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]

Tuesday, 18 February 2014


We would have had a longer walk today except that, last night (perhaps in a fit of laziness) I decided that I could get away without doing laundry, even though it would be our last day of this trip on which we would have laundry facilities. This morning, I changed my mind, thus a chunk of time, when we should have been travelling, was spent laundering.

So, by the time we had travelled to Dirleton (just north of North Berwick), parked, lunched and drunk tea, it was 1pm, which didn’t give long enough to do my originally intended walk, although there was plenty of time to some variant of coastal walk.

As it went, I erred too much on the side of caution (having not measured anything), and we could have gone a few miles further, but what we did do was very pleasant, save for the light rain that fell on us for the last mile.

Having walked the short distance from the Yellowcraig car park to the beach, west was the direction we chose and for a while we had a good view of this island:


The tiny snap doesn’t really show the lighthouse, nor the natural archway in the rock

For ease of progress the grassy path through the dunes was taken, rather than walking along the beach – until we missed the continuation of the dune path and found ourselves on the beach. It was certainly ankle shaping, and quite stunning too.


Having not gone far enough (as I now realise) we headed inland and picked up a track that bears no resemblance, in its route, to that shown on the map. I did comment, as we made our way across a golf course (it’s hard to go for a walk in these parts without crossing a golf course!) that in a couple of days time we will lose the liberty to ‘just cut across to…’ like this, as tomorrow night will see us back in England.

Dirleton is a place we passed through on our East to West walk. I remember it well - we stopped for second breakfast on the green overlooking the castle. Mick didn’t remember it at all until we were leaving at he looked back from the viewpoint we would have had when we originally entered. It’s an incredibly well kept place with a distinct lack of ugly or out-of-place buildings.


The stats were that we walked almost precisely 5 miles with around 350’ of ascent. Tomorrow we will get up early enough (and faff little enough) to be able to get in a slightly longer walk. I hope the weather’s good, because it’s a walk I’ve been waiting to do for almost 3 years.

(Note to TVPS, if you happen to be reading: we would have got in touch to see if you were open for tea-drinking visitors today, but it seems that when I replaced my phone 18 months ago, I didn’t get very far in copying my address book across to my new phone. Sorry!)


  1. I see Blogger has stopped giving the slideshow option when you click to enlarge. You have to look at photos one at a time. They did this a few weeks ago and then restored the slideshow. All very annoying. Looks like you're having quite a varied trip.

  2. That's a wonderful bit of coastline, I spent a few days wandering around there a couple of years ago - I must go back.


  3. Even with my phone number you would not have gotten a reply. Had to be away from home on an unexpected and decidedly unwelcome matter. Glad you appear to have enjoyed your trip down the East Coast. Understand your reasons for being on Porty beach but it would have been a splendid day for the Pentland Hills. Easy access both ends by cheap and frequent Lothian Transport buses. Next time perhaps?
    Glad someone informed you about whales jaw bones on North Berwick Law and reason for fibre glass replica. Musselburgh used to have a set as well (not far from camp site you used on K2CW walk) but when they disintegrated there was no wealthy benefactor to replace them. .