Day 9: Carlisle to Bowness on Solway

So I really did it. And walked nearly 130 miles:

Mon 8 Jun: 4.62 miles

Tue 9 Jun: 16.9 miles

Wed 10 Jun: 14.7 miles

Thu 11 Jun: 17.6 miles

Fri 12 Jun: 16.9 miles

Sat 13 Jun: 5.7 miles

Sun 14 Jun: 19.2 miles

Mon 15 Jun: 16.7 miles

Tue 16 Jun: 17.1 miles

 The first day, Mon 8 Jun, was just me getting to Kings Cross and getting on and off the Metro in Newcastle.

Anyway, the last day of walking was actually pretty enjoyable. My feet were hurting and I was walking really slowly, and there wasn’t much to see (not even the usual humps and bumps of Milecastles and turrets) but it was quite atmospheric trekking along the flat watery marshes of Cumbria. And the proximity of The End did add a certain buzz!

It all made me think back to the early days of the walk, which seem so long ago now: watching a bloke in a white van reverse slap bang into a traffic light, knocking it to the ground, outside the Great North Museum in Newcastle… Getting abuse shouted at me from some local youths as I used a selfie stick to Skype the Lower 6th at Segedunum… It was quite a long way.

Something else that struck me was how kind, open and ready for a happy chat were so many people I’ve met along the way, whether walkers or locals. On the last day, I got myself on the wrong side of the river, assuming I could just cross later, and the bridge was not traversible – but luckily a man walking his dog approached, and when I asked where I could cross, he walked on, even well past the path he was going to take, cheerfully chatting and showed me the best way to get to the new road across the river.

Well, the big walk is done, and now it’s time for some less challenging days. Tomorrow: Tullie House Museum in Carlisle and Senhouse Museum in Maryport; Thursday is time for the steam railway and walk from Ravenglass to Hardknott Roman Fort and Friday is time to visit the Roman bath house at Ravenglass, and then back down South!

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