Sunday, 8 May 2011

And on the ninth day...

... Bob reached Scotland! At 5pm to be precise. That's nearly nine full days to cycle 660 miles to reach the Border. Over 10% of the route completed already!

It rained heavily all last night. Didn't get much sleep, listening to stair rods hitting the tent and worrying about how I would cope if it rained all day too. It had eased off a bit by 07.30 to risk getting up. Left later than usual, at 9.00, with everything, including me, well covered up. By 11 the rain had stopped and the sun even shone briefly.

Reached Holy Island by lunchtime, after a long haul into the wind across the causeway. But it was worth it, if only to see the tiny fishing harbour that nestles in the lee of Lindisfarne Castle.

The National Cycle Route from there to Berwick consisted of rough gated tracks across marshland, through herds of cattle and over sand dunes. OK for a mountain bike perhaps, but not one such as mine. This section took far too long and, combined with the late start, I was running well behind schedule.

I had planned to meet John Aitchison, the Harbour Master at Burnmouth, where I was promised 'coffee and a crab sandwich'. I eventually arrived at 5.30 to a great welcome from John and his wife Heather. Not only was the crab freshly caught, but I was also given a most generous donation of £200 for the two charities from the Burnmouth Harbour Trust. Also, friends of John and Heather, who live nearby, had heard of my exploits, and donated a further £50. Aren't people kind!

I stayed at Burnmouth for an hour and could have stayed much longer. But I still had Eyemouth and St Abbs to visit before finishing the day near Cove. As I neared my destination, I came over the top of a hill to be presented with a fabulous sunset. In the distance were Bass Rock, the Lafarge Cement Works south of Dunbar, Torness Power Station and the Isle of May, all seemingly emerging from an orange mist.

Finally, I couldn't find the camp site, so I've set up the tent in the corner of a field tonight. Thank goodness for Scotland's liberal 'wild camping' laws! Tomorrow I should reach Edinburgh.


  1. Good to hear you're fit and well, keep those legs working with the occasional pint of beer

  2. You're doing brilliantly. So impressed. Good pictures too.