day 6

Sunday 23rd June 2013

Another early start today, as I knew it would be long and wanted to be in Moffat by early afternoon to meet up with family. Headed into Carlisle and picked up route 7/10 which was actually well-signed and made getting through the city fairly painless. Being early on a Sunday morning probably helped.


A proper road sign! Not hidden in a hedge or pointing ambiguously around a post.

I stopped to take a photo of my bike with the sign marking the border (which is the River Sark) and had just got my camera out when another cyclist showed up and offered to take one with me in. I took a couple of him too and sent them when I got back. He was doing a supported LEJOG, his wife and son were packing up the tent back at their campsite. He was headed a different way, to Dumfries and Cumnock, while I took route 74 towards Lockerbie.


How flattering.

The wind was against me now - payback for yesterday - but as I was going north west for a short time I thought it would improve a little after Lockerbie. This was a rather false hope, and in fact the wind direction seemed to constantly change over the next couple of days so that I was always riding into it.

I stopped briefly in Lockerbie to make final meeting-up arrangements, and noticed that Tesco's gents toilet there has a condom machine - I suppose you never know when you are going to get lucky. The way up to Moffat was fairly uninspiring. I arrived spot on 2 pm, having got quite used to judging speed from the map now. In a break with tradition my parents weren't late, and after some exclamations about the weight of all my stuff we went into the nearest cafe.
DSC_6239_small.jpg IMGP0054_small.jpg

Parents and siblings minus one.

IMGP0059_small.jpg IMGP0060_small.jpg

Leaving Moffat.

The rest of the day turned out to be a real effort, into a strong wind and uphill to over 1000 ft at Beattock summit. It's a nice quiet road, again following the motorway (M74). There was quite a bit of motorway and A-road following over the trip and it's more pleasant than it sounds and gives quite a different perspective to a journey which is otherwise very familiar.


The open road.

Crossing the motorway I caught up with a man and his daughter who had come from Lands End. They had a B+B booked in Lanark that night but were really struggling with the wind and didn't think they'd make it. They were looking for a train station, but despite the proximity of the west coast main line there aren't any stations around here, but I thought they'd probably be able to find accommodation in Abington. I was hoping to find a campsite in Crawford myself, and it would have been a great spot for one, by the Clyde, but there was no sign of anything. I was really tired by now, and required a two-eccles-cake stop. I pushed on to Abington and saw signs to a campsite just outside town. As if confirmation were needed that I had had enough by this point, something caught my eye in a field to my left and my instinctive assumption was that it was an enormous guinea pig.

The owner of the campsite was a little harassed, if not by cyclists arriving when she was probably trying to have her dinner, then by the midges which she said were in her hair. I expressed surprise that there were many about with the wind, and she acknowledged that there was a "wee breeze". I soon discovered that the campsite was right next to the railway line, but either there weren't many trains during the night or I was too knackered to notice.

66 miles - View route - download .gpx