2018-08-10 St Boswells (Michael Webster)

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Heading NE alongside the Tweed

Total Distance:-           18.3 Km            ( 11.4 miles)

Ave Speed:-                    2.73 Km/hr     (1.70 mph)

[11.13 am –17.09  pm]

Max height:-                  317 m              (1040 ft)

Total ascent:-                433 m              (1420 ft)

Michael Webster led,  10 in group.  Starting the walk near the Bogle Burn where the dismantled railway crosses the A68, we followed the path of the old track for about 500 m before turning WSW climbing up the hill past the site of Roman camps.  As the path levelled out we arrived at Rhymer’s stone where we had coffee.  Here we met Dave’s group and then Michael told us the tale of Thomas the Rhymer who took a fateful nap at this spot and was awakened by the beautiful Queen of Elfland who he kissed.  He then spent 7 years with her before returning home for 7 years and then disappearing for good.  On our way again, we started climbing westwards along the northern flank of Eildon Hill North, before turning S onto St Cuthbert’s Way to climb to the coll between the two main Eildon Hills.  This was quite warm work on what was another hot sunny day.  Consequently, a couple of drinks stops were much appreciated.  The views from the stops were excellent, ranging from the two hills either side of us, Melrose and the Tweed valley.  Over the coll, we descended southwards through Broad Wood. Soon after we had our lunch stop while watching some dark clouds approaching.  After passing through the village of Bowden we turned east on a track following the Bowden Burn.  As we travelled east, we had excellent views of the southern slopes of the Eildon Hills, the sun shining brightly at this point although there were some dark clouds around .  Joining a minor road at Whitlee we continued into Newtown St Boswells.  After crossing the A68, we entered a wood where we met a man with a dog who asked if we had seen a dog on its own.  About half a mile back on the edge of Newtown St Boswells we replied.   Ah, it’s on its way home then was his reply.  After crossing the R Tweed we passed through Dryborough, visiting the Muse on our way.  There was much discussion here as to whether one of the figures was male or female.  Heading back down to the river in the sunshine, we followed the path along the northern bank passing Jeff’s group who were travelling in the opposite direction.  Approaching Mertoun Bridge we became aware once again of darkening clouds but this time there was also the sound of distant thunder.  As we turned back towards St Boswells along by the golf course, the thunder became louder and more frequent although I certainly had not seen any lightening.  Near the golf club- house, the rain started and waterproofs were quickly donned.   The pace quickened as we hurried for the shelter of the buses and the pub.

A very enjoyable walk, with excellent views in the sunny earlier part of the walk and a pleasant stroll along by the river in the latter part.

Peter Bell

 

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