full list

"End to End via the Margins"
-the diary of a walk.

- Drymen to Rowardennan


The address of the place I stay tonight is ... "by Drymen" ... so, all that walking and I'm still in the same place. However I am now on the banks of Loch Lomond... which has its compensations.

It was indeed a hard day, not particularly far, but with quite a few short ups and downs which may not even have registered in my planning, and a longish one round Conic Hill, which unfortunately I got excited about and went up too quick. Early in the day I was about half way in the range of walking speed, but by the end I was once again slowest. Lots of people round here are impressively fit.

Today has been the Day Of The Walking Stick. I thought I might need one to steady myself on the slithery bits tomorrow, so bought one in Drymen. Never having used a stick before, I practised on the descent from Conic Hill, and liked the idea so much that I used it for most of the rest of the day. It gave another option for keeping dodgy toes out of trouble. And it reminded me of Gandhi - not that anyone would ever confuse the two of us! Sometimes I would just "mark", other times I put real weight on it. The sensation seemed to me a bit like punting. The stick, of course, opens up a whole new land of metaphors. Yes, they do mean something, it's just that we've got out of the habit of travelling with an oaken staff. "My faith is like an American Express Card, the traveller's well loved aid" doesn't have quite the same ring to it.

Fragments of the day... The damp forest path steaming in the morning sun, exiting the forest into the sunshine and the sound of larks, litter pickers keeping the West Highland Way tidy, a cuckoo, rock like pudding, with fairly substantial rocks inside it (or was it just concrete?), primroses (again!).

Pictures from today...
Me with poppies in the garden of the B&B in Drymen
Distant highlands
Tadpoles in Garadbhan Forest
Showers and Loch Lomond
Ben Lomond, the most southerly Munro - my bag will be empty this trip
Twockers come to the Bonnie, Bonnie Banks
Trees felled by a gale
Rowardennan Memorial and a bit of ?Arrochar Alps?
God, we pray for travellers,
may they come safe and happy to their destinations.
And where they do not yet know the destination,
may they find the place they always wanted to find.
When we have choices of direction,
let us choose the true and living way,
and so fulfill [sp?] the law of Christ.

© Bob Warwicker. The words here may be reproduced freely, but not for gain, or without attribution. All alterations must have the permission of the author.