Day 53 Stonehaven to Aberdeen
To be honest, I find it hard to believe that we have walked from Shrewsbury to Aberdeen. In addition, I find it hard to believe that we have walked from Ponte Caffaro to Aberdeen.
Breakfast for me is quite an important meal. The smoked haddock was very good and the poached eggs weren’t too shabby either. We knew that today’s stroll might be longish and that we might need to amend the route as we went along so I wanted to have plenty of fuel in the tank.
Getting out of Stonehaven was something of a puzzle but a B road presented itself as a possible, no, the only candidate.
The new Aberdeen bypass is beginning to make itself felt on the landscape around Stonehaven so we encountered some road works as we approached the A92. Once on to our chosen B road the hoped for tranquillity was not to be.The frequent traffic made life quite difficult for us. We started to try to work out a system of thanks for those taking the trouble to avoid our fragile forms. Those who made a great detour to avoid us got a rousing wave of thanks, those who acknowledged that we had made an effort ourselves to get out of the way got a thumbs up and so on. Those who pretended that there were no pedestrians on the road got a simmering glance of distain.
Everything ends in the end as did this passage of stroll. Once off our challenging B road we found our last two mint imperials, saved for a special occasion, and ate them grateful for deliverance from the motor car. We did notice that BMW, Mercedes and Bentley drivers were considerate to a fault.
The time came when we needed to cross the A90, a busy dual carriageway. The hoped for bridge did not materialise but having crossed the Hog’s Back in Surrey we felt able to judge the moment and leg it at high speed across this river of metal barring our progress.
Coming out of Port Lethen we spotted a nice track leading down to the railway station. It looked as though it would cut off some mileage. The start was very promising indeed being a lovely path to the station. Afterwards the path became more overgrown. By now we were committed to our course so pressed on with nettled ankles to spur us on.
Small, interesting, roads took us onwards. The weather forecast had been for good weather with the possibility of showers but the clouds seemed to be gathering or, in the language of meteorologists, becoming more organised. Thankfully for us they failed to organise a shower but just lurked darkly overhead.
After some 14 miles or so we started to flag. Janet spotted that there was a pub in Cove Bay. On arrival in Cove Bay we had to make quite a decision. Our proposed path led along the railway line. The railway station was quite high up the village. The pub was near to the shore so quite low down. Do we expend our waning energy finding out it the pub is open, then having to climb back up to the station, or do we carry on? Good sense prevailed and we found that the pub was open and would sell us puddings and tea. A massive bowl of sticky toffee pudding would revive anyone. To be honest I needed a few miles of stroll in order to get back up to speed after this calorific overdose
One of our guides these last days has been cycle track No 1. We intended to follow this beacon into Aberdeen but were sorely disappointed to find that, as it left Cove Bay, it really wasn’t safe for pedestrians. The road was narrow, busy and there was nowhere for the timid stroller to get out of the way of traffic. What a stroke of luck then that Aberdeenshire has created a cliff top stroll into Nigg Bay. The message that it is a slippery and dangerous path seemed overly dramatic, especially when compared to the road. So off we gratefully trotted along the cliffs into Aberdeen. A longer route but a safer and more interesting route.
The internet has decided that enough is enough and has gone to sleep for today. Perhaps I should do the same. Today has been much much more interesting than I could possibly have expected or hoped. It was longer than expected by about 2 miles bt was muchu better for that. Now we are on the home straight.
Tomorrow we have a day of rest. A day to plan and to finish this nonsense with a working internet.