Walking 1004.9 miles from John O'Groats to Lands end in aid of Accommodation Concern! (starts august 3rd 2014)

Sunday, 29 August 2010

As one ends another starts!

OK mine ending is pushing the term a bit but I'll get away with it this time as I have finally handed in my lejog completion/ end to end club paper work at lands end!
Now onto one beginning........
The one mentioned is my good lady Ruth who as you can see from the pic is going to cycle to John O'Groats starting tomorrow the 29th of August, it goes without saying that she has my best wishes for her tour and all the luck in the world!
She's planning on taking about three weeks to complete where upon I will have the pleasure of re exploring my route north to pick her up from the end,only this time in the comfort of my truck!

Thursday, 15 July 2010

Congratulations Alderwood!

Having been invited to Alderwoods award ceremony I was surprised to find that it its also their tenth anniversary how time fly's congratulations to the third A Alderwood!

Thursday, 24 June 2010

Blog Maintenance

Now that the walk is done the blog is going through a lot of changes!
All of the days blogs will be tidied up! and a lot more photos will be added, so far I have just worked out the exact distance walked. by taking a day to replot my route with the excellent "Maps to GPX" website.
Our original distance was going to be about 968 miles but now even after taking a few shortcuts and allowing for     getting lost going astray whatever! our final distance walked is a whopping 1013.51 miles!!!!!!! very pleased to have broken the thousand mile mark!

all distances have also be put into a new spreadsheet and the route in google maps is also available via links in the right bar, interesting to see !

So keep an eye on us here and see what else happens!

oh i am considering a new challenge already but other than via word of mouth i'm keeping quiet about what it is!
All in good time.

Tuesday, 15 June 2010

Two of two or the end ! 15/6

Not sure what to say yet will update the end blog asap , but job done !

Ok about time this was done I think! (24/6!!!)

The day started with a quick walk into Wick where a great little Cafe allowed Alfie In!  John and I full fried breakfast later hit the road (A99) out of Wick to the road NE to Ackergillshore where as the tide was out we were able to clamber over the rocks below the pier , made a nice find here of a massive sea urchin. >

.A bit further along and Alfie nearly got an early supper of young Cormorant luckily he came away when called, and the bird just got a bit shocked!, John then put the bird into the sea where it swam out to a rock where its mother waited.
Just above the the bay is the Impressive Ackergill Tower, more of a castle really!
Here a path enables you to avoid the rocky coastline and we started to make better progress, the beach here is sublime! and next to no one else was here, for any one planning a similar route there is a river cutting through the beach into the sea but when we walked through it was only boot deep so no great problem.

Coming off of the beach at Keiss views along the coast show the impressive ruin of old Keiss castle, but as lunch called a drink was taken at the local hotel, before the A99 lead our feet for another 5 miles or so to Freswick, where the bay is fronted by the formidable Freswick house which dominates the bay.

The last hill totally obscures the view of end of the walk till the you get within the last mile or so, but i doubt anyone would be concerned as the views of the Orkneys (weather permitting) are astonishing!

John O'Groats itself is surprisingly large albeit well spread out, with the last kilometer taking you to the now boarded up Hotel where the official finish line is, Why has no one taken over this old Hotel? surely there's an investment here?, Meeting up with Ruth again here (after she had met us on the road near Freswick!) and with the end sign post photos taken, a celebratory beer was had at a hotel up the road where we met up with Chris (lejoger) who was staying at the hotel till he headed home tomorrow.

For me and Alfie a few nights in a large tent with all needs catered for Thanks Ruth!!! were bliss full tho it had to come to an end. so as promised we gave John a lift back to Stafford where he picked up his train and the M6 took us back to the midlands and home.

I suppose the question I've left unanswered is would i do it again? well the answer is certainly not no! but at the moment its not yes either!
 in time when my finances allow I may well reverse the route or find another (stirling looks good!(yes looking already!)) but for now i'm letting my knees recover they seem to be very stiff now that i'm relaxing more!, 
the feet? well i suppose i've been lucky as other than lots of silly little blisters they've been fine!.

At the start of the walk I weighed a whopping 14+ stone (ouch!) by the end I'm considerably more trim weighing in at 12.5 stone so its safe to say I lost two stone or one seventh of my body mass during this expedition, hope I can keep this weight!

Alfie has amazingly had no problems at all during the entire walk! the only thing to slow him down was hot days and a quick dunk in a river or trough soon sorted him out!.

Biggest challenge now for me is work, I dont have a lot ! so if anyone needs an Electrician................

Monday, 14 June 2010

Lybster to Wick 14/6

What can you say about a whole day spent walking on the A99 ?
I hate to say that but the most interesting part by midday was walking past some trees...... ok if I hadn't spent the last week looking at the sea that view would have been mildly interesting with its scattering of Oil rigs ,oh one inland oil well at Lybster was of passing interest tho .
The promised pub at Thrumster didn't open on mondays so I boiled some water for coffee while sitting on a rock in the pub carpark , just as it boiled J P arrived (good timing!) So both had coffee and wandererd the last miles into Wick for a soft drink then onto the wick campsite for tonights pitch.

Sunday, 13 June 2010

Badbea to lybster 13/6

A long slog today along the A9 and the A99 in a steady drizzle, the long descent into Berriedale and back out was no where near as bad as some blogs/ websites report so a better start than expected.
But as with most road walking you just spend time avoiding traffic not looking at the scenery, the coast here is all high level cliffs and expansive views of the sea (thru the rain!) To the oil fields.
Walking into Latheron Wheel the mist noticeable landmark was an arch formed by whale ribs.
Reaching Lybster we call it a day dizzy of road walking !
Can't believe its just two days walking now. already getting emotional !

Brora to Badbea 12/6

This morning saw a parting of the ways, John is very much an early morning man often walking by 6am so he started early and me and Alfie headed off at our usual 7.30.
Initially we walk thru Brora golf course where Signs warn of nesting Arctic Turns ! And so many too! Pic to follow if it came out! Also nesting were the gulls , sadly underfoot on the path ! Got past without damaging any thankfully just a wake of annoyed gulls, the north sea to our right is pancake flat with the sun sparkling on its surface , think of the north sea you think grey . Right? Wrong its just like the Mediterranean in the shallows with the brightest blue hue. Lovely day !
Passing the rocky shore south of lothbeg point we again share the coast with seals , hundreds of them ! Also the now common oyster catchers defending there nests.
Over lothbeg point and thru a campsite set in the remains of britains second world war defences, just concrete bunkers now but once the front line in our defence.
A further 4 miles of idyllic coast line we hop onto the A9 in mellow mood to stop at Helmsdales Bridge Inn , wow! So many pubs have not allowed Alfie therefore us in and now this Inn turns the tables and welcomes us with open arms ! All seating was studded leather armchairs hunting scenes and tartan tastefully displayed and just lovely staff to welcome this smelly traveller in. Go to this place its perfect.
After the great first half of the day the last stretch along the A9 for 10 km was ok made better by the fact the road was quiet weekend traffic !
Off trail to badbea the abandoned village , now just stone walls but a  good wind break for the tent !

Friday, 11 June 2010

Dornoch to Brora 11/6th

From our Dornoch wild camp on the north sea coastline our way led along a path then an abandoned railway to Embo ,passing quickly thru we keep to the railway and pass on our way the skeletal remains of Skelbo castle.
The trail goes around the sea loch Fleet where we see distant views of seals and the dread A9 !
All to soon we meet the road and spend 6 miles dodging juganaut and boy racers................. (leaving this bit blank to censor any comment about boy racers!)..........!
Entering Golspie we escape the havoc for the day, finding a nice cafe and an all day breakfast with  tea to calm the nerves, then following the coast thru tranquil pasture we find Dunrobin castle (pic) staggering architecture ! The coast to to Brora actually beats the castles beauty as we pass at least 50 seals! Got within 15 mtrs of two (pic to follow) and that was with Alfie in tow!
Dinner in a local hotels bar at Brora, then off to find a wild campsite.

Thursday, 10 June 2010

Alness wild camp to Dornoch 10/6

After a mostly comfy night camping in the woods (damn that stick!) We carry on down the road to Tain nice place but not the most dog friendly.
Taking the A9 out of town we pass the Glen Morangie distillery ( yes I made it passed without a visit! May visit on drive home ;) ) 
The A9 follows the Dornoch Firth to the river crossing (just happens to be a pub here, not open but still served us!) As you cross the bridge the very first road sign for John O'Groats tells you 85 miles to go !
On the other side with the sun breaking through to give us the first sunny day since Aviemore, we head along a B road to Dornoch, a grand town with turrets on lots of buildings , here we meet Chris Torrington another lejog nutter! Before stocking up with food and heading out to the dunes for our first seaside wild camp!

Wednesday, 9 June 2010

Dingwall to wild camp past Alness 9/6

After a huge buy one get one free meal from the pub at Dingwall station we all over slept , didn't wake up till 7.20 !
Our neighbours in the tourer made tea for us nice people!
Walking into town for bacon rolls at a cafe , then walking a B road along the Cromerty Firth to Evanton , by now 11.30 so we stopped at the Cornerstone cafe for tea and pancakes, now this place is charity run and finding out that our walks were in a good cause our elevensies were free! What's more a donation was given too ! Do stop and support this place !
Walking from Alness thru Mossfield we follow a tiny b road till we hit the woods for a nights camp

Tuesday, 8 June 2010

Inverness to Dingwall 8/6

After a lovely lazy day mostly not moving from the guest house, we meet with John (j.p) again and head off over the Moray Firth to follow a track along the southern edge of the Black Isle , saw a few big splashes in the Firth which may have been dolphin! But too distant to identify the dark shape that made the splash.
After a brief cupper at Milton we head on footpaths and roads to Conon bridge and then to Dingwall.
With tents set up on the edge of the crommerty Firth near to the Ross county football club ground who came second in the Scottish FA Cup.
We now only have 8 days left ......unbelievable!

Tomatin to Inverness 6/6

After a night of non stop rain the morning followed suit! So with grey skies and grey air! We opted for the just get today done approach , its a short day anyway so we hit the tarmac following paths along the A9 and then along the B 9154  past the Auchnahillin campsite which my original plan was to use, spoke to some long distance cyclists here and received the complement of " your Bloody hard core!" (Thanks) the road continued to Daviot via a wee suspension bridge over the river Nairn then the path crossed the A9, with no sign of the rain relenting we made a drastic accomodation change for our rest day and located a dog friendly guest house in Inverness on Google maps on the phone.
With 6 miles to walk and most of that downhill we sped along and into Inverness stopping at the castle for a while and chatting to a German girl named Kristen who was enjoying the views from the parapets too.
We then made our way to the guest house by about 3pm a nice early end to a very soggy day where Alfie made good use of the guest house bed!

Sunday, 6 June 2010

Aviemore to Tomatin 5/6

A day of flirting with the last great obstacle , the dreaded A9 !!! Gonna see far to much of this road soon but at least today we can dodge it!
Leaving Aviemore we road walk to the A9 and follow its flanks for 200 yards or so before we head into forestry commission land aka the world of the wood ant every step you see hundreds of these industrious insects , hate to think how many I squashed! .
The woodland quickly changes from logging to wildfowl as lots of signs warn of the area being an important Capercaile breeding area, sorry didn't see one tho.
Now walking another military road we have a far better surface than near Aberfeldy thank goodness ! With as we pass Carrbridge an impressive old bridge at Sluggan (pic to follow) leaving the woods at Sloched we follow the old A9 now a cycle path till we head into Tomatin. Didn't expect much in facilities here so was pleased to find a little shop behind the now closed Inn even got a hot coffee here so very happy !
We are pitched just in town in a stretch of woodland on a track near the distillery , don't know which one yet so close and we have a dry night!

Friday, 4 June 2010

Chest of Dee to Aviemore

First off an omission from yesterday , a chap named Hugh Boyd donated to the charity and tonight the Williams family did too! Thanks to all !
The nights here are nearly not happening ! At 1.30am the sky was a deep blue but by 3am the sky was brighter so does it get really dark? I'm not planning on being awake to find out!
Our usual 7.30 start and we race off along glen Dee the river drops down a series of small falls and rapids with a Greeny blue hue to the water ,the water all along here is melt from the snow above and as such is excellent drinking water , so sweet!
Rounding Sgor Mor a low mountain we get ever expanding views of towards the Lairig Ghru which I can't believe is an old drove road ! The dominant landmark at this stage is the Devils Point a shear buttress of rock towering over Glens Geusachen and Dee left of pic.
On past Cairn Toul on our left and Ben Macdui on our right both around 3900 feet we have to ford deeply flowing streams swollen with melted snow Alfie does admirably for his small stature !
Up into the boulder field of the Lairig Ghru we find ourselves floundering over the still deep remnants of the winters snows, treacherously with the tributarys of river Dee rushing beneath our feet , keeping to the edge of the snows we pass beneath the  Cairn Lochan and Braeriach ranges to either side.
Down and out of the mountains we are swallowed by the Rothimurchus forest with a hot humid change from the cold winds of the tops.
Into Aviemore for a campsite for the night and the first pizza for two months ! Lovely! 

Blair Athol to Chest of Dee 3/6

Having been pushing it for the last few days to get to the Cairngorms while the forcast good weather held (nearly made up a days walk!) Our efforts have paid off! Perfect blue skys sunny and a cool wind, a bit too hot at 28 deg C ! But so nice!
The walk starts on the trail thru Blairauchdar wood with signs warning of a precipitous drop to our right, as warned the path rises and the river Tilt disapears into the woods below us, we soon meet the river again as we head up the gently sloping Glenn Tilt.
Passing a house called Marble Lodge the glen opens up before us to reveal a staggering sheer sided valley rising up to 2500 feet (approx) on either side! As we sit and marvel another incredible sight meets us as a Euro Fighter jet thunders down the valley and over our heads! The first of four jets to do so today, the trail becomes a footpath under the towering flanks of Dun Beag and in the midday heat we find to our left the lovely falls of Tarf (pic to follow) Alfie's straight in for a cooling paddle and I dip my feet into the freezing river, so nice! The path winds up and down the steep sides of Alt Garbh Buidhe and around the edge of a boggy area of water catchment from the surrounding hillsides, after fording some large streams we get to Geldie Burn now in wetter times this would cause huge problems crossing but for me it was on with the gaiters and start wading it still came up to just below my knee ,and even so I only got one wet foot, happy with that!.
With gobsmacking views of Cairn Toul and Ben Macdui to our left both snow capped, we set up camp at the Chest of Dee (by white bridge) , the path tomorrow goes between these two mountains via the Lairig Ghru sadly a hill in front obscures this so tomorrows callenge still remains a mystery!

Wednesday, 2 June 2010

Aberfeldy to Blair Athol 2/6

From our amazing wild(ish) campsite we descended into Aberfeldy for provisions and a quick look about, glad we did as this town is the place where clan chiefs loyal to the English/British  crown gathered troops to form the Highland watch now known as the Black Watch! To keep clans loyal to the Scottish crown in check.
The B road (again!) To Strathtay meanders along the Tay valley sadly on the opposite bank of the river to the Dewars distillery :( , with high hills either side the view is never dull, and upon reaching Strathtay a quick ice cream powers us up and over the hill to Pitlochry in the next valley over a pub lunch and we head west towards Killiekrankie (oh jimmy where are you now? Tee hee!) Along the lovely Loch Faskally through well tended woodland paths with sunlight now making the leaves glow! A lovely sight.
The path does run out at killiekrankie and we have a couple more hours on the road to Blair Athol a scenic village at the foot of Glenn Tilt where we will head into the wonders of the Cairngorms! If you don't here from us for a few days don't worry, we're heading into the wilds!  Woooohooooo!

Perth to Aberfeldy 1/6

Before I start to go on about today I'm just gonna break a mould I  know that my pet hate seems to be cities but things change ok?
Having had a rest day at Perth with all the usual camp chores finished ie repairs and washing we caught a bus into town on a sunny bankholiday Monday to find ourselves enjoying a quiet but still busy centre, no graffiti , tidy streets and a really pleasing vibe to the place! Plenty of parks and an old but well designed layout to the road system with grand buildings on all sides, you can really tell this used to be a capital city and that its still loved!
The campsite we stayed on had an equally nice vibe the place was spotless the two wardens couldn't do enough for you and it seemed that by the time we left everyone knew us by name with beers being given to us and our neighbours who left while we were in town left us a nice bucket barbie to cook on (sadly left this on site!) Oh the site is called "Noahs Ark" no idea why tho!.
After yesterdays sunshine todays drizzle is a shame but it is better walking weather.
So a stretch of footpath out of the site led us to a hop over the A85 into Almond Bank then into the pretty village of Pitcairngreen with its huge village green, from here a long long stretch of road walking through farmland past the usual animals and peacock with their haunting cries, to reach a turn onto single track road that runs parallel with Shochie Burn (great name!) This turns into a rutted track up Glen Shee for our first real taste of rough mountains ,tho the Scott's call them hills!, down and back onto roads towards Aberfeldy we pass our planned nights stop at 2pm so carrying on road walking we join one of General wades military roads by a land mark known as white cairn (of which there's neither s cairn or anything white!) The old road (dirt track) soon entered woodland where it degenerated into gooey squelchy bog....not easy or pleasant trust me! After two hours of this we leave the road(!?) Over a 12 foot high deer proof stile and hit tarmac walking past Loch na Craige a sign post pointed to a view point where we set up camp, with the sun setting we had a most spectacular view of the Cairngorms and nearer ranges, (names to follow and pic)

Monday, 31 May 2010

Kinross to Perth

Thought:- the Scottish right to roam seems to me to be a very clever way to stop people wandering, by law you can walk in most places in practice its just not possible what's the point of walking a field if its a battle to cross into the next with no garentee that you can get anywhere if you do !. Grrr
Rant over!
Out of Kinross and by main road (there do seem to be lots of paths along main roads very handy) to Milnathort and with views back over loch Leven and its surrounding hills we take B roads to Glenfarg , a notice board in town mentions that we are now as far north as Moscow ! Thankfully making better progress to this latitude than Napoleon managed!.
At this point it rains some more but really not bothered by rain anymore !
For a short two kilometers we get off road to take the Wallace road (path) over Dron hill to Bridge of Earn , arriving at lunch time alfie works his magic again and gets entry into s posh little restaurant called "The Roost" an excellent three course meal of a great vegetable soup , and shoulder of lamb presented better than I've seen and with good size portions ! Followed by a white chocolate cheese cake with mango and clementine topping , sublime! .
Amazingly this cost only 18 pounds with a pot of tea! I can't recommend this place enough!.
Spirits now on a high we walked the wide pavement along the A912 to Craigend where a footpath past fields of pigs and pigglets went over Kirkton hill and via a foot bridge over the M90 to present us with magnificent views of Perth and the snow capped cairngorm mountains which we will soon pass through.
Downhill through Buckie Braes a maze of twisting footpaths and into the suburbs of Perth and to Noahs ark caravan park for a pitch of two days with lots of rest ! Ahhhh!

Saturday, 29 May 2010

North Queensferry to Kinross

Up nice and promptly with only a slightly thick head from last nights wine, and we are off leaving the costal path, very quickly we get lost in the suburbs while looking lost a chap named Patrick and his son Jack gave us directions, following these we nearly get arrested by saying four words " does Gordon live here?" Yep we'd found the ex prime ministers house! The armed guards were quick to move us on! Oh and the big black cameras were sure to have filmed our little brush with politics!
As we left town a car screeched to a halt in front of us, thankfully not the police but Patrick and Jack again with some food and a 20 pound donation ! .
This next section of the walk was allways going to be a bit too practical rather than pleasant and apart from a good chin wag with my sis during morning break , it lived up to this this was until we reached Kings Seat , here the planned path was along an old railway then via a forest road to Kelty it didn't quite work out, the railway was almost impassable but stuborn me got through , then on the forest road we came to a no entry sign , now with Scottish rights to roam this normally means no entry to vehicles so we climbed over and carried on the path and the forest quickly vanished to become a working, open mine, with one kilometer to go I wasn't turning back thinking it would be shut on a Saturday ......wrong! Luckily not a day for explosions! And as we reached the exit (passing a supervised area sign and cctv camera oops!) we made good our exit passed workers leaving for the weekend! Some odd looks came in our direction understandably !
Going into Kelty you can really see that this is a mining town the place felt hard as nails ! So we got out quickly, in doing so we met a chap named Bill (i think, sorry if I'm wrong!)  really friendly and interesting conversation.
Carrying onwards towards Kinross once again the plan went awry where we hoped to walk an abandoned railway again this time it was impassable so we stayed on the road for a foot crunching 8 kilometres, along here Bill passed in his car beeping and waving hello! Cheered up a tough bit of walking thanks.
Camp for tonight is at Gallowhill farm just west of Kinross.

Carlops to North Queensferry 29/5

A late start of 8.45 was nice especially with a full fry up inside ,we left our refuge from the storm and set of in bright sunshine up into the pentland hills.
A nice easy stretch of hill walking through curvacious hills then down again into Buteland , quite heavily populated area this with our path heading into wilkieston we set of along the road to newbridge pleasantly there was a pavement all the way. Passing over the M8 we followed an abandoned railway (pleasently rural!) to Queensferry accross the maginficent Forth road bridge and into North Queensferry a pub meal later, we tried our luck with a not so wild camp 2 minutes walk out of town.
Luck was really on our side here wuth stunning views of the Forth rail bridge we set up camp, to be greated by a local Jeremy Hawkins who mentioned that our pitch was an old barrage ballon site used to protect the railbridge in WW2.
Now Jeremy is a really top chap he returned later with a bottle of wine which we sat and drank looking over the Firth of Forth, as Jeremy told of local places of interest.

Innerleithen to Carlops 27/5

Setting of through the early morning activities of Innerleithen, we walk down to the river path along the tweed, after a bit of hair raising road walking we enter the golfing village of Cardrona where the old railway station has been converted into a shop/cafe never one to pass a feeding opportunity, tea and a cheese toastie boosted our breakfast, talking to Linda the owner it seems that J.P also stopped here.
Passed the ruin of Horsbrugh castle a stretch of woodland had been cleared and an odd youth art/village had been constructed.
Briefly into peebles for provisions then out again to Hamilton hill , with mountains around us we descend to an old drove road which takes us along Eddleston valley.
With huge banks of black cloud scudding towards us ,threatening and then delivering our first soaking of the entire walk we drag our soggy selves into the hotel at carlops where we were able to get a room (dog too ! ) and a meal to end the day .

Thursday, 27 May 2010

Melrose to Innerleithen 26/5

Out of Melrose we took a more direct route than planned avoiding Galashiels with a back road uphill through farmland to a path marked on the map sadly not marked on the ground! Out comes the gps and we follow as best we can till a barbed wire fence beats us and we divert around a section of woodland and on to a b road descending back into the Tweed valley , crossing the river via the A707 bridge we pick up a river walk not marked on the map saving 2 miles of road walking, over the bridge towards Yair we pass the high road of the southern upland way (walked this in 2000) to follow a combination of tracks and tiny b roads into Innerleithen campsite.

Jedburgh to Melrose 25/5

After a peaceful rest day in Jedburgh we are on our own again John (j.p) has carried on with his route and our best wishes go with him , has been great listening to johns knowledge of fauna and flora, see you on the east coast mate!.
Walking north out of town we take a route signed the Dere street dash, very handy as after 2 kilometres we're back on said Roman road ,sort of the path winds it way along the banks of the river teviot to an impressive looking suspension bridge think this needs some repair as it bounces and sways alarmingly! Both relieved to reach the other side!.
Still winding on the path goes through the wooded grounds of Monteviot house where the route finally straightens out on its proper NW bearing over Ancrum moor the site of English / Scottish battles and the Lilliard stone where both sides came to make peace at various times.
Walking into St Boswells we followed the river Tweed , up into newtown st boswells to Eildon and between the major peaks of the Eildon hills for a panoramic view to the rear back to the Cheviot and to front over Melrose where after a brief descent we stopped for the night .

Monday, 24 May 2010

Byrness to Jedburgh 23/5th

After getting a DIY breakfast from the Youth Hostels honesty shop (love this trust in folk) of macaroni cheese ,high carbohydrate start to the day we set off in persuit of the Aussies who had 15 minute headstart on us ,the path soon became serious with an at least 45 degree ascent up Houx hill to about 1100 feet, there it levels out to a more managable path over "ravens know" and around to Chew green an old Roman border camp, with the blue sky and gentle breeze the walking is ideal.
With Dere street (a Roman road) underfoot we said our farewells to the Aussies who sang there goodbye to us as we crossed the border, sweet people :)
The Roman road now a slight path ran precipitously round Blackhall hill to leave us with a breathtaking view of Watch know and in the valley an inapproprietly  named farm called street house.....no street in sight!.
Down hill and out of the cheviot proper we forded a shallow river , past another Roman camp which we couldn't see, the path then keeping to Dere street followed the top of more linked hills past the five stanes stone circle, an old iron age hill fort (plenty of these around here!) To then join with a country road to then leave Dere street at a farm named Shotheids (found this name funny with a liberal abuse of the Scottish accent!) Roads all the way to Jedburgh (with a scarecrow competition in evidence) and we followed a path into the middle of town with views of the imposing ruin of Jedburgh cathedral. With a pub meal inside us J.P. Alfie and I settled into the pretty little campsite at the north of town, where J.P. will carry on with his trek as Alfie and I take another rest day.

The Boarder crossing into Scotland


Saturday, 22 May 2010

Bellingham to Byrness 22/5th

With Alfie getting free breakfast from a group of squadies of sausage and Bacon (lucky chap) we and J.P hit the local bakery for breakfast before heading off north out of town for an uphill route to allow us to sit on the hill and watch the Aussies walk up hill to join us on our moorland ridgeway walk to paddon hill then down to the boggy vale below it , catching our breath we had another walker pass us with a quick hello , this chap turned out to be another lejoger named Tommy Allan walking for help for heroes (pic).
The walk today then went downhill through forestry commission roads into Byrness valley then following the pretty river walk passed the church to the now closed "last cafe in England" now no more sadly, but as the Aussies were booked into the youth hostel we followed along, now this hostel is no longer in the Yha but it certainly benefits from this with a much greater understanding of walkers needs, with a two course meal for 8 quid and amazingly an honesty shop with everything you need . A supurb stop called "Forest view"

Friday, 21 May 2010

Twice brewed to Bellingham

Up today for a fryup at 8.00am with a surprise visitor, J.P. of lejogplod fame!  
Finally got too meet after walking 40 days ! J.P started the day after us and our paths never crossed till now!
Breakfast inside from the campsite cafe we went via road through Hadrians wall and with more great views we followed farm tracks through the hilly land north of the wall, then into forestry land for about 5 miles were we met a group of Aussies that J.P had met before, lovely group who donated to our cause! Walked all day with them and I could repay there generosity by route finding.
Regular pennine way route to Bellingham and now off for dinner with the gang!

Thursday, 20 May 2010

Alston to Twice brewed 20/5th

A day of relative ease walking along the South tyne way a semi abandoned railway all the way to Haltwhistle, as flat as you could want , just shut down the brain and leave the feet too it!
Pretty views all the way until we reach the Lambley viaduct which along with the old railway enabled mines further up in the pennines to deliver ore to Newcastle and carlisle until it was shut down in 1976, the viaduct is spectacular with beautiful views over the valley as you pass above .
Not long after this I meet Pat and her two dogs going in the direction of the viaduct. after lunch we meet again and walk together to Haltwhistle the center of Great Britain (see pic)(tho some might argue that) I must thank Pat here as she offered a cup of tea, if we had time, after a trip for provisions. Sadly time forced us to push on to twice brewed to set up camp at Windhield campsite near Hadrians wall.

Dufton to Alston 19/5th

Once again today we dodge the pennine way route and save a few miles of walking and ascent , a valley walk through Knock , Milburn and Kirkland past the seemingly none existant "hanging walls of mark Anthony" and up the fell following the Roman road the maiden way don't think the Romans would be too impressed by the state of it seems to have been used as a mining track most recently with a small gauge rail track now rusting away (pic to follow).
after the end of the three kilometer ascent to 1800 feet and Megs cairn on the shoulder of Melmerby Fell, we are just below the clouds with a cool windy descent over moor land to the Alston road where dodging cars for a few miles we take the longer but safer B road to Alston. ( pic of Alston cross and church)
After setting up the tent at the local site we go for dinner at the Cumberland pub for dinner along with two ladies Lynda and Karen who are walking the pennine way (pic to follow) and also camping at the same site.

Tuesday, 18 May 2010

Kirkby Stephen to Dufton 18/5

My original idea was to regain energy on rest days but after mondays horizontal day with book I was unable to sleep properly! Come morning I was shattered, walked into town got provisions and stumbled on my way had to have my first rest after one hour!
Still the weather was beautiful and going along the Eden Valley was easy enough.
My route has changed from plan to miss Appleby and head to Coupland where I bought new boots at the Penrith outdoor and survival center ( see pic) the old ones heels had worn badly and were causing knee and ligament pain, sad to just bin the old ones but I'm sure not carrying them too!
Just before the boot stop we stopped at a little chef for the Knicker bocker glory of the previous blog!.
The route change sent us through some pretty almost park land with stunning views of the snow capped cross fell with woodland and a carpet of blue bells just in full bloom.
Further on followed a track into Dufton via Dufton gill wood very pretty with the low sun making the fresh spring leaves glow while glinting off of the stream.
With the tent up (with the help of a little lad named Andrew who must have been really short of things to do!) we went to the Stag(ger(I know its a bad pun ok!)) Inn where during dinner lejogers Peter and Chris walked in (last seen in Launceston) sadly I was too tired to hang around for much of chat and hope to see them tomorrow in Alston. Funny how you meet up with people who take very different routes.

Kirkby Stephen to Dufton 18/5

My original idea was to regain energy on rest days but after mondays horizontal day with book I was unable to sleep properly! Come morning I was shattered, walked into town got provisions and stumbled on my way had to have my first rest after one hour!
Still the weather was beautiful and going along the Eden Valley was easy enough.
My route has changed from plan to miss Appleby and head to Coupland where I bought new boots at the Penrith outdoor and survival center ( see pic) the old ones heels had worn badly and were causing knee and ligament pain, sad to just bin the old ones but I'm sure not carrying them too!
Just before the boot stop we stopped at a little chef for the Knicker bocker glory of the previous blog!.
The route change sent us through some pretty almost park land with stunning views of the snow capped cross fell with woodland and a carpet of blue bells just in full bloom.
Further on followed a track into Dufton via Dufton gill wood very pretty with the low sun making the fresh spring leaves glow while glinting off of the stream.
With the tent up (with the help of a little lad named Andrew who must have been really short of things to do!) we went to the Stag(ger(I know its a bad pun ok!)) Inn where during dinner lejogers Peter and Chris walked in (last seen in Launceston) sadly I was too tired to hang around for much of chat and hope to see them tomorrow in Alston. Funny how you meet up with people who take very different routes.

Mini blog. For family

For this one I didn't need extra cusions!

Monday, 17 May 2010

Garsdale head to Kirkby Stephen

After the luxuries of my B&B stop and a great full English breakfast we had the additional luxury of a short 10 mile down hill route to kirkby Stephen , starting off staying on the road we made good time following the railway and crossing over a few times then diverting from the easier road to avoid a cycle road race we followed a path promising two castles enroute the first Pendragon castle I think would have disappointed its name sake as it is far from in its days of glory! But still worth a visit with more time to stop, the second (see pic) Lammerside castle seems to be abandoned with more sheep (sorry lamb pun) visiting than people.
From here it was a simple stroll past Wharton hall (also half ruined!) Into our campsite and an early finish with a day off on Monday to follow.

Sunday, 16 May 2010

Horton to Garsdale head 15 th May

After having fallen asleep to a noisy bustling campsite the noise started again at 5.30am now I'm an early riser but this commotion meant something big was about to happen, looking out the tent the half full site of last night was packed, with no spare room anywhere , the penny dropped as hoards of walkers streamed by the site to Pen y Ghent a peak towering over us to the east, we were in the midst of a three peaks challenge ! As we headed off, the flow of walkers still hadn't diminished and coaches were bringing more folk in, feel sorry for the locals if this is a regular Saturday ! 
Our path lay north so we didn't see the flood of walkers for a while.
As we had left about the same time and as the Ribble and Pennine ways shared the same path we walked out of the village with Steve the Aussie lejoger ,2 kilometers out of town we parted company and Alfie and I had the valley side walk to ourselves (and the sheep) the path wobbled up and down to gearstones outdoors center (named after a rock formation nearby) at this point I really regretted missing a fryup at the Horton cafe as my energy levels plummeted , thank god I bought a pack of jelly babies to munch on! Up over gale moor and down into the next valley we were treated to stunning views of the railway with huge viaducts spanning the undulating hillside (pic to follow).
We made the right decision to go into the valley as at the bottom the Sportsman pub was open for lunch! Another lovely person , the landlady, donated 10 pounds (thankyou) .
Now with every down comes an up and the road out of the valley was STEEP! 4 miles of steep gradients up and down and we reached garsdale head and the moorcock pub , sitting next to the pub was a B&B with vacancies......say no more but the shower was great and the bed soft (eh Alfie!)

Friday, 14 May 2010

near Holton West to Horton in Ribblesdale

After a successful wild camp ( ie the farmer didn't find us! ) we headed for our first section of the Ribble way a pleasingly flat ten miles along the river valley the trail takes its name from quite uneventful , we then reached Settle for a rations restock where as we packed the rucksack an anonymous lady donated 10 pounds to the charity!
Then into the talbot inn for a pint and a jacket spud for lunch.
With cracking views of the local fells we arrived early at our campsite and to reach our official half way point !
On arrival at my favourite eccentric campsite we are invited into the reception marquee, and given a fine single malt whisky and offer of soup.....very nice too! Also in the marquee was another lejoger named Steve this one from Australia ( see pic ) another friend for Alfie :) 

Ponden to near Halton West

After a night kept awake by the freezing temperature we had the additional pleasure of the only other camper on site insisting on coming over to chat in just his underwear.........thanks......
After a hasty exit, we headed up onto Icornshaw moor in quite sunny conditions that we both seemed to tired to appreciate, a long slog on b roads to Earby for food and we headed out to West Marton where a little tea shop ( shock not beer! ) fullfilled a growing need for a good cuppa, another donation wad received here, thanks Margret and Ruth.
Finally the route took us through poorly way marked but picturesque rolling farmland to our wild camp for the night.

Wednesday, 12 May 2010

white house Inn to Ponden

After a breezey night next to the Inn we walked in a northerly direction past three reservoir presumably for the Rotherham area which had been casting a sodium glare over the tent all night, why do we need so many lights at three in the morning? Grr!.
The path curved eastwards passed the stoodley pike monument to head downhill into the verticle town of Hebden Bridge built on the nearly sheer sides of the Calder valley, I wasn't aware as I descended that this place is the Glastonbury of the north! Tho with a far more sensible and less trashy northern approach (Nora Batty may have approved!).
the path north out of town led through a place called Midgehole which happily didn't live up too its name, along the crimson dean valley we met Dan who had started his own lejog almost 24 years earlier than our start and was still easily keeping pace with us! , we parted company near Drop farm and within half a mile our path disapeared and we were officially lost, our path turned up about a quarter mile east of where we wanted it ! But at least the upside of getting lost was we turned up at the Silent Inn just as they started to serve an early bird menu, very much recommend this place all oak beams and dog friendly to boot!.
This is being typed in the pub so our next stop at ponden house campsite is still ahead......hope its not closed down!

Crowden to The White House Inn 11,5th

An eventful day kicked off at 8.45 with the pretty walk up hill under laddaw rocks to the path up to the top of Black hill. at the top the view was the best I've had from this point on any of my earlier walks a good ten miles and perhaps as far as Newcastle, the descent was painful for darrell as he seems to have jarred his knees badly obviously slowed by this when we descended into Marsden he made the brave decision to catch a train home rather than push on and slow our progress, don't know if I could have made such s tough decision , cheers mate!.
Now on our own Alfie and I headed uphill to Denshaw moor and rejoined the pennine way to pass over the M62 JP to the top of blackstone edge, passed the Aiggin stone ( a medieval sign post! ) and down to the White house Inn sadly another dog unfriendly pub so we set up camp nearby and supplied our own dinner pilau rice and ham ......yummy......

Tuesday, 11 May 2010

Edale to Crowden 10th of may (sis)

Todays route is one I don't need the maps for. its day one of the pennine way , a route I've walked twice now  a grand and still quite challenging walk, but now I have company my old mate of 29 years darrell, daz, monkey (he has many names!) Has joined the walk for a week and is trying out his new marquee oops sorry Tarp ! To sleep under, think we prefere the tent!.
Anyway back to the walk a brisk gentle climb out of Edale takes us to the foot of Jacobs ladder on a cold morning and the steep climb up to Kinder scout's top with threatening clouds around us.... the threat didn't last long as it became a full scale snow storm ! With temperatures dropping to -7 degrees celcius and a strong winds blowing in from the northeast we flew around the top of the plateau past the wind blasted granite formations and down then up to Mill hill to head into the storm towards snake pass and then as we ascended Bleaklow head the snow stopped and we found a dry peat hag to sit against for lunch, topping the hill we took the old western route from the summit to curve around the precipitous Clough edge and down to the Crowden campsite for the night.

Coopers cafe

Another thankyou blog to Coopers cafe at Edale who gave me free rolls when they were told what we're up to, the cafes under new management and best of luck to them and again thanks!

Hello chicken!

Just a quick thankyou blog for Natalie , Jocelyn,Peter and Gareth who I met at the Nags Head and had a very silly afternoon with, thanks for the drinks peeps.
Some more people I class as lovely!

Monday, 10 May 2010

Bushy heath to Edale

A short day today just 7 miles of walking to join up with the start of the pennine way which we will be using and abusing as suites us for the next 12 days cutting out unneeded sections and adding bits as suits us.
But today was a simple hike to castleton via the impressive gorge passed the ruined castle into the town for a good fryup and to restock Alfie's food for the next three days ( seems to like bakers complete ! ).
Headed out of town and over the hills via hollins cross in cold wind with grey skies and threats of rain, entering Edale the skys were black with the threat but held off till they'd left the valley (unlike last night when the tent had been put thru its paces (unintentional pun)).
Now warm and snug in the nags head pub , with food to order and all rest day chores done, may go for a relaxing walk tomorrow .............right !

Alstonefield to Bushyheath farm

The start for today was a brisk walk down a short lane followed by an abrupt and steep descent into Wolfscote dale and Biggin dale not as impressive as dovedale but very pleasing to pass thru, onto heathcote where I had a brief chat with some locals about geese and moorhens in a protected pond which they fed regularly.
Hopping down an embankment we walked along a converted railway track in freezing north easterly winds to the cafe adjacent to the road to Monyash mid Bacon roll we met Steve Clifford of end to end in 2010 fame (pic to follow) nice chap hope to meet up again!
Bit of road walking which I seem to like these days ?!!! To monyash then overlooking Taddington we descended sharply into Millers dale and just as sharply back out the other side! Now enjoying some sunshine we walked pleasant lanes and cross country to tideswell for a provisions stop and then up hill to our campsite at Bushyheath farm, all alone on this windy night but a very pleasing site with very green credentials.

Doveridge to Alstonefield

After leaving the campsite without paying ! No one there not our problem really.... we had a mornings walk very much looking to the horizon , with initial scenery quite normal to home we kept our beadey eyes on the hills ahead and the peak district , passing Rocester we picked up the route of the Limestone way and followed paths and roads to Thorpe and the start of Dovedale having not walked Thu here before I was impressed by the dramatic changes of view along the dale from charming river views to impressive caves at Dove holes (pic), too soon we reached Milldale and followed a steep road to Alstonefield settling into our campsite modestly priced at 4 pounds with reasonable facilities , we headed for dinner to the George Inn , very cosy and friendy to dogs and all. dinner was expensive but excellent duck shared with Alfie !

Cannock Chase to Doveridge

After a comfy night spent on the Chase where the rabbits had done a wonderful job of keeping a soft base for the tent ! We walked the forestry paths to Rugeley, for a cracking full English breakfast and to pick up more supplies, friendly folk in town very accepting of this smelly pair of wanderers, after we said what we were up too!.
Headed thru Colton and the unsignposted Stockwell Heath to stumble thru cattle fields fast becoming my worst underfoot surface! Better footing took us over the Blithfield reservoir dam to be assailed by a blizzard of mosquitos, I've never seen so many had to cover my mouth to prevent overdosing on protein and who knows what else!.
Into Abbots Bromley and dinner at the Baggot pub great place nice cheap food and entertainment from two locals ( mark and len) both pensioners who'd known each other for 20 years and had yet to settle their political differences, one Tory one labour but great friends despite the antagonism they relished !.
Some standard and uneventful walking thru fields bought us to Uttoxeter and a supply stop at Tesco only to find our path out of town obstructed by the industrial estate the path appeared to go through, a little imaginative trail blazing (ahem!) saw us taking a path over a much underused but pretty little suspension bridge into Doveridge and our abandoned campsite.....
For once Alfie's charms failed to get us both entry into the Cavendish pub so a quick pint and back to the tent to sleep.

Wombourne to Cannock Chase

The last section of canal walking today so farewell to level walking!
The route through wolverhampton i'd anticipated as being very industrial and to my great satisfaction it was'nt, other than the bridges overhead being busy with traffic and some major railway bridges with some great graffiti (pic to follow) you wouldn't have known you were in a major city! Well done to the local council for keeping it clean! .
Coming into the small canal intersection (?) Of cross green we met Adrian and sue who donated to our charity and also offered a place to stay near hebdon bridge , sadly a mid day point for us.
At Calf heath we an old chap looking to see the state of the local rabbits, plans for dinner I think !
Roads saw us to Huntington where I finally got my first stamp for the transit verification form the end to end club issue!.
Into the woods of the Chase we headed and made our first major mistake en route by simply turning right as the path hit the road than seeing that the route was right at a road junction slightly to our left ! Nearly a kilometer later as we saw a town ahead rather than the anticipated pub re routing was inorder (after a little swearing!) . A zigzaging route through more woodland took us to the pub and a major dissapointment as the pub was now a Baptist bible college ..... I had to walk right around the building before I could fully believe it! Baptists in a pub whatever next!
Thankfully we had enough food so pitched tent at our planned spot and slipped into sleep.

Tuesday, 4 May 2010

Bewdley to Wombourne

After a lovely 2 days off with Ruth  (sporty forties) and a fortifing fried breakfast we left our little bit of heaven and walked down into a quiet bank holiday Bewdley and once more onto the Severn way for the last time,

some lovely graffiti under a bridge on the severn
 quickly finishing this stretch we headed into Eymore wood and picked up the Worcester way through some hilly farm land to drakelow and then up onto Kinver edge, good views to left and right with plenty of dogs for the rejuvenated alfie to have a go at ....! A good viewpoint at the end of the edge over Kinver and down we went to look at St Austins rock this turned out to be St Austins rock houses all cut into the sandstone rock in true troglodyte fashion.
St Austins Rock houses and gardens

Walked into Kinver and food bought for a quick picnic on the Staffordshire and Worcestershire canal. pleasant plod along here with heron robins and a multitude of unidentified birds and the now normal odour of wild garlic coming into flower ,past Stourton we passed what is called on my map "Devils den" sadly unenlightened as to quite what this is other than seeing a door set into a cliff face at canal water level ......?.
Stopped for a drink at the pub at greensforge ,we had been passed by a family of cyclists with 2 more border terriers earlier  and met them again here where they ( the Mc Arthies) very kindly donated 20 pounds to the charity.

A push along the canal and we reached our Target wild camp for the night where the new tent was erected thanks to Ruth for sorting out our new tent! Which if JP of lejogplod ever see's it will find very familiar minus the cow hoof prints tho eh JP !     

Sunday, 2 May 2010

Worcester to Bewdley

Today was a great day, at the start all of yesterdays problems were behind us (sorry!) And as the sun shone down we headed into Worcester, we lost our way slightly navigating the docks but as it had all been modernised sympathetically it was a pleasant maze to fathom.

Stopping near the catherdral a cappuccino and baguette was purchased at a posh cafe where I mentioned what we were doing (to explain our less than normal appearance) to a waitress who explained that she had just completed the Three peaks challenge of snowden,Ben Nevis and Scafell pike , she seemed impressed that I mentioned that I thought it was beyond my capability, nice to leave a smile on a strangers face !.
Back on the banks of the river we left Worcester behind on what is my favourite part of the Severn way I'm sure the sunshine had a lot to do with it but the whole section was untainted by constructions and even had a field set aside as a retreat for contemplation and rest , following this we walked through the grounds of the Camp house pub with its collection of chickens of various breeds and peacocks and peahens, a most charmingly eclectic pub which if I had known of its existence I would have enjoyed stopping at !

Further on we past an archeological survey taking place on an island in the middle of the river, other advocates of time team would've also recognized a geo phys survey. sadly didn't find out what they were looking for as the survey was at too early a stage.
Away from the river at Grimley and cross country for refreshment at the Holt Fleet pub, the river here and for sometime onwards has cute little wooden homes/shacks which I found charming in an isolated way, the path enters Stourport through more dockyards and small fairground.

Our way headed out of town towards Ribbesford woods where we met two fellow  lejogers this time cyclists Paul and Dan nice to add a pair of new faces to the nutters gallery.

The path into the woods had been obliterated by a motorcross course luckily shut down for the day, then on into the woods over steep hill and finally to Hoppleys campsite for a two day stop to meet up with Ruth my better half.
Back on the blog Monday.

Wainlode hill to worcestor

A nice early 7.30 start and we were away before the lads from London stired, would have been nice to say farewell as they were a great bunch of lads.
We kept to the Severn way on the east bank,(tho my map shows it on the west?)  Had breakfast of a pastie from my pack and plodded through the fields to tewksbury, pretty town worth another visit one day , had a great value/quality all day breakfast at a cafe where we were both allowed in, nice to eat without worrying about alfie.

 The route out of town took us past st johns castle tho we were to busy clambering over the small landslide on the path to notice it!
The way threaded through thick grass with clouds of mozzies at every step as we reached the M50 things went wrong, either the breakfast or the pastie was to blame but drastic action was required.

M50 another under bridge view!
As things continued to grumble away we hit a section of path zigzaging through a farm and sand/gravel pit which in my state was confusing and irritating to say the least and as the rain also started to fall we hit the A38 at Severn stoke all the way to our campsite on the ringroad of worcester.   
Still after a day such as it was we had completed our 20 miles planned and continued to keep to plan, seems to take a lot to stop us in our tracks.

Wednesday, 28 April 2010

Sheperds Patch to Wainlode hill ( a magical place!)

A great day! We raised 42 pounds from complete strangers without asking once! the rollcall of honour
Sandra & heinz,the crew of the barge Flossie,Richard Bond,Dave & Jenny,Lynn,and the landlord of the red lion at wainlode who returned our camping fee of 10 pounds upon hearing what we are doing! Thank you all!.
The walk itself was along the gloucester and sharpness canal passing many odd what I assume to be canal bridge houses with Corinthian columns and a general Greek look about them,
                                                         (one of the prettier ones!)
entered gloucester and resupplied the dog food , promptly leaving town again ( I'm sure gloucester is nice just didn't get a feel for the place )
Bit confusing finding the way out as my maps are a little out of date I'm sure I didn't plan to walk along the bypass!
Finally  finding the path I met three lads with full packs about to head north along the Severn too , but left them to finish discussing the route, we opted for an inland route about 2 kilometres shorter than the Severn way, taking us over a hill with great views to the malverns and more importantly to the pub and campsite at wainlode.
setting up tent we had our second pole disaster as the main pole snapped again! Now making do with my walking pole holding the tent up, works quite well and as s new tent is being bought out by my missus at the weekend its no great problem (see pic above) .
Having repaired our shelter we sat at the front if the pub eating lamb shank (alfie got the bone) and watching an amazing sky not too sure what made the sky so great (beer maybe ?) But it kept me fascinated !

The three lads I'd met in gloucester arrived we sat supping the local ale and chatted away, as the sun finally set some cars pulled up with huge nets on they're rooves after much speculation the landlord clarified that the men where fishing for elver (young eel) which will be exported to Hong Kong!

Severn bridge to shepherds patch

As I write this blog o have a small ball of ginger fur named Alfie hogging my sleeping bag! Not sure what's wrong with his ! Cute tho .
Today we woke to a thick mist obscuring everything this made both the Severn bridges very moody (will add pics soon)

 just north of the second bridge the mist started to lift revealing to heavily laden figures walking towards us, these turned out to be mike and Jenny from an army barracks in York walking from barracks to landsend each of them were carrying about 4 stone of gear! God knows what tho!

With the mists clearing the nice FLAT landscape was revealed with views of pastural bliss ! At west end sluice we dodged the extra mile to oldbury on Severn by hopping over a 15 foot long bridge owned by the water authorities and banned for use by us normal mortals, daresay most take this route, following this was the delightfull magnox neuclear power station ,

 topped up with water at what used to be a pub bit is now an autistic kids home (forget its name tho) here we also met Maggie, Annie and Dave cooper who kindly donated ten pounds to the charity and half of Annie's tea, yep alfies charm works again!

Wandered on to the old powerstation at hamfield farm and headed inland to Berkeley for supplies ,cut a corner here and walked cross country......

 to shepperds patch where our campsite is right at the back of the Tudor pub, plaice and chips for dinner mmmn.

Monday, 26 April 2010

Chew Stoke to The banks of the Severn

Started today feeling rough ! Don't think I've been taking on enough sugars felt better after a good English breakfast at the B & B tho, glad I did get my energies up too as today has been really hilly again, simple road route to Upper littleton then over Dundry hill to pick up the Monarch way to Long Ashton picked up pastries at a bakery and sat on flowery bank in the sun to eat my grub.
Went east out of town and into the Ashton court estate , pretty place with deer mowing the lawns for them!

Climbed out of the estate and entered Bristol via the Clifton suspension bridge cracking piece of engineering!

Then followed the bristol community forest path through town not much in the way of forest to my eyes! Went through some charming and no doubt incredibly rich suburbs and then through the council estates where I was able to restock food and get some more cash, from the council estates we decended to my chosen route over the M5 only to find the bridge had been demolished oh sugar I said..........
Did find an alternative route through Hallen which just happened to have an open pub , so that worked out nicely! Following this continued through the Crooks marsh petrochemical plants.........

 and finally to the severn way and our pitch on the banks of the estuary with great views to Wales and both the severn bridges as the sun sets over the water.

I think we managed to see most aspects of Bristol today, nice city too hilly tho !