Kayak Cornwall contains information about short and medium range sea kayak trips exploring the coast of Cornwall with Paul Bennett and Kevin Gaston. Occasionally joined by other friends and always planned and paddled with care.

If you are interested in sea kayaking in Cornwall you might find this site of use to you. We are pleased to hear feedback from our readers and encourage you to add additional information about any of the areas listed using the comment link. You can post anonymously if you are shy!

Saturday 10 October 2015

Mylor Harbour to Nare Head & Gull Rock

This could well be the last good day of Summer 2016. The sun was shining and warm and the sea was calm so we did not waste it. As I had to be back on shore by a given time perhaps it was not the best idea to paddle 21 miles but the day was too good to waste on a lesser trip. Mylor yacht harbour was as busy as any summers day when we set off and the Carrick Roads was full of boats of all sizes. After turning the corner at St Anthony lighthouse the traffic was quieter but we were accompanied for a short while by a double sea kayak heading towards Bohortha Beach.

Passing Towan beach and then Portscatho we started to head out to Nare Head and Gull Rock which is just under a mile from Nare, on the way we did see a few Porpoises in the distance which was very pleasing as they were the first I have seen all of this summer. As the tide was working against us it took a bit more effort to make the last mile as the tidal flow accelerates between Nare Head and Gull rock but as we approached closer to the rock this eased off. Just off the rock there were a couple of kayak fishermen taking advantage of the calm weather and having fun.

After circumnavigating this large rock, we rafted up to drink tea, have lunch and take in the view. It was a bit of a distance to cover given my time schedule but I am happy to say that I did get back in time to eat and go to a music concert in the evening. Unloading kit at 11.30 at night in my neighbourhood is a bit anti-social I know, but the day was worth it.

Wildlife Observed: Gannet, Grey heron, Little egret Kestrel (1), Curlew Purple sandpiper (1), Oystercatcher, Mediterranean gull (2), Raven (1), Rock pipit Linnet (20+), Porpoise (3+), Grey seal (6)

Look For: 
Carrick Roads
Falmouth Docks
St Mawes Castle
St Anthony's Lighthouse
Bohortha Beach.
Porthbeor Beach
Towan Beach
Pendower Beach
Carne Beach
Nare Head
Gull Rock
Gerrans Bay

Other water users including ferries, sailing and motor boats. Also be aware of the movement of large ships around Falmouth Docks and the Carrick Roads.
Tidal flow between Gull Rock and Nare Head

Paddle No: 36
Date: 3/10/2015
Wind: Force 1 - 2 SW
Temperature: 15 degrees
Weather: Sun
Distance Covered: 21 miles
Duration: 6hrs
Access: Easy launch from Mylor Harbour no landing on Gull Rock
Sea state: Smooth
Kayaks: Nigel Dennis Romany,  P&H Quest

    Mylor Harbour to
    Nare Head
    & Gull Rock

Click map to enlarge

Saturday 26 September 2015

Sennen Cove to Newlyn

This paddle has been waiting to go on the blog for some time and the Kevins x 2 will now be pleased that I have at last uploaded it. It’s a good paddle for anyone with a sea kayak but not really suitable for a sit-on due to the distance of over 15 miles. We left Sennen Cove in thick fog but the sea was calm with little swell. The Longships lighthouse was not visible so we kept fairly close to the shore, there was just a little current around Lands End and the light wind was in our favour but the fog hung around. Moving towards Gwennap Head, we saw three other kayakers coming towards us through the gloom. It was a friend of mine Sam with two of her buddies paddling from Porthgwarra to Sennen.

Stopping for a quick tea break at Porthgwarra we went past Porthchapel beach and on to The Minack and Porthcurno beach and past Logan Rock. Fortunately by this time the mist had cleared and the sun started to burn through at St Loye. The next port of call was Tater Du lighthouse then Lamorna Cove for a short break before heading NE towards Mousehole then on to our landing spot at Newlyn.

As usual we saw much bird life and many seals who were happy to follow us for a mile at a time.

Wildlife Observed: Gannet, Fulmar, Razorbill (40+), Grey heron, Oystercatcher, Redshank, Kittiwake, Mediterranean gull (1), Rock pipit, Grey seal (20-30)

Look For: 
Sennen Lifeboat Station
Cowloe Rocks
Longships Reef and Lighthouse
Wolf Rock Lighthouse
Old Coastguard Lookout
60m Cliffs
The Wreck of the Mulheim
The Armed Knight Rock
Enys Dodnan Arch
Mill Bay / Nanjizel
Pendower Coves
Folly Cove
Porth Loe
Gwennap Head
The Runnel Stone
Porthgwarra Cove
Porthchapel Beach
St Loy Beach
Tater Du Lighthouse
Lamorna Cove
St Clements Isle
Penlee Lifeboat Station

Not a trip to do in large swell or strong wind
Tidal flow and reefs at Lands End
Many reefs and currents around points and headlands (get your tides right)
Strong tidal flow just off Porthgwarra Cove between Runnelstone and shore on full Ebb and flow.

Paddle No: 35
Date: 21/6/2015
Wind: Force 1-2 SW
Temperature: 16 degrees
Weather: Foggy turning to sun
Distance Covered: 15.3 miles
Duration: 5hrs
Access: Easy via Sennen Cove slipway
Sea state: Smooth
Kayaks: Nigel Dennis Romany x 2, P&H Quest

   Sennen Cove
   to Newlyn

Click map to enlarge

Wednesday 9 September 2015

Glenfinnan to Isle of Muck

OK it's not in Cornwall I know but it is a worthy entry. This was a late August 2015 paddle starting at the Glenfinnan Memorial at the top of Loch Shiel and ending on the Isle of Muck. Our route took us the length of Loch Shiel on which we had interesting 40mph gust’s blowing from behind, a quick visit to St Finnans Chapel on Eilean Fhianain and our first night on the shore of the loch. The following day we followed the river Shiel (very scenic and a favoured fishing spot) ending at the infamous spillway connection (where I fell out) and into Loch Moidart, finally reaching the coast and turning left into open water at Eilean Shona.

We then headed West along the coast until we reached Kilmory Beach where we had a another night camping and complaining about midges. In the morning we did our 8 mile open water crossing to the Isle of Muck. We were just a few miles East of Ardnamurchan Point which is well known for being the most westerly point on the British mainland and for picking up large Atlantic swell, but this was a relatively good day with smooth moving hills of water gently lifting and lowering us out of sight of each other.

Muck is a lovely little island! We were advised by a local fisherman that we could camp at the Community Centre and that they had hot showers, internet and a kitchen which could be used by all for a small fee, and they did! Muck also has the most wonderful cafe owned by Jenny (one nice lady) and also married to the Islands owner. Even if you do not kayak, take a day trip on the ferry, you will not be disappointed. http://www.isleofmuck.com

Unfortunately the weather forecast for the following few days was for high wind and waves, so we decided to catch the ferry back to Arisaig as the safe option as our next open crossing back to the mainland was going to be over 11 miles. Now it was just the 750 mile drive back home to deal with! This is an achievable adventure for many sea kayakers and a memorable 41 mile journey for me and all in the great company of Mr Kevin Jackson.

   Glenfinnan to
   Isle of Muck

Click map to enlarge

Wednesday 22 October 2014

Loe Beach to Tresillian

After listening to the weather forecast and hearing that the tail end of Hurricane Gonzalo was going to reach Cornwall by the end of the day, we thought it prudent to do another river trip. We left Loe Beach near Feock thinking that we may have to fight our way back against strong winds and mountainous sea’s, but not so! The sun shone and apart from a gentle headwind it was easy paddling all the way.

This was a record for bird spotting and no less than 7 Kingfishers were seen, along with many other airborne creatures. I am a coastal kayaker by choice but I have to admit to the joy of seeing so much wildlife around the rivers and creeks.

Once again we were joined by Kevin J and Jan, who are becoming regulars on these trips and we met John on the beach who was a welcome addition. Yet another trip that you should plan to do on an incoming tide and returning on the outgoing tide, that’s unless you want to be stuck miles from anywhere surrounded by mud. This would be a great trip to do on a sit-on kayak if you dont mind paddling some distance.

Wildlife Observed:
Little grebe (1),Grey heron, (c.10), Little egret (c.10), Mute swan (13), Canada goose (30+), Shelduck (3), Osprey (1), Buzzard (6), Curlew (c.60),Redshank (c.80), Greenshank (6), Common sandpiper (1), Kingfisher (7), Jay (2), Fallow deer (c.10)

Look For:
Birds and Wildlife
Pill Creek
Turnaware Point
Trelissick House
King Harry Ferry
Moored Ships
Smugglers Cottage
St Clement
Tresillian & Bridge

Mud (lots of it at anything but high tide)
Tidal current at Turnaware Bar
Other river users
King Harry Ferry
Wind can get brisk at times in river sections

Paddle No: 34
Date: 19/10/2014
Wind: Force 2 - 3 WSW
Temperature: 13 degrees
Weather: Sun, light cloud
Distance Covered: 14.4 miles
Duration: 5.5hrs
Access: Easy launch from Loe Beach
Sea state: Smooth
Kayaks: Nigel Dennis Romany x 2, P&H Quest, P&H Vela, Dagger Alchemy

   Loe Beach
   to Tresillian

Click map to enlarge

Monday 13 October 2014

Falmouth to Porthoustock

It could have been a summers day but this was October. The sun was shining and the sea calm on this scenic stretch of coast. We left from Maenporth Beach near Falmouth, not somewhere we would normally launch from but Sea Kayaking Cornwall had their symposium over the weekend and many participants were spread far and wide (good fun they were having too).

A gentle paddle past Rosemullion Head and down to Helford River where there was some wind blowing out of the river mouth, around Nare Point and onwards passing Porthallow, Porthkerris and eventually arriving at Porthoustock where lunch was taken on the steeply sloping shingle beach.

Kevin G and I were joined by Kevin J and Jan for the trip and we had a relaxed paddle over the 12 miles covered. We saw others fishing from kayaks along the way, seals and sea birds.

Wildlife Observed: 
Gannet (5), Guillemot (7), Red-breasted merganser (2), Oystercatcher (many), Grey seal (2)

Look For:
Wreck of Ben Asdale (Maenporth Beach)
Rosemullion Head
Mawnan Church
Helford River
Gillan Creek
St. Anthony Point
Nare Point (Helford)
Porthkerris Dive Center
Dean Quarry
The Manacles

If there is an offshore wind, it gets brisk when paddling across the Helford River
Not much tidal movement until after Porthoustock
The Manacles Rocks. Many Currents!

Paddle No: 33
Date: 11/10/2014
Wind: Force 1 - 2 SW
Temperature: 14 degrees
Weather: Sunny.
Distance Covered: 12.2 miles
Duration: 4 hrs
Access: Easy launch from Maenporth Beach
Sea state: Smooth
Kayaks: Nigel Dennis Romany x 2, P&H Quest, P&H Vela

   to Porthoustock

Click map to enlarge