Billie's March walk
We're hoping for a some sunshine this month so that we can dry out a little! Our walk this month has lovely views, plenty of history and a good amount of off lead time for dogs and children. One large squelchy patch and also potentially soggy fields though there is an alternative route that, whilst not as peaceful, avoids both! It has two long ascents and corresponding more gentle descents. Mostly even underfoot. A couple of stretches of very quiet roads. It is our usual one hour-ish. It can be done more swiftly if desired and it can also be completed at a more leisurely, exploratory pace.
The walk will be available to all free of charge for the duration of the month. We hope you enjoy it as much as we do!
This walk begins at the small car park opposite Wheal Peevor, left turn off the Radnor Road from Treleigh (OS ref: SW 709 442, nearest postcode TR16 4BQ). Turn left out of the car park to walk with care towards Radnor Road and then turn left at the junction into the no through road. This road is quiet but is used as access by a golf club and also by large lorries at times. Follow this road past some houses and the left-hand lane (the destination of the lorries) and on past a few more fields.
Just before the house, marked by tall trees, turn left into a field gateway. Please keep dogs under close control as even if there aren’t sheep in this field there may be in a neighbouring one. Follow the signed footpath over the high stile and across the field to exit through the gate. Go straight, with the long barns on your left. It can get very squelchy along this part. Turn left, uphill at the end of the barns and keep going straight along the track and then lane. At the end of the lane go through the gate into the field and follow the right-hand hedge into the bottom corner.
As you descend you will have a lovely view of the converted Wheal Rose Engine House, a labour of love renovation completed in 2005. In the corner go over the wall/ stile with a gate. Please close the gate after you’ve gone through and proceed along the often-overgrown path (though fortunately well trimmed at the moment!). Go over the next stile carefully as the granite can get exceptionally slippery when wet, especially the bottom step. At the end of the path turn left and go around the gate.
The fields we have just left sometimes have sheep in them so if you would rather avoid them, or the stiles, there is a longer but not as peaceful alternative. On Radnor Road ignore the footpath over the field and go straight past the houses and onto a narrow path that runs alongside the A30. There is a fence and a small amount of undergrowth between the path and the road but there are still places where a dog or child could get through so do take care. At the end go straight forward on the pavement and turn left at the junction (not into Rodda’s!). Take the granite marked path on the left after Rodda’s field and at the end cross the road into the lane on the right. Follow this access lane past the Old Forge Garage and once you reach the gate you’re back with us.
This wide track is part of the Portreath to Devoran Coast to Coast trail and so can get quite busy, especially with cyclists, at holiday times. There are also still lots of sheep filled fields along here so with them and the cyclists please keep dogs close.
For much of the 1800s this was the Mineral Tramroad that ran from the mines in this area to Portreath Harbour. The plateway was initially just iron rails on which horse or mule drawn wagons ran. This was still a vast improvement, by both cargo size and the ability to run regardless of weather, on the pack-horses and more often the mule trains that were previously used to transport ore to the harbour. The ships took the copper mined here to South Wales for smelting and returned full of coal to work the mine steam engines. Much of the huge quantities of timber used in the mines was brought by ship all the way from Scandinavia and Canada, with Pitch Pine deemed the most durable.
After the second gate turn left uphill on a partially made track. Carry on along the track through the next gate and bear right behind the stables and house. On reaching the road by the holiday Park turn left. At the corner go straight onto another wide track with some of Wheal Peevor now in sight on your left. Follow this long track slightly downhill and around the bends at the end. You will see the somewhat dilapidated West Wheal Peevor Engine House ahead of you as you walk along here. When you reach an intersection turn left. On your left now is a quarry like area that was accessible but has become incredibly overgrown in the last year.
Starting to climb upwards once more take the left-hand path after the bend. Have a look around the Calciners ahead of you and then return to the path to loop around the Arsenic chimney and attached partial flue walls at the end. There are many very good information boards on this sight. Turn left at the next one to head uphill on the main track once more. The magnificent building ahead is the Pumping Engine House, but first we take another left to explore the Stamps Engine House. The board on this corner details all the associated remains of this house. Bear in mind the area with the buddles can get overgrown, so watch your step.
Make your way over to the other two Engine Houses under the cute archway that was one of two entrances to the boiler house once attached to the Pumping Engine House. This House and the Winding Engine House were both used for Sir Frederick’s Shaft, part of Little North Downs Mine. Do keep a close watch on children as there are drops off easily climbable walls around this part. There are several more boards dotted around, detailing the history of the site and how things worked. Explore as you wish, then with the Pumping Engine House and arch to your right follow the path forwards. The only bin on this walk is at the gate (unless you took the long route past Rodda’s). Cross over the road back to the car park.
By undertaking this walk you are accepting full responsibility for the safety and wellbeing of yourself and those in your party. © AC Elliott 2020