above: tranquil West Bodrugan Wood
Duration / Distance: 45 minutes / 1.5 miles
Terrain: Steep up and down on grassy paths. Stiles at Cotna Eco Retreat.
Overview: Recently planted (2001) community woodland with few visitors, good views of nearby fields, woods and hills with sea in the distance at Portmellon.
Leave Cotna Eco Retreat through entrance way then immediately right up along 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. 2 broken ankles here in the past year! (The name Cotna is possibly a shortening of crac-y-conna meaning “break your neck”! It is very steep and safer to come up rather than down!)
At bottom keep going down to the left; cross the stream and go steeply uphill then left along the top of the ridge: at the bench pause and look back at the view to the sea. Continue to the end of the ridge then turn left back down to the stream and 2nd bridge at the bottom. Over the bridge head steeply back up to the stile back into the neighbouring horse fields at the top. Watch for the tower of Gorran Haven church appearing over the skyline as the path slightly changes direction.