This is a personal blog mainly to do with hillwalking things but with other stuff as well.....maybe the odd rant..
Wednesday, 21 July 2010
Titanium Dude’s Hadrian’s Wall Walk
I’ve mentioned before, somewhere on this blog (you’ll have to look it up yourselves if you’re that interested) about how involvement in the TGO Challenge improves the quality and quantity of a chap’s walking companions. And so it was with this little expedition. Titanium Dude aka Paddy Burrows, TGO Challenger and yet another Fight Club Hiker, once banned from Trail’s Live for the Outdoors forum – a status which many may well envy…) – announced his intention to walk the Hadrian’s Wall LDP on the Peaceful Hiker Forum and , me, having absolutely nothing better to do, asked to join him for a day or so. And Lo! it came to pass that I paid the £3 parking fee at Housesteads Roman Fort and wandered Eastwards along the wall in the calculated belief that at some point T Dude would be met coming the other way. It was sometime after lunch that I arrived at Brocolitia, (site of the temple of Dave Mithras, bull killer and general all-round good-guy as far as Roman Gods is concerned) where there’s a chap selling coffee from the back of a small van in the well preserved Roman Pay and Display Car Park There, I fuelled my addiction to tasty caffeine and, sure enough, a few minutes later T Dude turned up. We had another coffee and marched off towards Carlisle. The weather wasn’t great it has to be said – very humid and spitty and the local black flies were, it would seem, on their holidays too. After trespassing inside Houseteads Fort, and, by using the lie of the land and the walls of a granary, we managed to avoid two individuals in high vis jackets who looked as though they might want to inspect the tickets we hadn’t bought – so we nipped out of the North gate and traversed the outside of the wall to rejoin the path. I noticed that one of the main defences to Houseteads was a sign which said that admission charges applied. This was found to be ineffective, however due to the fact that it wasn’t written in proto-Welsh and the locals weren’t up to reading or obeying rules like that. In fact, we just nipped over the fence. Paddy claimed not to have seen the sign…. A short distance later, i left Paddy to walk on to Winshields Farm whilst I retraced in heavy rain to retrieve the knipemobile from the car park. We met later on the campsite and withdrew strategically to the Twice Brewed pub for our tea and some beer. Later, there was snoring and a rude awakening from heavy early morning rain coming through the tent door that I seem to have forgotten to close. The farm provided breakfast and once more we headed off towards the Solway. More humid stuff – more showers – more blackflies and a few midges later and with lots of up and down work – we eventually arrived at Birdoswald where, after tea in ther cafe, Paddy continued towards Walton and I explored a deep gill to kill time till the bus came. The AD122 whisked me back to Twice Brewed for the princely sum of £3.80. This is a great bus service by the way – the buses are new since last year and, in theory you could walk the wall by staying in, say, Hexham and just using public transport to return to bas eat the end of each day. Anyway, I trust Paddy is yet still forging Westwards – he didn’t seem to be having any problems with the route or the walking, so , all things being equal (which they never are, actually…) – its a fair bet he’ll arrive at Bowness on time and with no significant damage. I have just the one day off to dry my tent, then I’m off again on a little worrif resolution….. For those intent on just sampling Hadrian’s Wall for a couple of days, the best bit is between Chesters and Birdoswald – in my ‘umble….. Altogether, I walked 25 miles with 3100 feet up uphill.
I am a retired NHS Personnel person. All I do nowadays is walk about.
I used to have my pet dog Bruno with me (in the front page pic). he was Superdawg but he died. Now I have Lucky the pup. He's a bit like Bruno, only smaller and more suspicious.