Monday, 18 November 2013

Thursday, 25 July 2013

The end and home

I am sorry I did not keep up with this blog, it proved almost impossible with the phone and the website so I just got plain fed up with it all. The SOuh west coast was very hard, it provides more ascent than any other section of the trip. The section from Barnstaple to Bude is very tough but we managed is all in a couple of days. Midge of course found is no more difficult than a walk in the park. He was a mazing on the sea cliffs, with a 500 ft drop on one side he trotted along confidently, he knows exactly where the clif edge is by using his ears and a sense of the wind, at one time there was a sudden gust of wind and Midge instinctively jumped to his left away from the edge - he thought he had got a little too close for comfort. The weather was kind to us apart from a couple of days of thick sea fog when even I had difficulty finding the cliff edges! I was very sad on the penultimate day and really did not want to get started, if I started it meant I was going to complete the route. I almost felt like giving up so I would not have completed the trip and would have the prospect of having to start again and do it all over. We completed on Sunday June 30th at 12.50. My wife Carol was there to record the event and then we celebrated with a Cornish cream tea which Carol had brought with her and special biscuits for Midge. Following this we spent a few days in Cornwall - walking- What else! We have been home for over 3 weeks now and things are strange. Midge is hyperactive and wonders why we cannot go for such long walks everyday and why he has to sleep downstairs and not next to me. It was a great trip and I promise I will write the whole thing up with pictures soon. Regards Paul and Midge

Friday, 21 June 2013

on the SWCP

In Barnstaple. Hard work on exmoor due to lousy weather. Now on SWCP hard going to come buth only 200 miles to go . I wish this blog had worked with this phone but see Paul Watson on Facebook. Also please visit our justgiving page

Friday, 14 June 2013

To the south west

Blog keeps freezing me out, sorry! now near Slimbridge and start on the Cotswold way tomorrow. Did not enjoy the Severn way, the towns are lovely but the route is through high wet grass very awkward to walk through Looking forward to getting on the coast.

Tuesday, 11 June 2013

down the canals to the Severn

We.have travelled the midlands on the river Severn. The weather has change butewe are 800 miles done so only 400 to do! We both are well and really fired up to complete this. Midge did not like wolverhampton but he always has been w sensible dog.

Thursday, 6 June 2013

The whole story

Just to let you readers know I will be writing up the whole trip with photos when we hrt back

Almost like cheating!

Peninne way completed! Lovely dry sunny weather from Hawes to Edale. The notorious bogs were almost dry and I finished with clean boots. It was almost like cheating! Midge had problems on the rocky ground because of his blindness but he it a determined lad. We are now on easy ground for the next week or so en route to the river Severn.

Monday, 3 June 2013

nearing the end of the Peninne Way

nearly finished the Pennine Way, weather hot! Loving it all. midge I'd learning all the possible permutations of stiles. Here is an exercise for you; go on your favorite walk blindfold see how you get on. Imagine that for 660 miles, that I'd what Midge has done

Thursday, 30 May 2013

Gloomy pennines

Mixed weather since I last blogged. Met wife Carol at tan hill, first time in a month! Gloomy typical pennine weather, misty wet underfoot. Now in wensleydale doing our Wallace and Gromit impressions. To Horton tomorrow.

Friday, 24 May 2013

back in England!!

We crossed over the border at 12.30 yesterday. We had a great night at Forest View in Byrness. What a place! As near perfect as could be Thanks Colin and Joyce. ! Severe weather continues, no electricity in forest view due to storms this morning. Very cold here in Bellingham. Lovely meal with fellow walker this evening- thanks!!! Onwards tomorrow.

Wednesday, 22 May 2013

Heading for the border

We will.hit the peninne way tomorrow. We.have had mixed weather, one night we had an incredible storm, the campsite flooded and we narrowly missed being washed out. Today I was able to pack up a dry.tent for.the first time. We are in jedburgh after some lovely walking through the border towns of Peebles, Melrose and Innerleithin. Back in England around midday tomorrow after 3 weeks and 450 miles in Scotland. Midge had a period of illness in Peebles but the great folks at Two rivers vet practice sorted him out and did not charge us for the consultation. They even made a donation through our justgiving site. talking of which we have raised over £900 so far

Sunday, 19 May 2013

Not blogged for a few days, the weather was good from drymen to kilsyth, then OK to linlithgow

Thursday, 16 May 2013

Lap of luxury

Staying in an amazon bnb tonight, the people thought that midge and I might enjoy a little extra space after the tent. We have a log cabin all to ourselves, it is so smart. Back to.the.tent tomorrow. we had our photo taken for the Scottish Sun and an article will appear on Sunday. I hope this raises more cash. The walking was long but easy today along old railways and the canal. More of the same tomorrow. Really looking forward to the peninne way.

Tuesday, 14 May 2013

end of the WHW

Sorry for not. Posting for so long. This is mainly because of the lousy blogsite. we have just got through 100 hours of rain sleet and snow. Loads of people gave up In bridge of orchy,.they were only doing the west.highland way. When we got views they were sensational like the.highlands in January. tomorrow we complete the WHW and cross the industrial heart of Scotland. Really looking forward to the pennine way. I am surprised at how fit I feel!

Saturday, 11 May 2013

interesting in kinlochleven

We have been promised a.week of rain, which is no fun with a wet collie and a small tent.. Snow has been forecast once again. Now in kinlochleven caught a Jacobite society do. It promises to be lively. Wish us better weather.

Friday, 10 May 2013

GGW done WHW tomorrow!

WE: Sorry I have not blogged for a while but the phone and the website do not like each other. We are now in Fort William, having had to slow down in order to get in to our pre booked bnb. The weather has been kind but now is rainy. we had a great wild camp last night and woke up to a blue sky and a perfect view of a snow covered Ben Nevis. We start the West highland way in the morning. We are both fit. Off for a beer . Thanks to; Aussies Brent and Sue Balchin and Dawn Harkness for donations to Hounds for Heroes. You can also donate through our justgiving page Paul and Midge

Monday, 6 May 2013


Thank you to the following who have given money directly, this will appear on our just giving page as various Keith Cashner the lovely people at the clachnaharry inn Pamela maclennan. Thanks Also thanks to the fantasticj Corran guest house who were exceptional.

Sunday, 5 May 2013

Lovely time in Lairg. Nice walk over tracks including the Carnegie road which is new to me. the sleet started with am hour to camp and we were soaked. Pitched and made it to a pub. ?bloke refuse us entry.I reasoned, begged and blackmailed but no go. We made it back to the tent, midge was soaked and shivered so much I wrapped him: in a survival blanket. The sleet stopped at 1am. We got up early and carried on. We cut our journey to inverness and completed that today in sunshine. In a b nb now excellent. On to the GGW in the am.

Thursday, 2 May 2013

wind snow hail

The weather has been rough. Even when the sun does shine the 30 to 50 mph winds are exhausting.. One night the snow and hail froze the tent to they ground. Even so we are making great progess I spent my birthday, yesterday, in a fantastic bothy with views of snowy peaks. It had a stove ,And I had whisky what could be better? Midge is in fine form but nonstop, always wanting to play even after 20 miles in a headwind. it is tough but we are enjoying it.

Sunday, 28 April 2013

first full day (almost)

First full day. Well nearly full we finished by 1.30. The b n b was OK , but the Irish builders staying there walked around like they were wearing boots even in bare feet The weather was wet windy and very cold. We left around 8.30 and had a long boring slog with much road lightened only by a chat with a lady and her collie. I gave midge the chance of a swim in loch watten to clean him up. We had a beer in the trout hotel and returned there for good food. Shame about the beer. Last night's beer was good in the seaview. This will be the last blog for a few days as we pass out of radio contact. Long day tomorrow with lousy forecast.:

Saturday, 27 April 2013

the start at last. John O'Groats

TPlease bear with me as my phone and this site don't go well together. Midge and I are in john O'Groats we have been to Duncansby head so have done the first 2miles. Midge had a good journey for a dog who hates travelling mainly because of all the fuss he got Our b n b is basic but good and the great news is they have Orkney beers on down the road.
o;TWE:We are on our wa to John O'Groats and spend,ing the night in inverness after a lovely week in in Northumberland. Midge does in;ot like inverness there are no dog friendly pubs and no decent parks. We are sitti?ng outside while I get fed. It is cold but I h;:ave a good beer in hand. Looking forward took getting started. Snow and gales forecast.

Monday, 18 February 2013


Midge and I are walking from John O’Groats to Lands’ End We start at the end of April 2013. I suppose this is really the culmination of many things not least the fact that  we have done many long distance walks that this seemed to be the obvious next step. Some of you will have read our previous travels over the last 6 years
Midge is blind as a result of a progressive retinal atrophy which has been going on for many years but he covered it up really well until about 18months ago so I could not really put off this project any longer, he is still young enough to cope with both the walking and his blindness. He loves his walks and loves visiting new places and meeting new people. I have treasured my backpacking trips with him so this is our ultimate big adventure together.

We are raising funds for Hounds for Heroes who provide assistance dogs for injured military and service personnel. You can donate here:

 I thought it entirely appropriate for Midge. He loves people and seems to have an incredible empathy for folks. The fact that he is blind and the way he has adapted and thrived despite his blindness has made him real hero in his own right so this charity just right for him. By an amazing coincidence his vets’ practice Oakham Veterinary Hospital  is also supporting this charity in 2013. I know a lot of well-paid people out there I only hope I can persuade them to part with some money to support this charity.
Let me tell you about the wonderful boy that is Midge. Midge came to us from the wonderful Wiccaweys Rescued Border Collies eight years ago. He was it would seem, an unwanted Christmas present judging by the day of his birth and his first vet injections. He was a very confused lunatic youngster of 7 months when we got him, a live wire of a collie who had never received any training and who demonstrated the ADHD/OCD of an untrained border collie. He was hard going. However, he is probably the most intelligent dog I have ever known and took to training with a desire and soon literally knew all the tricks in the book. If you want to read more about Midge and I please look at our earlier trips documented on this website.
We will be following a route across the Flow Country of Scotland to Lairg, thence to Inverness, down the Great Glen, along the West Highland Way eventually linking up to the Pennine Way, down the Midlands to the Costswold Way via the River Severn and then linking up with the South West Coast Footpath. If you would like to walk a section with us contact us!