#Scotland 2015 Day 16 – Barnsley to Bankend

#Scotland 2015 – Sept 26, 2015

Since my leg gave me grief yesterday and wouldn’t allow me to walk all the way to the Barnsley Cemetery and back to the hotel, we headed straight here after breakfast. The weather cooperated and although the sun was in the wrong place for some of the photos, the architecture here was beautiful.

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Barnsley Cemetery
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Barnsley Cemetery
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Barnsley Cemetery

I could have spent a lot more time prowling around through here but I do have plenty of photos to be able to draw from (only a sample are here on the blog) when it comes time to sit down and write. We were booked in at Hutton Lodge near Dumfries that night so we had to get a move on.

The going was slow for a time because of the roadworks on the M1 (construction season here, too) but traffic still flowed smoothly. The motorways are great when you need to get from point A to point B in the shortest amount of time, but we much prefer the slower pace of the secondary roads.

The further away from Barnsley we got, the more overcast it became.

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The Pennines along the A66

As we approached the junction with the M6 motorway at Penrith, the police were at the scene of an accident. A guy had dumped his motorcycle and slid under the guardrail – his bike still wedged there. He was on a stretcher and two of the emergency responders held a blanket up blocking the view of the passersby. I figured he was dead and if not then, very soon.

Onto the M6 we went stopping at the Gretna Gateway Outlet Village – not to shop but to find a cashpoint because we needed cash and to use the toilets (what else is new?).

Before we got back on the road, hubby put the postcode for Hutton Lodge into Satnav Sally. The directions brought us in the back way (less traffic – yay!) but at an impossible angle to pull in the driveway to Hutton Lodge. At least we knew where it was so we could come back from the opposite direction and be able to pull in easily.

Now that we knew where our B&B was located, we could set out to explore. I had heard of Morton Castle from a friend who used to live in the area. It’s a Historic Scotland property so it was easy to find in the HS maps on our satnav. Driving there was a different story.

It would be really easy to miss the castle as it’s down below the hill. But we found it. Unfortunately, the ground was wet and muddy from previous rains.

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near Morton Castle
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Morton Castle
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Door in Morton Castle

The ‘club’ shaped window in the door was too high for me to be able to look out it to get my picture so I just held the camera up in the opening and clicked, having no idea what I would get. The photo below is the result of my efforts. Not bad, eh?

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Scene shot from the door in Morton Castle
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Location of the door from the outside of Morton Castle
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The Great Hall at Morton Castle

It was late enough now that we could return to Hutton Lodge and check in. The only traffic we saw on this road was a family with their dog, and a young girl on a horse. The horse was skittish so rather than spook it, I pulled over as far as I could and shut the car off until after they passed.

When we arrived at Hutton Lodge, our host helped us bring our luggage in and made us a reservation for supper at the Nith Hotel in Glencaple.

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Our room at Hutton Lodge
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Our room at Hutton Lodge
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Our room at Hutton Lodge

Once we were settled and I had wi-fi (had to purchase a BT Wi-Fi pass), I googled the accident we had seen earlier. The guy wasn’t dead after all, but had been airlifted to hospital in serious condition.

Our dinner reservations were for 7:30 but we knew if we stayed in our room much longer, we’d fall asleep so we took the chance that we could eat sooner than later and drove to the Nith Hotel.

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replica stones in the garden at Hutton Lodge
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Hutton Lodge

The only problem with leaving at this time of day, the sun was directly in my eyes all the way across the Glencaple Road. Thinking that our table wouldn’t be ready yet as we were about an hour early and the hotel was busy, after parking the car we took in the view and I got a few photos.

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Sun setting at Glencaple

It was busy in the restaurant but our table was ready. We were in the corner by the windows so we could look out over the Solway Firth. The meal was excellent and great value. Hubby had the gammon steak and I had seafood spaghetti.

Although not completely dark when we came out of the restaurant, the light was changing rapidly. This photo turned out brighter than it actually was.

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Sunset at Glencaple

By the time we got into the car and turned around to go back to the B&B it was pitch black – and even worse out on the narrow with passing places and no street lights. Some numptie behind me rode my back bumper making it almost impossible for me to see because of the shadow cast by our car in his headlights. First passing place I came to, I pulled in and let him go.

Even on high beams, the headlights weren’t that great. When we got back to Hutton Lodge, I snapped a quick photo of the moon before we rent up to our room and I had a couple of glasses of wine leftover from when we were in Kennethmont.

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Moon over Bankend

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