I left Byrness at about 8-ish and wandered down to the Pennine Way, crossed the River Rede and took the unwaymarked path up through the forest to join the Toll Road back to Kielder.
This is point and fire stuff. There’s no messing about here, and little of immediate interest unless you really like trees – that is, spruce trees, not oak or anything with a bit of life in it – just spruce. Miles and miles and miles and miles of…. spruce.
I got to the summit of the road at Blakehope Nick in fairly short order and found that it was only six miles to Kielder Castle. More point and fire happened, but now it was mainly downhill.
Just a note of information for anybody
By about one o’clock I was talking to the nice police lady at the car park behind the Anglers’ Arms about why I’d abandoned my car there for three days and scared the locals into thinking I’d gone off into the woods to top meself.
She was very nice about it, though
Today was 12 miles and 1400 feet and not specially interesting. I could have made more out of the wild life hides (I thought the notice was an obvious statement… wild life does hide, doesn’t it?) and the Osprey thingy, but I just couldn’t be arsed, to be honest.
For anybody walking the Border, it’s a very quick and easy way to Byrness and will only take half a day, so best have a lazy breakfast at the Kielder castle tea room.
So that’s that. There’s a bit more Borders sweeping up to do, but we now have A Route. The high level route is easier walking than the Kielder-Byrness bridleway, but is 22 miles and will likely take an extra half a day.