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

Thursday, 22 September 2011

Winshield farm to a woodland wildcamp

<p>After a night at winshields bunkhouse we part company with dave and Willow the chocolate labrador , heading off route we follow last years lejog route to Haltwhistle for a resupply of provisions quite a deviation but nice to go back and sit on the bench outside co-op and think of last year!
Getting back to the present we walk west out of town road walking for a few miles to the roman museum at first Greenhead making good use of the cafe, tea and cake later we are back on the wall walking towards Gilsland ,after a quick stop for  a pint the path out of town goes past the remains of the wall where it crosses the river. ....... and up steep banks either side an impressive feat even today! Past the field study center above and a couple of miles further we reach the woods selected for tonights wild camp, after a short search a good spot between two fallen trees sees us bedded down for the night on a soft mattress of wood sorrel! Can't believe how much sorrel is in this small wood!.

Wildcamp to Crosby on eden

With everything packed away we head out of the wood to pass a farmhouse no more than150 yards from our pitch, whoops ! Glad it was well hidden  ;)
More walking along general wades road to a place called banks and its field walking, passing Haytongate(farm once?) We find one of those rare wonders of the walking world, an honesty box cafe! Tea later:-) and we start passing the latest batch of west to rest walkers, passed about fifteen! Then the weather turned,with heavy head winds and strong rain ,its time to just go for it, and so we do to Crosby on eden, where a quick stop at the hotel there changes our fortunes, its one of those places way to posh for a scruffy walker and his mucky pup, but they still let us in breaking there own rules!
Finally getting a mobile connection, I find there's a bunkhouse just up the road so to make our timing for the train home work out we finish the day here, and what a place to stay the Crosby house bunk house is great £12 for a plush shared room with TV, and attached kitchen and shower room! Mucky pup is now a ginger ball of fluff!

Wednesday, 21 September 2011

Chollerton to winshield farm

A little more  b road walking(yes the same one!) Out of chollerton and we head slightly of road under overcast skies to walk along now quite impressive remains of the wall! With at one point the remains of a mithraic temple!(pic)
Back over the road we follow the earthworks to the point where we finally escape the b road! And head onto the famous part of the wall following the winsill ridge which the wall hugs all the way to greenhead, which we reach tomorrow, for now the rollercoaster ride that is the ridge takes us to winshield farm(familiar to jp and Ruth from previous visits) where we make use of the bunk house to avoid the now continuous rain! 

Beside the Tyne to chollerton

Well after such a beautiful sunrise, the going was equally good, a couple of miles walking and we enter Heddon in the wall where we bought a few extra provisions before heading of on the b4218 which we were to follow for the whole day, not particularly interesting with only vague roman remains buried by the road, incidentally this is another road built by general wade! Busy chap!
By midday we had reached "the Robin hood " pub(gets everywhere doesn't he!) Where a nice sunday lunch of roast chicken was had:-)
More following the b road had  us criss crossing the road between way to many cow fields,  culminating in a field of extremely irritating cows who along with there massive bull chased us out the field.. .......guess the farmer thought walkers would know a bull was there without the need for a warning sign!(rant)
Sticking to the road for a bit we get to the dog unfriendly Elkington arms.. ... where we head off road and out of cow country(thankfully) 
A bit of pleasant field walking and we finally see the first bit of hadrians wall since walls end(1.5 days later)
Then down hill into chollerton to set up camp at the riverside camp site ,where you can order indian food deliverys too!

O2 are crap!

No signal since newcastle now close to carlisle!

Sunday, 18 September 2011

This is home!

A perfect start to the day laying in the bivi cooking porridge and coffee under a ceiling of leaves which are catching the first rays of the morning sun, lovely !
Oh and the Robin is back!   :-)

Saturday, 17 September 2011

Breath in Alfie!

To say the bivi is a squeeze is no real surprise! But it works:-)
Back to our arrival.
Got to newcastle central station, found the metro, found the metro confusing, went the wrong way! Finally got to wallsend got out the train to gentle rain .could have been worse, then it got interesting, we couldn't find the start?! We could see the path through high iron fence but the only way to it was to pay to get into the museum! Sod that! So following a parallel road we eventually got to this lovely sign and on to the path! 
It all became clear as we walked on tho the planners of the trail seem to think that everyone walks from the west, a good 30% of the signs don't  point the way west at all and no sign indicates the ahem finish in the east!.
From this point things really improved tho,  the sun came out as we entered newcastle, and throngs of people were cheering us as we walked, tho could have been something to do with the first day of the great north run!  ;).
This proved really popular and passage along the trail slowed right down with the numbers of people jamming the roads, good atmosphere tho, pushed on and after following the Tyne for miles in lovely sunshine we found a pub by the Tyne called the "row men" or something like that ahem! A pint to ease the feet and a further couple of miles and we reach our planned wild camp point for the night, good spot too! While cooking dinner under the trees we were visited three times by a little Robin! Must be nesting nearby. Time to sleep its getting dark,  night world!

Friday, 16 September 2011

Pre walk pack weight

After numerous little alterations to the pack, additions as well as things being removed or updated I've managed to lose 1.52 kilos from the weight of my old lejog pack pretty pleased with this!
The weight for our hadrians wall C2C before food or water but inclusive of fuel for the stove is 8.94 kilos :-)
Obviously the biggest change is the bivi tent, no real idea as to how well this is going to perform but that's half the fun!
Its good to be back!.

Sunday, 11 September 2011

A few little changes to the blog!

As the title points out a couple of widgets have been added to the blog, to the right is the return of the "where am i" widget, allways nice for people to follow!, and then there's "The Next Horizons" where i'll post my hopes and dreams for future walks!.
At the top of the future horizons listing is "hadrians wall" after the abandonment of the "east west way" this year I was determined to get at least a small coast to coast walk in! which i'll be walking with alfie (as ever) at the end of next week!. looking further down the list the "east west way" has been rescheduled for 2013 for completion or at least the next stage!.

The road goes ever on and on!

Back on track!

Well new home and now finally a functional mission control for CTH!
(Think Alfie is impressed !?)