Leader Andy chose a good day for this rare foray for the Group into Scotland. It was sunny and warm as seven of us left the Dykecrofts visitor centre car park near Newcastleton to walk the mainly well way-marked Cross Border route. Billed at 18 miles we initially climbed gradually alongside the Priesthill Burn enjoying fine views on our left to the hills above Langholm. The day's high point was soon reached at a prominent mast where notices threatened forensic tagging if we trespassed!


Descending gradually we soon reached the first Border crossing at the Bloody Bush toll stone where fees for passage were levied on a sliding scale depending on the type of livestock involved. The trees looked remarkably similar back in England and we reckoned that there must be at least a million of them for each of the forty years that the LDWA has been in existence!


Attempts to follow the route after Willowbog were beaten back twice by both dense forest and wind blown trees. Finally back on course we were in no mood to heed forestry notices closing the trail ahead. Fortunately dire warnings of harvesting operations came to naught and we were able to lunch on a handy pile of logs. There followed a further short passage on forestry tracks to Scotch Knowe and the Three Counties meeting point – a fairly undistinguished place where Northumbria, Cumbria and Scotland meet.


Soon crossing back into Scotland a pleasant path followed the north bank of the border-defining Kershope Burn for several miles until a right turn lead to the Border Stane. A final couple of meandering miles completed the circuit which we estimated to have been some 22 miles and seven and a half hours of diverting walking in this little known and remote area.