It was raining in Helmsdale as Steve Robertson left on the next leg of his charity Jogle, pausing only to snap this picture of the harbour. John O’Groats is a fading memory and Land’s End a distant dream.
But I do get the impression, here in Blogle towers, that my brother is now settling into his routine. I’m receiving messages and pictures here, courtesy of the world wide interwotsit, showing places of interest, scenic views and downright quirky sightings he happens to stumble across.
For instance this stone is inscribed, ‘TO MARK THE PLACE NEAR WHICH (According to “Scropes Art of Deerstalking”) THE LAST WOLF IN SUTHERLAND WAS KILLED BY THE HUNTER, POLSON, IN OR ABOUT THE YEAR 1700.’ I’ve no doubt that the brave hunter also posed for a selfie oil painting of himself and his bloodied trophy in a manner similar to big game heroes of today.
Coming across an abandoned petrol station near Brora our eagle eyed Jogler noticed blackbird chicks nesting in the void above the nozzle of the closest pump.
After snapping the war memorial clock tower alongside the Brora river, Steve stopped in at Linda’s Cafe for his lunch, Jogled past Brora Rangers footie ground with a capacity of 4000
(a tad optimistic as the Highland village has only just over a thousand residents – best hope the away team is very well supported, eh?)
Then in the same village, more quirkiness as witnessed by this Land Rover wheel arch window box.
The origins of this Iron Age ‘broch’, or drystone hollow wall structure, at Carn Liath are unclear, but archaeologists class them as ‘complex Atlantic roundhouses.’ (Stick with us folks, this is better than the Open University!
A mile out of his final destination of Golspie, Steve passed by @Dunrobin_Castle, the most northerly and largest of the Scottish Highlands great houses. Formerly the home the Dukes of Sutherland it has seen time as a naval hospital during the First World War and as a boys boarding school in the ‘60’s and ‘70’s. It is now open to the public for six months of the year, April to October.
And in contrast to the dismal start, the Jogler was able to enjoy the evening sunshine down by Golspie harbour.
Day 4 stats for the nerds among us,
Mileage 17.9 along the A9 giving a total of 75.83 steps 34,711 so grand totals to date are 75.83 miles and 143,499 steps (Blimey – no wonder he’s always eating!)
And he took 5 hours, 33 minutes and 55 seconds to complete the journey, which is hardly surprising given all the sightseeing.
Next stop Tain, wherever that is – see you all there!
In the meantime, please visit his just giving page for this walk in aid of Macmillan Cancer Support at http://bit.ly/2Tzmjwi