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Coast to Coast Trail (Cornwall Mineral Tramways)


18 km / 11 miles
Full of contrast, this superb trail links the historic mining harbours of Portreath on the exposed Atlantic coast and Devoran beside the sheltered waters of Restronguet Creek. Mostly off-road, it passes through ancient woodland, heathland and the historic mining sites with remains of the Trevithick engine houses that provided motive power for the mines. As well as beautiful countryside and coastal views, the Trail passes many historic mine sites now transformed by nature. It passes via Cambrose and Scorrier down the Poldice Valley and the Carnon riverside.

It closely follows the line of two early horse-drawn tram roads, the Portreath Tramroad and the Redruth & Chasewater Railway. These were built to take copper ore from the then richest known mineralised area in the world - Gwennap, 'the Copper Kingdom'. The geology of the Redruth-Camborne area then made it the world's largest producer of tin and copper. The Cornwall Mining World Heritage Site marks the significant mining sites in this and nearby areas.

This is one of the Mineral Tramway trails which explore Cornwall's mining heartland. A further system of past Mineral Tramways in several linking multi-user trails are being developed across Cornwall as 'The Cornish Way' by the Countryside Service in partnership with Sustrans, in all some 180 miles.

Details of the trails, maps and downloads and information on the World Heritage Site are on the links below, with more useful links on the Camel Trail page. The trail was featured in the Railway Walks BBC series with Julia Bradbury.


Path Type: Other Paths
Attributes: Easy
Former Railway
Cycle Route
Industrial History
Start: SW655455 - Portreath, Cornwall View on StreetMap
Finish: SW789393 - Devoran, Cornwall View on StreetMap
Web Sites: Oliver's Cornwall - Mining Trails Oliver's Cornwall - Coast-to-Coast Walkers Mining Trail Sustrans - Mineral Tramways Coast to Coast Cornish Coast to Coast Mineral Trail [Youtube video]

Publications, Badges and Certificates:

Guidebook Exploring Cornwall's tramway trails : volume 2 : the Coast-to-Coast Trail : Portreath to Devoran & beyond  (Landfall Publications  - 2000 )
Guidebook Exploring Cornwall's tramway trails : volume 1 : the Great Flat Lode Trail with Carn Brea and Carn Marth  (Landfall Publications  - 2001 )
Guidebook Julia Bradbury's railway walks  (Frances Lincoln (an imprint of Quarto)  - 2010 )


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Contains Ordnance Survey data © Crown copyright and database right 2016.
© OpenStreetMap contributors under Open Database Licence.
Rights of way data from selected Local Authorities.
Large scale digital mapping is provided by John Thorn.
At high zoom levels the route is indicative only.
Purchase Ordnance Survey Maps:
OS Landranger 203, 204
OS Landranger Active 203, 204
OS Explorer 104, 105
OS Explorer Active 104, 105
Other Paper Maps:
Around & About
Coast 2 Coast:Trail: Portreath to Devoran (Yellow Publications - 2024)

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Route Profile:

17.3 km (10.7 miles)
218 m (715 ft) ascent
110 m (361 ft)  maximum height

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