Having checked the tides, we scramble north from Llangrannog along the coastal path, collecting dry twigs and old man’s beard as we go – we have a fire in mind. We stop to read the story of the giant Bica who lost his tooth between the beaches of Llangrannog and Cilborth, the ‘tooth’ standing in the sea as a reminder to all reluctant toothbrushers, but not for too long: the beach – our beach – is calling us.
We hit the headland, Ynys Lochtyn, and make our way down the middle of the outcrop to marvel at the rock folds, the cliffs, the island separated by a narrow channel – hoping to see dolphins, before retracing our steps to find the precipitous path down to Traeth yr Ynys.
At low tide, the beach stretches empty before us save for shells, pebbles, a stray strand of seaweed. Time for stone stacking, a surprisingly compulsive occupation – before thoughts turn to lunch. A tepee of twigs constructed below the high tide line lights with reasonable ease, and we cook up tins of sardines and baked beans – a feast, all the better for being eaten out of doors, the fire adding some warmth to the autumnal day.
The tide on the turn, we pick up our belongings and take care to spend two minutes picking up any other plastic we find to take away with us – and realise we are being watched by a solitary seal – clearly curious about the creatures disturbing his shore. Curiosity satisfied, the seal disappears, as we must too – thoughts of the homemade ice cream at the Patio Café, LLangrannog, (peach and wild cherry, perhaps, or apple pie flavour?) spurring us up the cliff.