Sunday, 22 April 2012

Day 12 - Stranraer to Carlisle

Actual Miles Driven Today - 236

The Craignelder Hotel Stranraer 
Today completed half way round in days, and My return to England for two days. Just enough to be here for St Georges Day on Monday. However, No special flag to fly.

My day began on a downer.

As I packed the car I realised that my Boat Bag containing my tonneau was missing. I racked my brain about when I last noticed it (it's Big & Heavy). 

No Joy so off to the local Police Station to report it missing and get my crime number. Then I remembered that yesterday at Inverary, as I was collecting donations from the Toyota MR2 Car Club, one of them said that a Traffic Warden was heading my way. 

So I bid them all farewell, hopped into the car and drove off towards Glasgow. The Boat Bag had been temporarily propped on the spare wheel and would have slid off of the side somewhere??

Some of the MR2's I met with at Inverary 

I am just hoing that one of the Toyota Drivers saw it and picked it up. 

If so It may still be recoverable. The lack of WiFi for the last two days has prevented me from making any searched for their contact.

I used Sunday 13th Morning to call into the Strathclyde Police Office to report the loss and after about half an hour they rang Ann at home to say that the bag was handed in to Inverary Police Station where it is now waiting to be collected. 

My good friend and R100 Register Colleague David Harris is going to help recover it back to my home for me while I carry on rolling.

 Leaving Stranraer

West of Stranraer the route would take me first to the North again and then across that peninsular before following the coast southwards to the Mull of Galloway.

From that Point I will travel north again before cutting eastwards towards the border and Carlisle.

Looking North to the Ayrshire Coast

More Straight Single Track Roads


Children on the Beach in the April Sunshine

My route today involved making a circuit of the 'The Rhins', the promontory on which Stranraer is located. 

Keeping with the anti clockwise plan I set out north skirting around the lanes until I came to the lovely small harbour of Portpatrick, with its mini golf and bowling greens alongside the harbour.

The East Coast

Photos taken, I was off again to find the east coast village of Sandhead where I was to turn south for the Mull of Galloway. 

Being me, I turned too soon finding myself in yet another single track road full of farmers droppings and gravel. 

There were no passing places so having had a close call with the Postie's Van I decided to turn around.

Port Logan
While at Sandhead a local man came over to chat and make a donation. 

He asked me if I was with the other Classics as a convoy lead by a Jaguar had gone south not long before I arrived. 

He explained the road layout to me so I set off on the right road this time.

Looking back from The Mull
The Mull of Galloway Lighthouse
Cafe & Souvenir Shop
The Mull of Galloway has a magnificent Lighthouse set high on the cliff top where a 360% view is available from Cumbria to Ireland and the Isle of Man. 

Just below is an excellent snack bar and souvenir shop all housed in a modern but tasteful building where I sat in the glorious sunshine with a Cappuccino and Fruit Scone.

Just One of a Convoy of Classic Cars
Beautiful E Type Jaguar

I was just about to leave for my route eastward when the classic came along the road to where I had stopped outside of the cafe. 

Eventually they gathered at the cafe where I was able to ask who they were. 

Their car club is the Veterans of Scottish Motorsports Club.

Isle of Whithorn Harbour
View across the Harbour

I had to return via Sandhead again before following the road until it met the A76 and then diverted southwards through the village of Port William to The Isle of Whithorn on Burrow Head.

I ate my packed lunch while overlooking the harbour where I met a couple from Carlisle who were out for a drive, trying to get away from the heavy rain to the east. 

Following their advice I put up the hood.

Heading Eastwards again

The rest of my day getting back to Carlisle became a rotten slog. 

It was not so much the rain that fell but the water from previous showers. 

The mixture of gravelly Single Track Roads with more Farmers Animal Dross all over the place. 

Two more near misses on blind corners was now making me nervous.

Braking on wet gravel is not the easiest way to take avoiding action when a Chelsea Tractor is on your side of the road on a blind bend.

Mucky Mog - Military Firing Range
The Rain Came as predicted.

The journey objective became a ' Just Get Me to Carlisle In One Piece' mission.

As I arrived on the outskirts of Carlisle I popped into the out of town Asda for a self service fuel fill and took a look at the state of the car. 

She was covered in gunge of every sort imaginable.

So, while I was at Asda, I decided to use their hand wash Karcher System for the first time to 'de muck' the now filthy 'Road Eater'.

Before the Asda Jet Wash
After at the Hotel

At least she looks respectable now for tomorrows trip to Poulton Le Fylde.

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