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Alice Street

NC500 by NC700: Saturday 10/09

Howard and I were heading for yet another night of free accommodation, this time with his brother in Leeds. With nearly 300 miles to cover, we nonetheless managed to fit in several stops for tourism.

First was the Falkirk Wheel, a rotating boat lift which has transformed the transfer between the Forth & Clyde and the Union canal from a series of locks taking hours to navigate to a five-minute journey which is also energy-efficient and very, very cool. I took the trip up, round and down while Howard, who had done it before, enjoyed a coffee.

Near the border with England, tourist signs started to appear for the Scottish National Museum of Flight. We hadn't planned to stop here, but it was of course irresistible. Sited at the former RAF East Fortune airfield, it's a well presented and planned collection with lots of gems, including an Islander air ambulance and the Messerschmitt Komet flown by Eric ‘Winkle’ Brown.

The A1, a flat slog lower down the country, is very pleasant here, with sea views and overtaking opportunities. We left it briefly so we could ride the causeway to Lindisfarne. The tide rises to cover the road several times a day, making this a slightly scary prospect even though we carefully checked the tide timetable.

On the way back to the main road we encountered a much more real danger in a level crossing stuck with the gate half open and the red lights flashing. Howard used the telephone at the crossing and was told that the next train wouldn't be for 'a while', but 'I didn't tell you that'. We risked it.

The last stage of the journey was completed in the dark, a tiring slog down a busy motorway where it was hard to keep track of each other. We arrived at 8:30 to very welcome cheese on toast.

Miles: 284

Falkirk Wheel
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Comments

I really want to do the Falkirk Wheel one day. It's about the level of thrill ride I can stand!
Great views, too!
Yikes, a causeway where the tide comes up to it? Challenge accepted! XD
Yeah, that's what I thought! It's safe as long as you read the signs, but you wouldn't want to break down.
Yeah, especially on a causeway. DX
That's awfully spiffy. ^_^ Nifty in its own right, let alone considering what it replaced (well, sort of) - even now, if you navigate the Kennett & Avon canal, you'll run into some quite long lock systems at points.

They did miss a trick in not painting the arches in rainbow colors, though. ^_^
Represents the ribcage of a whale, apparently!