Day 33: Lanark – Carstairs – Carstairs Junction – Newbigging – Dunsyre – Dolphinston – West Linton

20.6 miles – a wicked wind, splattering rain

Wind-swept beach trees between Newbigging and Dunsyre

The journey as far as Lanark was along a chain of four long-distance paths, I pick up another chain of trails at West Linton; the 20 miles in between has to be covered on roads… almost. I noticed there was an old railway line which might be traversable, and if it were, would cut off three miles of trunk road.

All started well, the old trackbed was concreted over; then I heard the whir of a car behind me. “This is private property.” Bugger! I apologised profusely and explained. “Well, there’s an enclosure ahead and a field beyond.” I had the impression I was being given reluctant permission to proceed. I went through the enclosure. The fence beyond was low enough to step over. “Yeaww!” It was electrified. It was only later that it occurred to me that the blighter might have turned it on deliberately – the field beyond was a hay field.

No more ‘optimistic’ routes!

“All started well…” The old railway east of Carstairs Junction
An unusual and ancient Cross at Newbigging
Glowering skies and a hint of sunshine looking south-east near Dolphinton
The bridge at West Linton, which carries Roman road across West Water; it was built in 1620.

The wind and rain smote me all day, so I felt Blessed, when on arriving at West Linton, I came upon the Gordon Arms Hotel. The proprietress welcomed me before I even entered, they provided me with decent ale, good food and a very reasonbly priced bed for the night. I felt I had handed on my feet.

The Gordon Arms, West Linton

Comments (2):

  1. Julia

    28 June 2022 at 20:24

    The Gordon Arms is always a welcome landmark when I’m driving up to Edinburgh, glad to hear you had a good welcome there

  2. Peter

    1 July 2022 at 07:43

    Bad luck, the old railway looked like a good punt. Well persevered! I find the retracing of steps very demoralising. That road junction in Glasgow would’ve got my…goat.


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