Wales Coast Path Run – Rhoscrowther to Pembroke
Coast Path Vital Stats
Rhoscrowther to Pembroke
- Distance: 9.04 miles
- Elevation Gain Today: 324m
- Highest Elevation: 66m
- Time: 1:46:48
- Av. Pace: 11:49 mins/mile
- Calories: 910
Totals to Date
- Total Distance: 933.513 miles
- Total Time: 175:27:42
- Total Elevation Gain: 27744
- Total Calories: 88106
- Distance to go: 166 miles
This was my third run along the coast path during this trip to Pembrokeshire. Not being able to run longer distances these days meant that stringing a few runs into a long weekend made it worthwhile. So, after a busy few days of sight-seeing and running it was time to pack up from our Air BnB and once again head onto the Coast Path.
We drove the mile or so from the cottage to my starting point for the day and I headed off around the headland. It was a nice day, sunny spells and not too hot but it looked dry. I did have a waterproof with me just in case though as there were some heavy showers forecast. We’d recce’d a suitable ‘halfway’ point about 4 miles into todays run so Anna set off in the car to that location.
Around Valero Oil Refinery
The first part of the run took me along a tarmac road up onto the headland that is well and truly dominated by the Valero Oil Refinery. It’s certainly an imposing site with chimneys, pipes and huge stroage tanks. It’s massive and dominates the skyline for miles around. That said, once up fairly close it’s actually quite difficult to see it as it is well obscured by trees and shrubs. From my vantage point I would’t even have know it was there.
The hedgerows were dripping with blackberries and sloes and the fact that these roads are closed roads only used for oil refinery access meant that all was quiet and there was plenty of wildlife around too.
I took a left hand turn up a steep hill and then onto pleasant wooded tracks around the refinery. Again, all was quiet and it was pleasant running along these secluded trails and you liteally wouldn’t know that millions of barrels of oil were being processed just a few metres away. In fact, fromt his vantage point the only clues were when there was a view of the estuary with it’s huge jetties that had enormous oil tankers moored alongside them.
I descended at one point down to and under a pipleline taking the oil from the tankers to the refinery itself. Even here all was quiet.
It was then another climb through pleasant woodland and then out into an open field where cows were grazing. The only thing different about this field of cows to any other was the fact that the fence that I was following along the edge of the field was 10 foot high and topped with several rows of razor wire. It was obviously to stop people getting into the refinery rather than to keep the cows in! This fact wasn’t lost on me though when the fairly friendly cows became a group of young calves and an enormous bull… If they took a dislike to me there was no escaping over that fence!
Thankfully they were only mildly interested in my passing and I was able to continue unhindered. From here it was a descent down a rocky track where I did finally get a glimpse of the refinery itself. I then headed into to Pwllcrochan where Anna was sat reading her book in the car.
On Towards Pembroke
After a quick hello and confirmation of where we would meet in Pembroke. It was back onto the path for me. This next part of the journey was taking me inland around the Pembroke Power Station. I’m not sure of the power station is there to supply the oil refinery or if it’s here because the oil it needs to generate power is close by. I’m sure I could find out.
The route took me through endless fields and woodlands with only occasional glimpses of the power station itself. Again it was good running conditions with ever changing terrain and nothing too difficult. There wasn’t much of note either but it was all very nice.
After rounding the power station I headed back towards the estaury where I had glimpses of the pebbly shoreline through the trees. There was a short stretch on a small road but I didn’t see any cars or any people for that matter. I’d been on my own all day so far.
The huge pylons carrying electricity away from the power station were constant companions though and could often be heard buzzing away overhead.
After a few ups and down and the varying terrain I eventually dropped down to the muddy inlet of Quoits Pill and ran past the Giant’s Tap.
From here I climbed up into the streets of Pembroke and ran towards the centre of the town where Anna was waiting for me in the pre-arraged car park.
That was another part of the coast path ticked off and I after a few runs this weekend I was now another 25 miles or so closer to my final destination. The next destination today was the Pemnbroke Leisure Centre for a quick shower and then we headed home with a stop in Cardigan to meet Dennis for lunch.