I used a lot on this trip. I re-emerged back on the coast at Perranporth with perfect timing to stop for lunch, although filling the pork burger at the Waterfront sat heavy when I tried climbing Liskey hill heading out of town. 

A highlight of the ride was to come riding down the coast road through Porthtowan  and Portreath, stopping in Portreath for water and an ice cream before climbing another steep hill to get out. Around Gwithian head and down to Hayle I picked up the cycle route to Marizion and Penzance, I headed straight to the Jubilee pool to check in before looking for somewhere for dinner that evening down by the harbour. I left Penzance back out on the cycle path I came in on at around 8:30pm and it was raining. I had a B&B booked that night in Fraddam about 10 miles away and checked in at 9:30pm.

Day 2

I woke late, I’d overslept by an hour and left later than planned. 7am start turned out to be 9am. When I left it was into thick fog yet again which soon cleared after I’d passed Stithians Lake and later stopped at Bike Chain Bissoe for coffee and something to eat. I had a route planned and day one I stuck to it most of the way, only a diversion through St Newlyn East to miss out Newquay but on day two from Bissoe I picked a different route. I followed route 3 as a safe passage into Truro and then swiftly out again onto the Trafalgar Way route, mind you it wasn’t actually swift as I had another steep hill to climb. Picking back roads to miss out the A390 I made my way to St Austell Bay, briefly stopping in Sticker and a longer stop in Charlestown where I had a look around as it was my first time there. 

Fowey was the next port of call and it was on the original route but I was going to catch the Boddenick ferry but decided instead to cross to Polruan instead, another place I hadn’t been before. In fact there were 3 places I hadn’t previously been and the other was Polzeath. Polruan was a treat, probably the steepest hill of them all to get out of there but the sea views from the clifftop line heading away from the village made it worthwhile. 

Time was running out and while I had a sandwich in Fowey I booked a room at the travelodge in Plymouth for that night knowing I was going to be late. I was, I stopped briefly in Looe and it was 9pm. I had ideas of fish n chips in town before I left, instead it was another garage stop for a chocolate milk drink and snacks. Eventually when I finally wizzed down the hill and onto the Torpoint ferry it was 11pm. I headed straight to my hotel and crashed, I was shattered. 

I checked back in to Rockets and Rascals on Monday to have Brevet card stamped completed and grabbed coffee and breakfast. It was a tough ride, the hills were relentless and brutal but I was in good spirits the whole time and it helped keep me going, Cornwall is a beautiful place and I was having fun. The whole ride has been incredible and amazing but boy oh boy am I tired today!