above: Sanctuary Wood in bluebell season
Duration / Distance: 90 minutes / 2.5 miles
Terrain: Steep up and downs, some walking on very quiet lanes. Stiles at Cotna Eco Retreat
Overview: Through Sanctuary Wood then along scenic lanes to ancient Galowras Mill and oak woods, back through West Bodrugan Woods nature reserve to Sanctuary Wood.
Leave Cotna Eco Retreat through entrance way then immediately right upalong the hedge of the oval field. Over the stile on the right, cross 2 horse fields on the path, then over the 3rd stile into the Woodland Trust’s Sanctuary Wood. Turn left along the top, then first right down to the bottom of the hill, rather than the direct downhill near vertical muddy and slippery footpath.
At bottom keep going down to the left, over the stream and steeply up the other side. Follow the ridge to the left along the top: at the bench pause and look back at the view to the sea. Continue to the end of the ridge then fork right down to an access gate onto the lane. Turn right down the lane to the next junction at the stream. Turn right and walk along the lane to Galowras Mill, keep right on the lane over the stream and start uphill.
Turn right through the gateway where the woodland track crosses the lane; follow the path through the woods keeping to the right where the path splits. Follow the path out of the woods, across the wilding field and back to the gate at the bottom of Sanctuary Wood. Turn left up the steep climb of Cotna Hill, or take the second left on the easier but slightly longer route back to the top, then over the stile at the top back into the neighbouring horse fields. Watch for the tower of Gorran church appearing over the skyline as the path slightly changes direction.