31st May 2018
Weather: Cloudy, warm.
A gentle day in chi-chi Melrose (eg: posh pie shop mentioned in a JK Rowling book. You know this because they tell you in the window, complete with a book and photo of JKR).
Sat in a couple of quiet NTS gardens by the Abbey. In Priorwood garden watched a beekeeper, armed with smokepot, stealing honey.
Visited the somewhat underwhelming amateur Roman Trimontium museum, as most of the local finds are displayed elsewhere.
Discovered that the Minch Moor bothy, I was planning to stay at tomorrow night, seems to have disappeared between 2014 and 2016. If I need to avoid a forecast thunderstorm on Saturday there’s a low-level former railway line, between Innerleithen and Peebles, instead of the Southern Upland Route. (At just 5 miles instead of 12 on higher ground. Less interesting is fine if it avoids thunderstorm on the hills!)
Beekeeper at work.
JK’s favourite is the steak & mushroom I believe
The most impressive museum exhibit, with accompanying magnifying glass to view the coin hoard in detail.
Yesterday I decided that I would suspend this trip at Spean Bridge, and use the time to go and bag some outstanding Munros, (blog at “An Excuse to Eat More Cake”). That’s simply because I cannot get to Dunnet Head and get home before the end of June without some difficult compromises.
The alternative was worrying about which sections to join together for one day, forgo rest days, AND abandon the “hard” wild-camping section along the Cape Wrath Trail (Spean Bridge to Watten), in favour of the JOG trail. All those tricks would allow me to do it in time, but it’s not what I really want to do. The 7 days back home for injury used up all my flexibility.
I am now planning more days off, and eliminating the anxiety of reaching Dunnet Head by 29th June, so expect to enjoy the remaining walking far more.
I hope to resume in May 2019, which will coincide with the need for something to get over Brexit blues.