After a beautiful sunny day yesterday, it turned wet overnight and remained wet for most of the day. We can’t really complain as it was our first really wet day since day four.
Our route out of Jedburgh followed The St Cuthberts Way, which runs from Melrose to Holy Island in Northumberland . The route follows Dere Street in some parts, so more long straight stretches at times. At other times we followed the course of the River Tweed.
On the whole, easy walking except for one short stretch which we were able to avoid thanks to local knowledge. We met a couple walking out of the woods, who had struggled to get up a hill and they warned us how treacherous the path was, so we decided to stop and get out our walking poles. Just as we were about to set off again a local lady came along and warned us again and told us about a diversion to avoid the slope, apparently the diversion had been marked until quite recently, but for some reason the signs had been moved. We were glad we did, because even the diversion was slippery, but not quite as steep.
Along the way we passed Lilliot Cross. Between 1372 & 1382, the Scottish and English crowns used to meet there to resolve disputes, rather than fighting. These meetings weren’t always a success, in August 1388 the Battle of Otterburn took place.
We didn’t manage to find any tea shops to escape the rain en route, so after a quick stop in St Newtons we left the St Cuthberts Way, and followed a cycle route the last few miles into Melrose. A lower lever route than the St Cuthberts Way which would have taken through low cloud.
We had originally planned to camp in Melrose, but the campsite didn’t open to tents until the 18th May. Given the weather we were pleased to have booked into the Station Hotel. An early finish, so plenty of time to dry our kit out.