Sunday, 26 August 2007

Halfway to Scotland

Days 91 to 110
Sun 05 to Wed 22 Aug

Apologies for how late this blog is - I've been having trouble getting signal for the Internet!

This is just a quick recap blog to get back up to speed and it needs to cover a few points:

Good points:
  1. My GPS reads 2207km so I'm now over half-way - yippee!
  2. I'm in Scotland!
  3. I have a new trip mascot - Marty the Martian
  4. It's sunny!
  5. The scenery is stunning and getting better all the time
  6. I'm away from Blackpool (sorry if you live there)
Bad points:
  1. I'm badly behind time
  2. The boat's leaking a bit again
  3. My VHF radio is on the blink
So how do I turn the bad into good? Well... I've repaired the VHF using wire wool (yay!) and found the leaks in the boat.

The time issue however still looms. I got Rhianon (my long suffering RAF officer girlfriend) to check with her squadron's weathermen and their crystal balls and the news wasn't promising. Low pressures are expected for the next six to 10 days with NW Scotland bearing the brunt.

Because of this, and the fact I'm so far behind, I've made a difficult decision - to take the Caledonia canal and bypass Cape Wrath.

This will save me time and hopefully mean I don't get too badly behind due to weather.

I hate this idea - it feels like a complete failure as although I can still go round all of England and Wales, the UK circumnavigation is out. Sadly I'm just lagging so far behind though and I feel I can't risk the whole effort.

Worse still I miss an area of fantastic paddling that I'd really been looking forward to.

In a word: bugger.

To end this on a good note, I need to once again thank a whole list of people who have been fantastically supportive in Scotland. From Pete - a folk-singing Liverpudlian and friend of Nigel Dennis who I met in Whithorn - to Sally and the gang at The Ship Inn who looked after me so well in Drummore.

Until next time... (Hopefully with more good news.)

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