Walk completed August 28, 2011

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Day 84 – Dornoch to Golspie – 11 miles

I can’t compliment the staff of the Dornoch Castle Hotel too highly. From the time I checked in with my upgrade until the time I checked out the entire staff treated me as an honored guest, despite the fact that I carried a backpack rather than a golf bag. It was a lovely place to stay, but I still have to travel north.

Low tide at Loch Fleet
Today’s walk started out on a minor road through farm fields and pastures, and then along the shore of Loch Fleet, a tidal estuary. Scores of shore birds scoured the low-tide shallows searching for breakfast. I saw three blue herons and lots of those funny little birds with the curved beaks who were probing the sand shallows.

Eventually, though, I had to join the busy A9 road to cross the estuary. There was very little verge to walk on, so generally I walked on the road’s fog line. I was walking against the traffic of course, and every time a vehicle came my way I stepped off the road and onto what little verge there was until the vehicle passed. After a short time a policeman on a motorcycle drove by from behind me with blue lights flashing, and at least ¼ mile ahead of me stopped all the traffic coming in my direction. Wow!! This was great. King Arthur must have notified the police to escort me.

When I finally reached the line of cars which had been stopped ahead of me, I asked one of the drivers if he knew why he had been stopped. With as much humility as I could muster, I was going to explain my role if he didn’t know.

But he did know. Approaching behind me were three extra-long lorries transporting windmill blades – they were so long that they needed both sides of the road when taking curves. Although I was a little deflated that the traffic stop wasn’t in my honor, I took advantage of it and crossed almost the entire bridge before traffic started moving again.

Balblair Wood
After the bridge I would have still faced 4 miles of A9 road-walking before reaching Golspie were it not for brilliant wayfinding by Jack Frost.  His route turned the dreary road walk into a lovely walk through the Balblair Wood and then along a little used golf course lane.

Upon arrival in Golspie, I stopped for a cappuccino and my eyes fell upon a headline posting at the news agent across the street.

I didn’t know they were following my blog. Maybe I need to go under cover. I better buy that bicycle and a helmet, and get one of those funny shirts with words written all over it. With a new disguise, I can get to JOG before they know it.

Puzzle of the day:  Identify this car:

© 2011 Ken Klug


  1. Its a Rover ( i cheasted as i enlarged the picture), and the birds with the curly beaks are maybe Curlews. Keep safe on those roads.

  2. I think thats a rover P6, the number plate suggests around 1975.
    Agree with the birds being curlews.

    Cheers J.P.

  3. Ken, you are making great progress and it's not even raining. I think this is too easy for you. There are those islands stretching out after John O' Groats; time to add the Orkney & Shetland islands?

  4. Ken, It a Rover P6, I should know as I work at the factory where they made them (now the Land Rover Factory)


  5. Rover 1000, everybody wins! Sounds like you enjoyed your upgrade, very good, now on to that finish line before they catch up with you!

  6. I was going to say AMC Gremlin :-) Glad you took the short cut; it's a nice walk. Hope you enjoy the beach walk to Bora tomorrow and don't forget to try the beach walk to Helmsdale. It was one of my best days.