The Pennine Way, Day 17 

Date: Sunday 7 June 2015

Walked from: Windy Gyle, Northumberland

Walked to: Kirk Yetholm, SCOTLAND!!!

Distance: 14 miles (ish) 

Stayed: The Border Hotel 

Weather: Dry, sunny later, great visibility

The final day of our 260 mile walk dawned bright and dry, and having hugged goodbye to Colin and Joyce, the wonderful hosts of Forest View, it was time to set off back up the leg stiffening climb we had walked down in the rain the day before. The wind was still with us, but in positively benign mood compared to the day before, and the rain decided to let us be for the day. 
Today’s walk was fabulous, and a fitting end to my Pennine Way adventure. Picking the trail back up again at Windy Gyle, we walked on the English side of the border for miles, up to the trig point at King’s Seat before hanging a sharp left and heading to Auchope Cairn and the spectacularly beautiful decent down the side of the emerald green hillside of Hen Hole, towards our last refuge hut of the trip. Next came the glorious climb up to The Schil, which – my guidebook states – is said to be the most attractive hill in The Cheviots. How you’re supposed to pick one among so many equals I don’t know, but it was another lovely climb, and on from there were more climbs up White Law and Whitelaw Nick, as we opted for the high route to finish our walk. 

The last stretch saw us dropping down into Kirk Yeltholm, our final destination, via a soft green path strewn with cattle, sheep and their offspring, and then on to a quiet country lane. The Border Hotel suddenly loomed into sight as we came to the village green – our last stop on what has sometimes felt like the UK’s longest pub crawl. And to the pub we went, to claim our free half pint provided to those who complete the Pennine Way (thanks Scottish Borders Brewery) and get our certificate (naff, yet sort of sweet too) for having finished the walk.  

Tonight nine of us dined together, celebrating the end of our walk over food, drinks and a memorable ‘awards’ ceremony, hosted by Colin, which involved the downing of tequila shots and a lot of laughter. I’ve met some great, truly interesting people from all sorts of places and backgrounds on this trip, made new friendships and hopefully cemented some existing ones. Long distance walking throws together such random assortments of people, yet there is something about the sense of humour, desire to achieve and the sheer joy of spending hours outdoors pitting yourself against the challenges that geography and climate throw at you, that pulls us all together. Fellow Pennine Way Farers, it was my honour and my privilege to walk with you, whether for a few hours or days on end. 

Photos: Walking the border / view from   Auchope Cairn / nearing the end / certified!

       

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About silkakt

I'm a map addict. I nip out in my lunch break to go to the National Map Centre, just around the corner from where I work, to feed my habit. My fix normally costs £7.99 and comes in the form of an OS map, although I'm a big fan of Sustrans cycle maps, the Trailblazer walking guides and maps of the world too. And once I've got my new map, I start plotting - routes, adventures and an escape away from the office that I spend too much time in. Maps, quite simply, make the world a better and more exciting place.
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12 Responses to The Pennine Way, Day 17 

  1. PilgrimChris says:

    It was lovely to meet you on your epic journey and I won’t forget some of the times we shared. Meeting all the wonderful people along the way certainly made for a truly memorable Pennine Way adventure 🙂

  2. Jim says:

    Well done all

    Where next?

  3. Jim says:

    West Highland Way Start on a Saturday and with the limited number of stops by the end of the week your will be part of an extended family!! Beware the midges though

  4. Andy and Laura says:

    A quick very well done from Andy and Laura. Great effort! Will book some time and read the lot, always like to hear of your adventures. We still haven’t done the final 70 miles of the PW, its on the never ending list. Just back from The West Highland Way and off in a couple of weeks to the Peddars Way and North Norfolk Coast with the newly wed Joules and Steve. Well done again, fabulous effort xx

    • silkakt says:

      Lovely to hear from you – hope you’re both well, and pass on my congratulations to See and Joules! I’m off to walk the Hadrian’s Wall Path at the end of next week: given myself five days. Have you guys walked it?

      • Andy and Laura says:

        No, never really fancied it. Bumped into a tiny bit of it on the PW (we may have been lost) and that sort of put us off. Will be interested to hear how it goes. Our next monster will the Camino Portugues next year and then, just possibly, canoeing the Great Glen Way. Looking forward to reading about the Romans x

  5. Camerabootsandbells says:

    Reblogged this on Cameras Boots and Bells and commented:
    This makes me excited for completing the Pennine Way this year!! no where are my walking boots and rucksacks 🙂
    xx

    • silkakt says:

      Thank you so much for your comment and the re-blog; I appear to have a number of new followers as a result. Have a wonderful time completing the Pennine Way.

      • Camerabootsandbells says:

        No worries 🙂 I’m really looking forward to the challenge and the experience. It’s fantastic that you shared the whole journey.

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