At the end of the Pennine Way

Published 7 October 2012

Grinning like loons outside the Border Hotel

The other day I was pondering “endings”. What is at the end? What does it look like? And whilst I was thinking about it, I thought of the ends of some of the walks I’ve done.

I always take a photograph when I finish a trail. It’s compulsory. And I thought I’d go through them. And where to start? Ah, well it has to be the Pennine Way.

The Pennine Way’s end point at Kirk Yetholm is interesting because of the way the landscape seems to change. For nearly 300 miles the walker follows a series of hills – those of the Pennines and the Cheviots.

Then, as you enter Scotland that mighty string of hills just seem to end. You descend down to a village and everywhere in front of you seems rather flat instead.

It’s like nature is saying “that’s it, you’re done.”

The end of the Pennine Way is just outside the Border Hotel. There’s no monument or anything; just a sign and a waymark pointing south.

It’s funny really that there isn’t more of a celebration made at the end of the Pennine Way. It is, after all, the granddaddy of UK long distance routes. The one that set it all off in the first place.

The Border Hotel, it must be said, rises to the occasion. Quite literally. In celebration it put a sign up on the first floor of its building. A nice piece of advertising I guess. And a reminder that the walker is due a pint too.

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