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Day 1 – Land’s End to Caradon Town (nr. Liskeard)

In Cycling most of Land's End to John O'Groats | 28 Apr 2023 | cycling

Woke bright and early at 5:55, just before my 6am alarm. Coffee, snack, check and check again, then off!

Back a mile to Land’s End shrouded in mist/cloud with nobody about. Good job I got the obligatory sign photo yesterday. Excited to be really on my way!

Tourist center at Land's End

The Land’s End “complex”, start of LEJOG

About 11 miles to Penzance and a fine breakfast at Sullivan’s diner. In the mist almost the whole time but then below it to see the Penzance beach and St. Michael’s Mount a couple of miles east.

A hearty breakfast

Breakfast at Sullivan’s Diner, Penzance

St. Micheal's Mount from the beach at Penzance

St. Micheal’s Mount

From there it was back to little roads up and down small, but sometimes steep hills. The problem with the little roads is that it isn’t possible to see very far ahead with the bends and tall hedges, so it isn’t sensible to enjoy the downhills properly. I ended up riding the bakes a lot.

Cornish minor road

Typical Cornish minor road

After 39 miles I descended to the King Harry Ferry, a chain ferry over the Fal river. Two pounds bike fare. Met another cyclist who was doing a Plymouth to Land’s End and back bike packing event.

King Harry Ferry over the Fal river

From there it was up and down and up and down, but with brightening skies, to St Austell where I got a very tasty Cornish Pasty for lunch and also quite lost. The benefit of getting lost was seeing this very pretty church.

Holy Trinity Church in St. Austell

Holy Trinity Church in St. Austell

Just a few more miles into Fowey and another ferry. On this one we had to wait for other traffic on the busy River Fowey.

Big ship in front of the Fowey River ferry

From the Fowey River ferry

Positively sunny and warm weather. I removed my “arms” and broke out the sunscreen. Some lovely little roads with trees overgrowing to create a tunnel effect.

Road with overhanging trees

Tree tunnel

At some point I turned north to Liskeard instead of south to Polpero and Looe, places I fondly remember from childhood family holidays.

Signs to places known of old: Looe and Polpero

Arrived in Liskeard at 3pm, just 6 miles short of my destination for the day. Squandered some time eating soup and rehydrating, then biked the last few miles during which I briefly crossed the cattle guards onto Bodmin Moor which has open grazing. Arrived feeling pretty good and found welcoming hosts with a very excitable young spaniel, Lottie. Excellent pie for dinner at The Manor House Inn about 30 minutes walk away – a walk was good but that was perhaps more than ideal.

A total of 89 miles and 8,500 feet of elevation gain. Almost 7 hours pedaling. No rain.

Day 1 map - Lands End to Liskeard

Day 1 route