The Road goes ever on and on; Down from the door where it began;
Now far ahead the Road has gone; And I must follow, if I can;
Pursuing it with eager feet; Until it joins some larger way;
Where many paths and errands met; And whither then? I cannot say.

[JRR Tolkien, Lord of the Rings]

Monday, 24 February 2014

Around Bamburgh

Bamburgh Castle is huge. Therefore, it’s a landmark that’s visible from quite a distance. We got our first glimpse of it when we were on Holy Island, and now that we’re staying nearby, it is very often within our sights. In fact, it would be in my sight right now, from my seat inside of Colin, if it wasn’t for the facts that: 1) I’m facing the wrong direction; 2) the curtains are closed; and 3) some inconsiderate* people went and pitched a caravan next to us, removing our view in that direction.

It was there in our view as we set out across farmland this morning**…


… although we did lose it for the middle third of our outing.

I don’t think many people walk the middle third of our route, or at least they don’t take the field paths, judging by the overgrown stiles and lack of trodden lines across the crops. Most of the paths were well signed, although (approaching from the opposite direction to which I took this photo) we did miss this one masquerading as a protruding bit of hedgerow:


That obscured sign heralded the worst 100 yards of our entire holiday, as it took us through a farmyard which (along with the bit of track that led away from it) was an absolute disgrace to be seen. Fortunately, we were soon back in nice clean fields.


If I’d paid more attention to the information sign at Seahouses harbour yesterday, I would be able to tell you more about the era of lime production in these parts. Even though I can’t remember the key details about when it started and when it ended, I did recognise the two instances of evidence of the activity that we passed:


By and by, the Northumberland Coast Path was joined, but once again, we were on a section that wasn’t in close proximity to the coast. This time, however, it did take us to sea views (and of course Bamburgh Castle views), and for a while it even took us along the coast.


Quite a bit of time was spent on or next to Bamburgh Castle Golf Course (excellent way-marking, by the way) where five paces of trespass took us to a sheltered bench with an excellent sea view. It wasn’t a moment too soon, either, as it was a late lunch today.


For anyone not familiar with one of these structures, it’s so the people about to play from the adjacent tee can gain a bit of height to check that there’s no-one on the out-of-sight fairway or green ahead.

The path around the golf course had us walking right above the beach, and it was quite lovely:IMG_5975

By then we were on the approach to Bamburgh, although we didn’t visit the village itself. Just after passing a deer on the rocks…


…the coast path would have had us leave the coast, but we didn’t follow it. Instead, we opted for the longer (but more pleasing) walk along the beach:


Can I get away with just one more snap of the castle? I took quite a few…


A surprising number of people were on the beach outside of the castle (considering that it’s a Monday in February), but once we rounded the corner we couldn’t believe the solitude afforded to us:


It was a 10.2 mile outing, with somewhere around 750’ of up and in decidedly spring-like weather.

(*It may be a little unreasonable to refer to our neighbours as being inconsiderate. They are on a perfectly legitimate pitch.

**It was only just morning. Our day started with an impressive oversleeping incident.)


  1. Congratulations on taking a pic of the farmyard. If anything I guess your description was maybe understated.

    1. It was truly awful. And, it was also the only place on our route where waymarking was lacking. In fact, I'm sure the true route of the path was obstructed by static caravans in various states of destruction. At least sights like that are few and far between.

  2. *It could have been worse and had two Hymers either side of you. Glad you explained photo number six.

    1. Should have picked a better pitch when we arrived! Lesson learnt.

  3. Hope you find time to visit Rothbury and Cragside! You'll love it......

    1. Based on your recommendation, we will - but not on this trip as we've now left Northumberland and are homeward bound.

  4. Good to see you on your way home last night, and hope you enjoyed the show. Sounds like a very pleasurable trip in Colin. I like the Lindisfarne pictures. And so to March - will you be marching to record statistics?

    1. No chance of record stats in March. I can't be breaking records every month!