Wednesday, 20 May 2009

Day 44 Monday - Longtown to Langholm

Walking 8.55am to 5.30pm
Distance walked today 14 miles
Total distance walked 635 miles
Distance left 417 miles

A wet day was forecast for today. It rained overnight but I packed up under the tarp and it let up for a few minutes for me to get the tarp down and away.

I passed the site of the Battle of Solway Moss (1542) at NY381675. Had never heard of it but was presumably between the English and the Scots.

Longtown Church

Longtown was rather a drab little place but has much history due to its border location. The rain got quite nasty as I left which made it seem even more drab. My way out was along an overgrown footpath between a haulage depot and something else industrial.

On the A7, I was tempted by the smell of bacon at a snack van in a layby. I had a superb bacon roll. The lovely lady didn't charge me so that's another £1.80 for my charity (I meant to ask her name - if she reads this, please could she post a note to the blog with it?).

Fortified, I went a short distance along the A7 and took a lane signposted Corries Mill and turned off it after 3/4 mile to Glinger Burn. This went towards the border. A couple of gentleman farmers gave me directions. The border was in a belt of trees called Scots' Dike. I thought maybe someone might have arranged a lone piper. Instead, as I couldn't find any right of way at this point, I fought my way into Scotland through trees and brushwood, emerging at the top of a slope, slithered down and then waded a burn.

Looking back at my border crossing

At a gate into a farm was the headless body of a deer; it was dead, of course, but a bit spooky nevertheless.

I followed a lane to Evertown and took the track over the crossroads there.

After a mile, my route went somewhat awry and I lost my sense of direction. I came to Glenzier Burn which was maybe a foot deep and fast flowing. I debated whether to remove socks and put plastic bags over my boots. In the end, I crossed over on the adjacent wooden thingy (with a rail above) that farmers put across a stream/burn to stop sheep and other things from being swept downstream. Fortunately, it bore my weight. The GPS then confirmed my location.

From here, I went past Ryehills Farm and took the track to the right at the junction just past The Kerr for just over a mile, before following a path helpfully waymarked by Dumfries & Galloway Countryside Paths to Skipper's Bridge on the A7 just outside Langholm. Here, I followed a lane and paths into the town on the west side of the River Esk.

With a couple of days without shops ahead, I did some shopping on the way to the Ewes Water campsite on the north side of Langholm on the A7 so I don't have to go into town again in the morning.


  1. Welcome to Scotland, Geoff.

    You'll have had your tea?

  2. Och, nae! Are you coming to join me anywhere? Text me on 07794 453633 if you can but I won't hold my breath.

  3. Best not to hold out, Geoff. We're not on holiday, so it'd be a fuss to try and meet you somewhere on the trail at a weekend. From the route-plan, I guess you're not going anywhere near Aviemore?