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]

Saturday 24 April 2010

Day 33 - Dod Burn to Hawick

Sat 24 April
Distance: 10 miles (Tot: 559.25 miles)

With such a short day ahead of us (I'm calling it a day off; Mick doesn't agree with that classification), I was lazy this morning, not getting out of my sleeping bag until an hour and a half after the alarm had gone off.

Once we did get going, climbing back out of the valley in which we had camped, it was a pleasant stroll indeed.

Our packs were light (little food, little water), and there was much evidence of ancient settlements and forts to interest us on the early parts of our amble.

The second half of the route I had plotted on the map looked very circuitous, with great detours being taken simply to avoid walking down the B road into Hawick.

The circuitous route was not needed though. On the ground, as we passed through a curious area that we guess was the location of an old army training camp, it became apparent that a much more pleasing, and much more direct route could be taken. Through sheep and lamb filled lush pasture land we went, then past a couple of reservoirs to pick up a minor road into Hawick.

As is usual in a town of a significant size, it took us quite a while to get to the other side, mainly today being distracted for a couple of hours by Morrison's coffee shop, which, after lunch, allowed Mick to read the paper and watch our bags whilst I stocked up on supplies for the next couple of days.

With hindsight, I wouldn't have planned to spend a night in Hawick, and would have walked on, as we seemed to have more than enough short days at the moment. However, that wasn't an option on the spur of the moment as we had a food parcel waiting for us at the campsite. So, a 2.5 mile walk out of our way (although not unpleasant, being along the river) was required to get to the campsite.

Still, it's a lovely afternoon to be sitting around. I've hand-washed all of our clothes (the washer being out of order) and it's now all hanging (knotted, in the absence of pegs) on the site washing line drying.
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