65b – Eastney

One of the first things we saw on arriving at Portsea Island was really quite beautiful.  A yacht cut through the sunlit waves followed by a gull who glided alongside.

12 - Yacht and GullThis yacht was sailing out of Langstone Channel and into the open sea.  As it sailed off I checked my map.  We were on the eastern corner of Portsea Island and my GPS was showing a footpath around this corner of the island, however, my map disagreed.  It showed no footpath.  The lie of the land seemed to agree with my GPS; there was a clear trail through the grass where many feet had passed before us.  We decided to follow this trail, which soon petered out onto a shingle beach.  Ahead of us was a jetty.

First Jetty on Portsea Island

Never one to miss a jetty (when walking the coast of Britain all jetties must be walked, otherwise you feel as if you have cheated) I thought I might gain some vantage point showing me whether the beach was accessible all the way around.  It wasn’t.

The Blocked PathTo be sure, I jogged over to the fencing whilst the remainder of the Coastal Clan ambled slowly behind.  There was no way through.  “Go back!” I yelled into the walkie talkie I now always carry with me.  The walkie talkies were an idea of my friend and Guest Walker, Mike.  A great idea they were too, so think the remainder of my family.  Whenever we get to a bit of coastal path which looks as though it might finish in a dead end, or whenever we think we may have taken a wrong turn, they always get the walkie talkies out.

“You run on ahead and we’ll follow!” my wife always tells me, with that funny look on her face which I know means she is trying not to smirk at me.  I always run along as ordered, and if the way is blocked I radio back to them so they can avoid the unnecessary walk.  Sometimes, however, I radio back to say the way is open.  On those occasions, they seem to take an extraordinary long time to catch up and I realise they have just been sitting there, resting, waiting to find out whether they should bother walking forwards or backwards.  I suppose, if you are going to walk the entire coast of Britain, saving a few feet here and there soon builds up.  But what would I know?  I never get the opportunity.

“Go back!” I yelled into the walkie talkie.  Back we went, joining a road instead and heading southwest.  We walked to the north side of Fort Cumberland, a pentagonal fort built between 1785-1810 to protect Langstone Harbour, but it was almost invisible to us from the road.  A housing development or two later and we were able to rejoin the coast at Eastney Beach.  Eastney Beach is reportedly a naturist beach, but it was way too cold for any of that today, besides which we kept to the promenade rather than the expansive beach itself; I suspect the naturist beach is tucked away in a quiet corner and not visible from the promenade.

Eastney Beach

Points on this part of the walk (copy and paste the co-ordinates into Google Earth):

  • Jetty:  N 50° 47.335 W 001° 01.690
  • Fort Cumberland:  N 50° 47.335 W 001° 01.950
  • Eastney Beach:  N 50° 47.105 W 001° 02.750

Walk #65 Statistics (of which this post forms the second part):

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3 Responses to 65b – Eastney

  1. Excellent Walkie talkie idea – but should you not all be taking the pathfinding in turns? Try that suggestion, and see if it has any effect on the smirk factor… RH

  2. michael says:

    yes something should be done at the very unpleasant & dangersous condition of the pathway leading to the beach following the work upgrading the nearby caravan park and holiday site. will . will ,get in touch with the Portsmouth City Council about this , it is after all their job for this, Regards Michael.

  3. michael says:

    This is for Eastney Beach.

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