The rugged west of Cornwall
There is nothing I can say to prepare you for this course.
It will test you to the very limits.
I will give you a glimpse in these paragraphs of what to expect.
The race is mostly self navigated but with some marshals and additional signage in areas that are little more complicated
You start in Pendeen Rovers home ground of Borlaise Park. Out you run along the gravel track before taking a left, down the road to Pendeen Lighthouse. This is your easy bit. A nice downhill road section to open your legs and stretch the field out before the narrow footpaths of the South West coast path.
Follow the road around to the right, past your first lighthouse and down the steeper hill onto the path. You run down here for about 300 yards before turning off to the right onto the coast path proper.
You then have the longest half marathon of your life.
There are some tiny runnable bits. Apart from that, you will find, streams, mud, rocks to climb, steep downhills and many, many uphills. The first drink/feed station will be at Gurnard's Head
This brings you into St Ives.
Your second feed station will be at Porthmeor beach
You follow the streets through St Ives to The Island or St. Ives Head. Around the headland and down to Porthgwidden Beach and on round to St Ives harbour front. This is all along the official coast path. We will help you where we can but there are a fair few acorns out there as well to show the way. Through St Ives, look left, its your second lighthouse then past the lifeboat station and on to Porthminster. From there, you climb up to Hain walk and continue along the road towards Carbis bay. Down the path, through the hotel complex, up the awful road hill before turning left onto the coast path again. You stay on this path through trees, mud, more hills until you reach the dunes. Stay high up, near the railway track, over the footbridge on your right and around the golf course to St Uny's Church at Lelant. Here is your third water/feed station.
You may think you have done the worst of it. It is now the mind sapping section of Lelant to Black Rocks in Hayle. Miles of open road and Hayle town.
After the church, make sure you turn down left, onto Green Lane and The Saltings. Once you have gone a mile or so, do not miss the tiny left turn into Saltings Reach, Through the hedge and turn right into the estate then left onto the B3301, the main road into Hayle. This is a very busy and fast road, please treat it with respect. You stay on the footpaths (NOT THE ROAD) all the way into Hayle. This is the only deviation from the coast path signs. DO NOT go round Carnsew Pool. Stay on the straight path into Hayle and DO NOT go up onto the cycle path on your right. We won't disqualify you, it just means you are doing extra milage.
Round Hayle harbour, along the grass towards Philps. Follow the road round then turn left over the bridge and run along the main road of North Quay before following the dirt track road up to Black Rocks car park. This is your last water/feed stop before the finish.
You are now entering the infamous Dunes of Doom.
There are a lot of slate signs showing the way but if you are unfamiliar with the area, it can be tricky.
The map I have done and the gpx route follow the exact coast path. I mapped it using satellite images rather than the OS marked path.
Once you have survived the dunes, you reach Gwithian Towans car park. Through you go, down a short hill and around to St Gothian Sands nature reserve. Do not miss the right turn up into the dune grass!
Through the reserve, over the nice new stone walkway and across the Red River. You can see the finish on your right but you've a little further to go yet and one more lighthouse to see.
Up the stairs, across the car park and follow the path beside the road. This is the second time, you will not follow the exact coast path..
Stay on the path all the way to the last car park. Marshals will guide you round the car park, grab a photo then send you back to the finish. Follow the same footpath (the only time the sea will be on your right), across the car park whilst giving hi fives to the runners going the other way then down the stairs.
You can now see the finish proper, round the left side of The Rockpool and there it is.
THE FINISH LINE!!