CLXXIV – Kilberry to Cairnbaan

Hasteful MammalAFTER an awesome breakfast, I emerged from the Kilberry Inn full of bounce and enthusiasm to embark upon my fourth day of walking in July 2017, which would be a 21-miler taking me from Kilberry — which had to be my start point on account of it being where I was — to Cairnbaan near Lochgilphead

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CLVII – Dumbarton to Helensburgh

Hasteful MammalON THE second day of my recent trip, I awoke to find that the promised sunshine had delivered itself in abundance. The skies were blue and the weather warm while, down south in London, water was falling from the sky.  I knew then that, as I walked to Helensburgh, a dash of unashamed schadenfreude would enhance my every step.

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CLVI – Glasgow to Dumbarton

Hasteful MammalI HAD been half-expecting that my walk ending in Glasgow would be the last one of this calendar year before the winter weather rolled in.  But, as it turned out, a week of excellent early November weather in Scotland not only coincided with cold and wet weather in London but also with my good friend the Lemming being able to join me for a week, which he did.

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CLIII – Kilwinning to Largs

Hasteful MammalMORNING in Kilwinning was heralded by the light pitter-patter of drizzle upon the window, which did little to compel me to leave my nice warm bed.  Summoning every ounce of available willpower, I forced myself up and into the bathroom where the cold, tiled floor leached out my body heat in seconds.  This was clearly a situation in need of a remedy and that remedy came in the form of as much cooked breakfast as I could physically shove into my face.  Right, now I was set for a full day’s walking; drizzle be damned!

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CLI – Girvan to Ayr

Hasteful MammalTHE sky was blue and the sun blazing fiercely when I returned to Girvan late in August.  Doused head to toe in my own bodyweight of sunscreen, I strolled back towards the harbour ready to continue from more-or-less where I left off.  This would be the first of three days of walking, covering the sixty-odd miles or so between Girvan and Largs.  Day one’s objective was Ayr, Ayrshire’s historic county town, where I would stay overnight.

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CXXX – Millom to Ravenglass

IHasteful Mammal SHOULD know better than to try to make plans.  Staying overnight in Millom, for instance, so that I could just get up early and start walking.  That was a plan right up until the day before, when my hotel turned out not to have an actual room for me to stay in.

Some last-minute problem-solving saw me staying at St Bees instead, which meant that my hotel was right next to a beach but not, unfortunately, next to Millom.  My earliness would now be constrained by the railway and the rest of my plans would have to be somewhat fluid…

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CXXIV – Lancaster to Carnforth

Hasteful MammalTHE morning after my arrival in Lancaster, I emerged from my hotel full of enthusiasm, energy and significant quantities of breakfast.  A blue sky was bedecked with fluffy white clouds and the clouds were also full of enthusiasm and energy — but probably not breakfast — judging by the speed at which they were bombing across the heavens.

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CXXIII – Fleetwood to Lancaster

Hasteful MammalMY RETURN to Lancashire came interestingly close to not happening, as I slept through my alarm and missed my intended train into central London

The next one, which I caught, gave me very little time to transfer between National Rail and Underground stations, which culminated in my racing through London Euston and leaping aboard my train to Preston with literally seconds to spare.  Compared to that, the ten minute transfer window I had at Preston provided great opportunity for dawdling. 

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CXXI – Preston to Lytham St Anne’s

Hasteful MammalI CHOSE the penultimate weekend of March 2015 on which to return to Preston and continue what was in theory my coastal perambulation, not that much of the first day’s walking could really be described as ‘coastal’.

In theory, my route for the day was pretty simple. I just needed to head west along the northern bank of the Ribble until it widened out into an estuary and I could head north along the coast.  That seemed pretty straightforward, what could possibly go wrong? 

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LXXXIII – Newgale to Whitesands Bay

Hasteful MammalFOR one reason and another — partly that I was busy and partly that I wanted to wait until the trees had stopped trying to have sex with my nose — I allowed six weeks to elapse between my previous walk and this one.  It was probably a little too long.

I was feeling slightly out of practice as I arrived back in Newgale (Niwgwl) and looked at the path climbing up out of the village onto the clifftop. Certainly, it was long enough to miss a window of several weeks’ worth of glorious weather; it was overcast with threats of drizzle when I finally returned.

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