Saturday, 16 June 2007

DAY 107: Newton Lodge to Rhiconich

Friday 15th June 2007
Today: 21.4 miles miles
Total so far: 1524.4 miles
Percentage Completed: 91.3%


Morning Route (Click map to enlarge)

After a really good day off to re-charge my knackered batteries, I am away at a sensible time from the hotel, 9:10am. I have a biggish day in the back of my mind: Richard White is coming up from London and getting to Rhiconich tonight a further 6km through pretty trackless very rough stuff than on my planned route and if I am to meet him today the whole day comes to 21.4 miles, which is a big ask for me with a very heavy food bag (five days of breakfast, lunches and dinners) in Sutherland.

So, I resolve to see how it goes and not push it too hard and wait and see in the afternoon.

I walk over the Kylesku Bridge; a wonder of Structural Engineering (built on a curve, spanning the Atlantic). You must visit it: It has won awards, you know! (Concrete Society Award amongst others) I then dive down the Duke of Westminster's new Landrover Track (a truly wonderful chap for giving me a good thoroughfare across his estate, along Loch Glencoul.



I am soon having an early lunch on top at the Shielin with fabulous views of Arkle and Ben Stack (where Robin Cooke lost his life). It is all quite splendid but I don't hang around too long as the wind is quite fierce and cold from the north. I am soon down in the warmth of the trees and off again to find the lochans that head towards Rhiconich.

Trackless to Rhiconich


Afternoon Route. (Click map to enlarge)

This is Extremely Hard Work Indeed (the capitals are important here) and I am wondering if I am doing the right thing in trying to meet Rich. You struggle through incredibly rough heather and very wet bog indeed. The heather has loads of invisible rough rocks, so you take it very carefully. It is hot and I am now tired, but by plugging on, bit by bit I finally make a rough track of sorts by the boathouse.

I make the hotel just after six, pretty good going, and make straight for the bar for a shandy followed by a few Guinnesses (for the iron, you know…)

Richard is on his way and has a room booked, but the hotel is full, so I take his floor. Photos are posted to Mr Hee to put on the blog and we slip into catching up with each other after we had last met in Somerset, drinking until quite late.

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