Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Tuesday, August 26, 2008
We are walking! After traveling, sightseeing and visiting the Roman Fort Museum in Newcastle we left Wallsend at 9:45 am.
Heading down a dismantled railway, now a path bordered with wildflowers, hawthorne, holly and blackberries, Vicki and I walked through an industrial area, including
the Swan Hunter, an old and current shipbuilder,
old coal shafts,
past part of Hadrian's Roman Wall,
a scrap metal yard
a Riverfront park along the Tyne River.

Through St. Peter's Marina lined with boats and exclusive apartments.
Under seven bridges, one upon the Roman foundations of 122AD, and the latest is the Millineum Bridge, completed in 2002.

Past the Castle Garth, medieval shops, new glass buildings,
an office park where we had a sandwich at a deli.
All this along the River Tyne.

Then through a park with football fields, cricket pitch, playground and we are in the country by 2:30 pm.

Still along the Tyne River, now bordered by small patch-work green fields with dairy cows, sheep, black and white horses.

About mile 14 we turn up from the river, through a golf course.
Here I take out my new trekking poles to head up to Hedden-on-the-Wall and our

The last mile and a half were through a green forest on a mossy, soft path.
Arriving at North Bank Farm at 5:30 pm, we are greeted by several small dogs, three children and our hostess, Pam.

She makes us tea, her mother-in-law comes in to join her talking and joking with us.
Pam offers to drive us to the White Swan for dinner, about a 7-minute walk away. Probably because she took pity on our tired faces.

After showering, washing out my day's laundry, Pam loads us in her pickup. On the way there we stop to admire the neighbor's 10-day old colt, a black and white pony named Maggie May.
Telling us her story, Pam married her husband in 1991, and has lived at the farm ever since. They run about 200-head of cattle, a few sheep, started the B&B in 2003, and has not had a decent vacation since marrying. It's hard to get away from a farm. Her husband's family has owned it for six generations. The buildings are local stone and it is totally charming with lots of flowers, kids, the grandmother and small dogs everywhere.

White Swan Carvery dinner. (or why I walk and travel)
Sliced roast beef with gravy and Yorkshire pudding, several well-cooked vegetables, a Strawberry Eaton Mess (fresh strawberry mixed with chopped meragine, mixed with whipped cream, all smothering vanilla ice cream), a cup of tea. Now life is good and we amble back to the farm.

I loved the walk through Newcastle and into the country side. From the back of the White Swan we could see the lights on the bridges over Newcastle, the sixth largest city in England.

Onward, Tyler

Monday, August 25, 2008

Newcastle, England

Sunday, August 25. Morning train ride on Sunday from London to Newcastle.
*Church spires sprouting out of small villages
*Swans in streams
*Green fields bordered by hedges
*Jersey and honey-colored milk cow herds
*Two nuclear power plants

Check in at 1 pm at a Victorian Townhouse. Charming Youth Hostel.
Take metro to South Shields, walk to the Arbeia Fort, built by the Romans to guard the entry from the North Sea up the Tyne River.
Fort facts
*Partially restored fort with the commanding officer's home, barracks for the calvary and horse stables.
*Artifacts excavated from the site, including pre-historic arrowheads, through bronze age to the Roman occupation.

Walked to the pedestrian ferry for a trip across the Tyne River.
*Two ocean liners were on the river, one was the 'King of Scandanavia'.
*A big river and once had a huge shipyard.

Walked to the metro, went dinner and bed.

Monday, August 26
Metro ride to Wallsend.
*Segendum Fort, built by Roman Emperer Hadrian in 122AD.
*Museum of artifacts recovered. Pot chards, small lead god of Mercury, bones from garbage, stone tools to grind grain.
*Original stones of the fort are visible, forming the fort, barracks, officer's home, hospital.

Sunday, August 24, 2008

Arrived Safely in London

A tail wind from Seattle to London made the 10 hour flight only 9 1/2 hours. We left Seattle at 11 pm on Friday, arrived at Heathrow at 4;30 pm and by 7 pm I was eating tomato soup with roasted red pepper, a roll, then chicken breast, new potatoes, salad and a Belgium beer, Stella Artois for only 7.95 at the youth hostel. Delicious. Then strolled the charming neighborhood around King's Cross neighborhood.

Vicki, my travel companion, and I are ready to get the 9:30 train from King's Cross to Newcastle, arriving at 12;25 pm.

Feel not too bad after the transatlantic flight, a good night's rest and a hearty breakfast.


Sunday, August 17, 2008

Walk With Me, Tyler Burgess's Itinerary 2008

Here is my plan
Take train to Seattle August 19, 2008. Visit children and grandchildren.
Friday, August 22, Fly from Seattle (leave 10:55 pm) to London (arrive 5:30 pm), with Vicki, my companion and client for the England walk on Hadrian's Wall Path.

Hike Hadrian's Wall Path, 84 miles
August 24. Train from London to Newcastle Upon Tyne.
August 25. Day in Newcastle to visit the Museum of Antiquities to see artifacts and history of Roman Emperor's Wall, built to keep out the barbarians to the north.
August 26. Walk Newcastle to Heddon, 15 urban miles through Newcastle
August 27. Walk Heddon to St. Oswald, 12 miles into the rolling countryside.

August 28. From St. Oswald to Once Brewed, 15 miles, plus an hour to walk into Haltwhistle.
August 29. Rest in Haltwhistle, a market town smack in the middle of Britian.
August 30. An hour walk back to Once Brewed, then 11 miles to Gilsland.
August 31. Walk 7 miles to Walton.
September 1. Walk to Carlisle, 11 miles.
September 2. Carlisle to Bowness On Solway, 15 flat miles to the Irish Sea.

September 3. Train to London.
September 4-7 Visit London. High Tea at the Ritz on 9/4.
September 8. Vicki flies back to Eugene. I fly to Barritz, France.

Solo 500-mile hike the Pilgrim's Path Way of St. James on the French Way
500 miles from the French border to Santiago, Spain. I am taking ultra-light camping gear, and carrying all my stuff in a day pack.
September 8. I fly to Barritz, France. Train ride one hour to St. Jean Pied de Pont.
September 9. Start hiking to Santiago, about 15 mile per day for 35 days.
October 14, Fly from Santiago, Spain to London, England.
October 15. Fly from London to Seattle.
October 19. Train from Seattle to Eugene, arriving at 1:55 pm in Eugene.

I do hope to update you along the trail where there are cafes and libraries with Internet access.