Looe Island (also known as St George’s Island) belonged to two sisters and at their passing it was entrusted to Cornwall Wildlife Trust and has now become a nature reserve. It is normally accessed by boat but a few times a year the Spring tides allow the mainlanders to walk across the seabed to the island shore.
This is something I’ve always wanted to do but never have. It was a spontaneous trip as I only found out about it the day before and knew that my Mum would like to come too.
We watched the tide heading out as we ate our picnic lunch before making our way down to the beach to have a look in the exposed rockpools. We saw a hermit crab and watched it scuttle across a rock (can you spot it?!) We were reminded of a Julia Donaldson book we enjoy -Sharing a Shell.
As we went further, my son loved seeing the seaweed sticking up from the sea bed. We found some that looked like crocodiles so we had to be careful as they kept snapping at our toes!
It was a wonderful atmosphere down there. I tend to avoid places where there might be lots of people as I prefer to be able to explore somewhere and have it to ourselves. But as my Mum said, it felt as though we were connected to people that would have made this journey in ancient times and it was lovely that even in this modern, technology-focused age, people were still in awe of this natural wonder and had come together to experience it.
The water gradually got deeper and I had to carry my son or he would have had to swim! It got to one point where the water was about to come up over my wellies, my arms were aching and I couldn’t judge how deep the water would get or how much further there was to go. I thought about turning back… A man returning from the island told me if I was going to carry on I’d get absolutely soaked, so I figured I may as well go for it! It was quite freeing. I think in life the ‘not knowing’ is sometimes the hardest part.
The water was absolutely freezing and came half way up my thighs but with shared giggles from fellow waders, we made it!
There wasn’t really time for exploring though because as soon as we had reached the shore, the tide was on its way back in again and would soon be too deep to cross.
So hand in hand we set off back to Hannafore beach, this time with the sway of the incoming tide urging us to go a little faster!
But we had time to stop and admire this large blue starfish! The picture doesn’t show how blue it was, we were both very impressed.
We were soon back on the beach again, all changed into dry clothes and sipping hot chocolate. We watched the sea slowly cover where we had walked, almost as if we had never been there, and thought of my Auntie who would have been delighted to hear about our adventure in this place she loved.