THE last day of April 2022 began with my awakening early enough to be downstairs and ready to eat the very moment breakfast service began in my hotel. Then, pleasingly filled with both bacon and enthusiasm, I headed outside to walk through Wick and then southwards to Lybster, the name of which I had as yet no idea how to pronounce (it’s ‘libe-ster’ not ‘lib-ster’).Continue reading “CCXXVII – Wick to Lybster”
A LITTLE over a week ago, as I write this, I awoke in my hotel room in Dunnet and threw back the curtains to find a cloudy sky and puddles on the ground. The heavy rain, forecast to appear for an hour the previous day, had stubbornly remained through the night. But, while it had clearly continued until not long before I awoke, I was pleased to see that it had finally stopped, which meant I could start on my trek for the day…Continue reading “CCXXIV – Dunnet to John o’ Groats”
HAVING made the decision not to trek up the coast to Cape Wrath, the final day of my September 2019 trip involved a straightforward amble up the A838 from Rhiconich (An Ruigh Còinnich, ‘the mossy slope’) to Durness (Diùranais, from Norse dyrnes meaning ‘deer promontory’)…Continue reading “CCXVII – Rhiconich to Durness”
AS THE winter nights shortened and the calendar crept towards the spring of 2018, I looked forward to resuming my perambulatory pastime. The warmer weather would also be more welcome except that it never arrived. Instead, a cold front — nicknamed the ‘Beast from the East’ — swept across Britain, burying rural areas under drifts of snow and even dusting London with the stuff.Continue reading “CLXXXIV – Craignure to Pennyghael”
ON THE last walking day of my May trip I caught a bus from Campbeltown to Southend. Upon arrival, I would turn and walk back to Campbeltown albeit by a roundabout route. This would be the final and most arduous section of the Kintyre Way, passing near to — but not over — the Mull of Kintyre from which Northern Ireland can be seen. The Kintyre Way actually ends at Machrihanish but I had it in my head to also walk the five miles from there to Campbeltown (unless I’d had enough by then, when I might just use public transport).Continue reading “CLXX – Southend to Machrihanish”
AFTER a day and night of continuous rain, I was unsurprised to find the sky grey but delighted that it seemed to have temporarily run out of water to drop on my head. I came within seconds of missing the bus by dint of waiting at entirely the wrong bus stop but the driver took my stupidity in his stride. It was only after the bus was underway that I realised that my stupidity extended further than that — I had left my delicious packed breakfast in the fridge at my B&B. Still, at least this meant I couldn’t sit on it.Continue reading “CXLVII – Drummore to Port Logan”
ABOUT a week into September I stumbled out into bright morning sunshine in the town of Annan. Surely this couldn’t be Scotland? Where was the rain and the snow? But a search of my pocket revealed unfamiliar banknotes for north of the border was indeed where I was.
IT IS early December as I write this and winter is closing in. It is already much darker and colder than when I last walked and that was but a few weeks ago in mid-November. And autumn was already skulking home, wrapped in a coat and muttering, even then.Continue reading “CXIV – Rhyl to Flint”
TO RESUME my perambulation around the coast of Anglesey I took advantage of a lull at work and travelled back to Amlwch on a Friday afternoon, staying overnight in nearby Bull Bay. This meant that I was up and out early on Saturday morning, returning to Amlwch just in time to realise that I’d left my sunscreen in London. The weather forecast was approximately ‘Gas Mark Five’.Continue reading “CIX – Amlwch to Benllech”
I AWOKE bright and early in my hotel in Cemaes to find that the promised ‘glorious sunshine’ was indeed glorious. Later, when I was on the cliff tops, I would find that it was accompanied by a howling gale of a wind, but one that was suitably sun-warmed so that it felt as though walking under the blast of an enormous hairdryer. This is not the weather usually associated with North Wales (I’d had some of that the day before).
This was to be a short walk, just far enough to get me to Amlwch, from which I could catch a bus that would begin my journey home.Continue reading “CVIII – Cemaes to Amlwch”