Tuesday, 13 September 2011

Day 45 - Tain to Golspie (17 miles)

I left Agnes and her homely B&B and stepped out into rain. The forecast had predicted rain all day so mentally I was prepared.

Within a few minutes I was wet through. My wide brimmed hat was sodden and lank. It hung in front of my eyes and the channel it created fir the water meant there was a near constant flow of water pouring on me from the brim. It was miserable but my spirit is strong and putting one foot in front of the other is the sane if it's wet or dry.

My main view for the first 2 hours was my shoes. I'd bought these shoes on Day 24 in Keighley. 21 days later and my toe is hanging out of the right one, the left one has a stick jammed in the heel adjustment, and both shoes are just about worn out. I can safely say these have been tested to destruction. As I watched water bubble out the sides and tops of my shoes I thought about how far they've brought me. I've done a chunk of England and most of Scotland. They've served me well.

The rain abated. I could remove my hat and explore the scene around me.

As I explained yesterday the geographical make up has shifted from hilly/mountainous to flat. This changed again today. I now have large hills to my left as I walk. These are covered with heather in bloom. They're craggy but the soft tones of the heather make them visually attractive. There is a sharp contrast to my right. I now look out to the North Sea. A reminder that my time on this journey is drawing to a close. What with torn shoes, thinning t-shirts, a distinct lack of clean clothes (lending to the Walker aroma!) it's probably good timing that the journey ends soon.

Being on the road is not really fun but there are bits and pieces to see. Some of the trees lining the roads are obviously very old. This tells me the road must be fairly old also. It carries busy and (at times) heavy traffic. I wondered what it carried at it's inception? And where was it carrying to?

There are the odd bits of woodland to walk through. Over the last 100 miles or so I've noticed there is a stringy lift green moss that covers some trees. It seems to starve the tree as generally the moss covered trees loss their leaves. This then creates a magical wonderland picture. Old gnarly trees covered in moss tendrils. You half expect someone to step out of a wardrobe when you peer deep into the woodland.

I've also noticed I've walked into autumn (fall, herbst). Trees are starting to look like they deserve a part in Joseph and his coat of many colours. It makes me realise I've actually done something with my summer this year! Makes a pleasant change. I know now that walking is awesome. As long as you're prepared for it and have somewhere to go at the end of your day, walking is brilliant. So simple. My legs have become my mode of transport and they have only needed a short service.

I'm now finishing thus Saturday so only about 72miles left to go. 26.2 of those are being run as the inaugural 'End to End Ender' marathon. I'm not sure exactly where I'll end tomorrow but you can be assured it'll be somewhere near John O'Groats!


  1. Hi Daimon
    At this rate you may as well cancel any train or coach tickets and just walk it. Why not ask the Bruv's to join you in the last little bit (26.2) miles. I'm sure they would love it.

    Best wishes for the noxt few days.

  2. Ho Ho the last 26.2 miles you say??? No problem at all - just so long as we get to drive the car!!!!
    Getting prouder by the day - if that's possible and looking forward more and more to seeing you on Saturday.

  3. The scenery sounds like someting out of The Lion, the Witch and the Wrdrobe or The Hobbit, with the snarled trees being enveloped by ravaging moss. You sure you weren't dreaming. only joking.There I told you were richer than a millionaire with the jewels of Autumn hanging on the trees all around you. Enjoy your last few miles and run your marathon proudly.Will be celebrating here too with you when you reach JOG.......

  4. Hi Daimon- I have been reading your blog everyday and feel so pleased for you (and your feet!) that the end is in sight. I feel sad too, a bit like reading a good book that you don't want to ever finish. I know some wonderful people that live in Barrock, about 6 miles from John O Groats. Ron and Pauline will be there when you arrive at your destination and will be so pleased to meet you. Thanks for all you have done. xxx

  5. Hi , yes you must be feeling very rich indeed, and rightly so. So rich in what you have experienced,witnessed,tolerated, achieved and the people you have met, to name but a few. You started in summer and now in autumn your incredible journey is almost complete,... Portland Hotel in Lynsted will be waiting to welcome you on Friday as the last stay of your journey awaits you. THIS IS LIKE COUNTDOWN TO CHRISTMAS AND WE CANT WAIT TO SEE YOU, HAPPY WALKING.