Walk Distance: 23.77km
Walk Gain (ups and downs): 383m
Recommend Start/Finish Point: La Corbiere Scenic carpark
Jewel in the Crown: La Corbiere Lighthouse and headland .
Other Places of Interest: La Moye Quarry, Beauport, St Brelade's Bay, Portelet Common, Noirmont, St Aubin's Village, Airport, St Ouen's Bay, Petit Port.
Part One: The South West Panorama.
Corbiere > Beauport > St Brelade’s Bay > Portelet > Noirmont
The start of this walk is in the scenic car park next to the large radio tower at La Corbiere. Right from the beginning of the walk you are presented with magnificent views across to the other islands and towards France (if it is clear). Leave the car park with the sea on your right past a sculpture which looks remarkably like a chocolate orange and after a few meters you will see a steep bay (La Rosiere) in front of you. The good news here is you don’t need to go all the way down as the path goes behind the hotel and up the other side onto the flat plateau. Head towards the small granite building and your route will suddenly plunge down towards the sea, as it follows a narrow gauge rail track. This route can be quite steep and gravelly, so be careful. Feel free to have a nosey at the large building here but our route follows the coast left and up some steps. After crossing the concrete track coming down from the desalination plant, head up the steps to the skyline. The next part of the walk crosses the heathland known as Les Landes d’Ouest and is dominated by an odd looking golf ball structure, which serves as a weather monitoring station. There are a few paths that snake over the area but if you keep heading for the golf ball you will eventually see La Moye Prison and that is your next goal.
Once you reach the prison complex, follow the road right and keep heading around the perimeter fence. The path leads up to the old signal station, then left past a granite sign marked “Mont es Croix” and ultimately a small WW2 German gun emplacement. You will now take a steep descent down some steps into the upper part of Fliquet Bay and the path quickly goes up again towards Beauport. As the path levels off go right around the path and onto the headland. Take time to enjoy the amazing views over Beauport , St Brelade’s Bay and Ouaisne beyond, before continuing on your journey round the often narrow route through some trees and out into the car park. Keep heading through the area and you will soon see the sign pointing towards St Brelade’s church. This will lead you into a small valley, up onto some fields and eventually onto a very eroded footpath which begins the descent down towards the parish church.
Depending on the tide, you can now stride out across the beach toward Ouaisne or if the sea is against you, stroll along the promenade and over the hillside known as Le Point Grouin. Continue along the sea wall going by a Martello tower and you will reach the large car park. The next part of the walk is a bit tricky as you need to clamber over some uneven rocks and the final step onto the busted footpath is quite steep. Hopefully one day they will fix this important link between the bay and the headland above but before they do just take it slowly and you will be fine. Haul yourself up the stairs, passing by a small quarry on your right and you will reach the Portelet common headland. The temptation here is to go left and skip the circular route but you would miss a lovely headland walk and a stroll through the woodland. Whatever you decide to do the footpath turns back into a single track road and goes past the former Portelet Hotel site on the left. After the line of trees, hang a right and onto La Rue Voisin. It is just a short walk down here, past the housing development on the right and you are looking for the footpath to the left leading towards Le Portelet pub. Go through the pub car park, heading up the hill and you will see another car park. With the bay on your right, look for the cliffpath sign to Noirmont and pass through the narrow fence back onto the coastal track.
After a short distance you will see Portelet beach and the imposing tower of Janvrin’s Tomb in the centre of the bay; keep going and the German fortifications of Battery Lothringen will come into view. You now need to head towards the car park and large easterly facing gun emplacements on the skyline.
Upon reaching the headland you will be rewarded with an amazing vista across the entire south of the island with views over St Aubin, St Helier and St Clement in the distance. Keep this view on your right as you find the foot path that leads around another gun emplacement and eventually your are lead into a section of woodland. After your trek through here you will meet the main road coming up from Portelet and unfortunately there is a short section without a pavement. The road you are now looking for is Rue de Haut which leads off to the right. Be careful here as the road steepens behind Hogwarts Castle (sorry the Sommerville Hotel) and you need to walk round a hairpin bend where traffic may not initially see you as they come up the hill. The route will now drop into St Aubin’s village, which is lined with several pubs, restaurants and a very pretty harbour. Head towards the parish hall and continue down the road, keeping the building on your right . You will now join the seafront walkway which is often very busy with runners and cyclists. There are often points where the walkway and cycle route is shared so keep a look out. Keep going past the beachside cafe on the right and the public toilets and you will see a slipway going down to the beach. This lies on the border between St Brelade and St Peter and you will now need to cross the main road to the side route of La Ruelle es Ruaux which is slightly behind you on your right .
Head up this road and the lane goes round to the right behind the large cream colored flats . Bear left and brace yourself for a pull up Les Mont des Vignes, which seems to go on forever and throws in a couple of hairpin bends for good measure. Mercifully the road eventually flattens out and after a bit it becomes Rue du Francief. You will need to keep your wits about you along here as there are no pavements and traffic increases when it is joined by multiple routes coming in from the left. After about 1 1/2 km the road goes into a small valley and you can join a pavement as you start climbing the other side . Eventually you will join the main road of La Route Des Quennevais and you will see the airport on your right.
With the airport buildings in front of you, head towards the freight depots and there will be a footpath sign pointing left in front of them . Keep going past the buildings and head towards another marked signpost that leads you behind the Air Training Corps HQ and out onto Mont a La Brune. This road will start to head down into St Ouen’s bay but a more interesting route (Mont Fondan) can be found off to the right . Take this narrow lane and it will go right next to the airport taxiway and if you get lucky you may be able to see the aircraft up close. The way now veers left and starts descending down into the bay. Another breathtaking view will now be unveiled stretching from L’Etacq to the north to our final destination of La Corbiere in the south. This panorama is truly spectacular and is one of my favourites in Jersey.
As the road levels out, bear left towards the collection of granite farmhouses and left again to rejoin Mont a La Brune. Once you are around the couple of bends the road heads straight for the sea and the cafe at Le Braye. At the t-junction with Les Grande Route des Mielles (the five mile road ) you are needing to head left towards La Pulente and the headland of La Sargente in the distance. Upon reaching the pub take the path to the right and it will go around the coast , passing the German bunkers and eventually you will reach bay of Petit Port. Nip down the steps on the right, along the sea wall and up onto Mont du Grouet. For the final stretch take a right and follow the road round up the steep hill until you see the Corbiere Phare pub and radio tower. Take one last triumphant look back over the bay and then enjoy a well deserved pint toasting an adventure completed.