There appeared to be a nice weather window opening up for 3 or 4 days on the West coast of Scotland; unfortunately I could not take advantage of it due to problems with my bike! The absence of any public transport where I would be walking, meant it was imperative that I used my bike. I had bought a cheap[? £110] Chinese bike on Amazon and it turned out not only to be a death trap but also a load of junk! I got my money back and they did not even ask for the bike back, instead they said give it to charity! I could not use this bike even for spare parts, it was that rubbish! My old bike, which is a non-folder had developed a problem with its derailleurs. I have since bought a good quality second-hand bike of Ebay (a Dahon Cadenza). I therefore opted to do a quickie one-dayer on the East Yorkshire coast.
I had delayed doing this walk for a couple of days in order to get the tide just right, as I would be doing the entire walk on the beach. I drove to and parked in the free car park near the leisure centre in Withernsea. I then walked about 200m towards the sea front to catch the 8:45 #129 bus to Hornsea. It was nice looking at the scenery as the bus drove up the coastal road. I say this because often when you just walk along the beach, all you get to see is the sea on one side and the cliff-face on the other. And so it turned out to be.
I left the prom of Hornsea behind and looking north could still make out the white lighthouse at Flambrough Head in the far far distance. On my right flank was the ever present boulder clay cliff varying from 4 – 6m in height which would be with me all the way to Withernsea. It was obvious from the off that this stretch of coast is seriously threatened by erosion at quite an alarming rate. Evidence of slumping could be seen along the entire coast. The most prominent signs of the erosion were the Second World War military buildings which littered the shore, together with underground cables and drains now exposed to the sea.
I entered onto a section of coast that used to form part of the Cowden Firing Range, which ceased operations back in 1998 and finally closed in 2013. However, the RAF is still actively involved by performing weekly ‘sweeps’ along the coast for unexploded ordnance. I came across one such device close to the foot of the cliff. The ordnance looked to be similar to other devices I had seen in the media, I did not get too close. When I got home I called Humber Coastguard to report the find. Apparently, they get regular reports of unexploded devices, that’s why they do so many sweeps of the beach..
Apart from the jumbled pill-boxes and observation towers which had tumbled onto the beach, there was not a great deal to hold one’s interest, although I did find some lovely coloured pebbles which I would lacquer at a later date. After just over 4 hours of walking in a straight line I emerged onto the sea front at Withernsea. Not an inspiring day, but better than trying to walk along the un-pathed cliff top.
Distance today = 16 miles
Total distance = 3,724 miles