How many times have you done this walk with me, I wonder? It’s my favourite walk and so handy for me living where I do, practically on the river bank. I walked up the north side of the river, as I would if I was going to the Doctor’s or to Morag’s, past the cauld and up to the bridge that crosses the Cuddy Burn, where gulls, ducks and goosanders tend to congregate.
This is one of the goosanders, with his pointy brown crest very evident. A bit further on I looked back again towards Tweed bridge with Lee Pen in the distance. It was a bit of a grey day, but I still love that view.
Then there’s the long stretch that leads to the steps, and the old tree with rocks from the tumbledown wall in its trunk. At the top of the steps, the path turns left – you can just see the gap on the right of the picture – in front of the old Lodge belonging once to the Hay family, and down again to the river bank. There are masses of snowdrops along the next bit. I snapped just one clump!
Continuing along the river bank in the park now, I could see ahead of me the huge stump of a very old tree that must have been cut down a while ago. The roots made an interesting pattern, and on closer inspection I found various fungi growing in amongst the little crevices. They’re quite beautiful!
The end of the park is marked by the Jedder Burn. Cross the bridge and a little way ahead are the Dookits, a rocky outcrop being the spot where a diving board was once fixed. To dook, in Scots, is to go bathing – well, it does in this context, hence the name of this part of the river. It wouldn’t be safe to dive here now as the river has silted up, but I am sure kids still come here to play and swim.
Dogs and their owners do too. This dog was having fun chasing stones thrown for him. I walked on, feeling quite capable today of reaching Neidpath Castle, but the path had got rather mucky beyond the Dookits and I didn’t want to slip and have to walk home with a muddy backside! I took a photo of the castle which seemed to merge with the background on a day like today, and began to walk back to the Dookits,
passing, at a bit of a height, a rope swing hanging over the water. I expect a beautiful summer’s day will find the youth of Peebles having the time of their lives here – or maybe not, in these days of “health and safety”! How did the human race survive this long, I wonder, before health and safety rules came along!
Back to the footbridge then and this time I did cross it, to head back to Peebles on the south bank. On New Year’s day I took a picture from the bridge of the church tower and the different layers of grey. Today I took the same picture in brighter conditions, with a late ray of sun hitting the hillside.
I mentioned last time I walked this way that I wouldn’t mind ending up in a wee retirement flat here at Riverside! I think the middle floor, the bay window on the left…. What do you think? So back to Tweed Bridge – aren’t these lamps great? – cross the road for a view of Tweed Green,
over the bridge; turn right and I was home!
Not a twinge in the hip or knee today! Great!
Talk again soon.