TGOC2016 Revisited – Day 13 – The End – Ethie Haven

With only 12km ahead of me on my final day I should have plenty of time to reach Ethie Haven, enjoy the moment, then catch the bus to Montrose, check into my room at the Park Hotel and relax before dinner.  The day did not work out quite as I’d planned.

Walking on minor roads into Inverkeilor I somehow missed a turning so used farm tracks to get back to where I should have been.


p1040708-2This was actually much nicer than walking on the road…. so a good choice  😉 although I did have to cross a vicious nettle patch which stung my legs through my trousers.

There was no need to stop in Inverkeilor; I was nearly at the coast and wanted to keep going.  I crossed under the railway line and headed south along the road.  I kept going south.  Hm?  Surely the road should be going south east?  Oh b*gger it, I’ve missed my turn…again.  I turned round and walked back towards Inverkeilor taking the road to Priestfield.

Nearing Ethie Haven I had a good view of Lunan Bay, the finishing point of my first TGO Challenge in 2006.

p1040715-2There were fingerposts to Ethie Haven via Ethie Mains and via Corbie Knowe.  I plumped for the Ethie Mains route so that I could do a circular walk back via Corbie Knowe.  My plan was to walk along the Lunan Bay beach after I’d finished, and I did not want to have to reverse my steps if I could avoid it.

I knew that Ethie Haven was nestled in the cliff and would not be very easy to find but I was starting to wonder where on Earth it was until, finally, it came into view.

p1040732-2I walked down the pebbly beach to the water’s edge for a paddle then sat on a rock having a think.  I’d done it.  I’d completed my 10th crossing of Scotland.



p1040730-2It was now nearly 1pm and time to head for Montrose.  I would walk along the beach to the Lunan Bay Diner then catch the bus to Montrose.  In a very bracing wind the sea was roaring.


Looking back to Ethie Haven.

I hadn’t really properly researched where the Lunan Bay Diner was and I wasn’t sure if I could walk all the way there along the beach so I diverted onto the road at Red Castle.  This was a mistake as I could have stayed on the beach which would have been much nicer.  I expected that the diner would be full of Challengers but I was the only one, so I ate my dinner and drank my pop on my own.

I’d not bothered to check the bus times in advance as I know that there are loads of buses along the A92.  Unfortunately at that time of day they all go South.  Bus after bus was going to Arbroath but none were due to go North to Montrose until after 5pm.  Oh, b*gger (again).  I weighed up my options; wait for a bus, hitch, call a taxi … or walk.  Lifting my pack back onto my shoulders I set off along the A92.  This was not the highlight of my trip, I can tell you, but I could see Montrose getting nearer and I suppose it’s the purist’s way of completing the Challenge!


Reaching the Park Hotel after 5pm I signed the register and checked into my hotel room.  Good friends and many people I’ve hardly spoken to before congratulated me on my Tenth (…. yes, I think Tenth needs a capital letter in these circumstances.)  I remember my first finish; gritting my teeth in a false smile and saying “Oh, I’ll see…” when people asked if I’d be back to do my second – but now, here I was finishing my Tenth.  I think this TGO Challenge thing has got its hooks into me!

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19 Responses to TGOC2016 Revisited – Day 13 – The End – Ethie Haven

  1. louse4 says:

    Congratulations Judith!
    Yet another well thought out, interesting route (I like to follow the write up on the map ‘as you go’) and a very entertaining write up, lots of giggles and plenty of ideas to nick.
    Brilliant, thank you 😁

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Thanks for that wonderful write up Judith and congratulations on completing your Tenth crossing


  3. alan.sloman says:

    What they both said! (See above)
    Phil, David & I are thinking of Lunan Bay again next year. We finished at the cafe this year so must have only just missed you! (WE were lazy sods and took a cab) We had more or less settled on Red Castle for 2017, but I have to say that Ethie Haven looks a better choice.
    Cheers, Judith – I really enjoyed this write up.


    • Judith says:

      Thanks Alan. Ethie Haven is not the prettiest place I’ve finished (that honour might go to the beach at Black Dog, or to Collieston) but it felt right. It took some finding; it really did feel like a Haven; and it took me full circle back to my first crossing.


  4. treksandtors says:

    One of my favourite reads on the web for the past few weeks, well done, fantastic challenge

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Jeremy Burrows says:

    I think I know that patch of nettles, Judith – it got me, too, on the way to MY tenth finish, in 2015!!

    What a splendid write-up; full of the understated self-deprecating humour which seems to characterize all the great characters of the Challenge … of whom you are, undoubtedly, one!


  6. Brian Gruber says:

    Congratulations on your 10th! Thoroughly enjoyed the read!

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Ian Johnston says:

    Congratulations Judith – and a nice “closing of the circle” to finish your tenth crossing at the same place as the first… now will your eleventh finish at the same spot as your second?! :o)


  8. John J says:

    An excellent crossing Judith – and an equally excellent, informative and entertaining write-up.
    Congratulations and very well done!
    We should go for a walk sometime – loads of catching up to do.


  9. AlanR says:

    Really good and quite an unusual route. Congrats on your 10th crossing Judith and well written account. I enjoyed reading it.


  10. A bit late, but hey… I also enjoyed your write up. I may take a similar route in 2017 if I get in from the back of the standby list.
    Well done again, and as JJ says, we must meet up for a stroll…


  11. Peter Goddard says:

    Sorry Judith you are only a “foot” (leg end) you need another ten to reach real Legend status. Sorry this is a bit late and I am only now catching up with ’16 reports. Seriously; well done on you tenth and a very good read.


  12. Judith says:

    Thanks Peter. I don’t kid myself that I’ll ever reach True Legend status. For a start, I’ve never drunk too much in Braemar or finished in St Cyrus!


  13. John J says:

    Neither drinking too much in Braemar (not guilty) or finishing at St Cyrus (guilty) are compulsory.

    Liked by 1 person

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