Yesterdays 80+ kilometres stage – the longest of the current trip – was a relentless repechage across the rolling Aberdeenshire countryside. Several early sections were along a disused railway, affording long-distance views to the Cairngorms, way over to the west. Lunch was taken at Tarves before a tough afternoon – punctuated by tea at Maud – brought us to our over-night stop at Turriff. Amidst the ‘blood, sweat and tears’, we did manage to add a couple of birds to the list – a calling Curlew and, at one point, a little ‘hot-spot’ of Corn Bunting. Returning to our digs after super, on the banks of the local burn, a very obliging and unexpected Spotted Flycatcher.
We’ve spent much of yesterday evening and this morning considering the implications for the national rail strike, which looks ever more likely to go ahead now. Being stuck at ‘the top end’ without a means of getting back had us seriously considering aborting the whole thing but, every resourceful and resilient, we may have come up with a Plan B!