After far too long I'm heading back to Scotland with my bike.
It's also the first time I've been on a train in over 6 months.
I finalised packing of my bike panniers then set off at 07:20am
for Preston Railway Station. I arrived around 08:05 and followed
rules about going onto the station platforms with my facemask. I
was surprised how deserted it was at a time when it used to be
packed with people. I'd pre-bought a single ticket to Lockerbie
which cost £13.55. I checken on-line this morning and it is
listed as £11.40.
Preston Railway Station
We have a train but no driver.
The train was due out at 09:00 from platform 5 but when got
there a rail attendant said the train wasn't coming from
Liverpool Lime Street as scheduled but was actually in the
staton waiting for a driver. The notice screen said delayed and
leaving at 09:10. I could have booked on the 09:04 to Edinburgh
which also stops at Lockerbie and that left on time. My train
eventually left at 09:17am but was traveling slow all the way to
Penrith as we were stuck behind a freight train. It was 10:53
when we arrived at Lockerbie.
Lockerbie Rail Station.
I don't have too long a stage ahead so it wasn't a problem. The
temperature was pleasant but the wind was rather strong. I put
my helmet on a platform bench and it blew from one end to the
other. As I cycled out to the east I stopped by a Spar shop to
see if they had snacks. With my mask on I went inside but was
told it was closed for a while as they were taking a delivery. I
continued on the B7068 Tundergarth Road. There was a steep climb
at the start and the following miles were a succession of long
climbs & descents.
My first objective was after 5km when just below the top of a
climb I came to Tundergarth Church on the right. Directly across
the road is an open field with a fence line and gate on the
horizon. This is where the cockpit section of the PanAm Jumbo
Jet crashed 21 Dec 1988 after a bomb blew up the plane. Pan Am
Flight 103 'Clipper Maid of the Seas'. It is generally known as
the Lockerbie Air crash as that is where most of the wreckage
landed including an engine that created a crater by the A74, now
the M74. I continued east into what seemed like a strengthening
The same view today from Tudergarth Church.
Clipper Maid of the Seas
crashed 21 December 1988
Remembrance Room in foreground
is now locked.
Water of Milk.
By the road was a dead fox which didn't seem to be unduly
damaged by being hit and still retained its beautiful brown/red
fur colour. I continued to Paddockholes and turned left onto the
minor road over a stone bridge. Very soon I turned right to head
northeast along the interestingly named Water of Milk. There
soon came a flat section of road but I couldn't enjoy it due to
the strong headwind. There were many new vehicle passing places
along the single track road and some signs relating to wind
farms. Away in the distance I could see a large cluster of
portacabins and new access roads. Presumably this is the area
where the wind farms are to be constructed. I was thankful to
reach the road junction at Bailiehill where there is an
information board for a nearby Hillfort followed by a descent to
the bridge where Black Esk and White Esk join to make the River
Water cistern by the road.
Water cistern by the road.
The road then went into the forest but there wasn't as much
shelter from the wind as I'd hoped.cross from the area called
Castle O'er was a stone cistern by the road. I peered inside to
see a vaulted chamber with clear water in the bottom. Presumably
it was the local water supply. I emerged from the forest into
the open valley and soon reached Eskdalemuir where I stopped at
the Community Hub Cafe & Village Hall building. I knew it would
be closed but by the toilet block at the rear is a water tap
labeled Drinking Water.
I filled my water containers and continued cycling north to
a group of trees in a field to the left. I've camped here in the
past and this was to be my camp tonight. I went through the gate
and pushed my bike through then up behind a wall where I
couldn't be seen from the road. Later in the afternoon and
evening it became very windy.
Camp 1 Eskdalemuir.