Bob’s Walk for Maggie’s Fife is underway - Bob Grant’s most ambitious fundraiser yet. Fife Free Press editor Allan Crow is taking part, tweeting as he walks at @fifefreepressed and blogging every night.
You can donate online: BobsWalk2015
Another day of walking blessed with good weather, great company and filled with moments which make every step and blister worthwhile.
Our route took us from Buckhaven to Leven, along the beach - a glorious long stretch on the sand -up to Lower Largo then Shell Bay, Earlsferry and Elie.
Not quite sure how my pedometer logged 20.8 miles - the equivalent of a return journey to Leven - even allowing for the detour we took, but it felt like a long way. The official guesstimates varied from 13-15 miles. My weary legs clung to the notion they’d done 20 miles for the first time in ever!
Regardless of the mileage, it was another great day of walking and one which marked the start of the second half of the trek to Dundee. The Kelpies were replaced with Methil’s giant turbine - the windmill that rarely moves - and we got to see some the Kingdom’s most enthralling coastline.
We were joined from Buckhaven to Lower Largo by Provost Jim Leishman, who completed his own coastal path walk just last week for the Mary Leishman Foundation.
We took the opportunity to visit the CLEAR environmental project which has transformed a apiece of ground in the town. It’s a brilliant community project - one we need to support and replicate across our towns - and it was a pleasure to meet the people at the heart of it.
From there we headed down past Levenmouth swimming Pool and on to the Prom.
The journey flew past, and we pretty much had the beach to ourselves all the way to Lower Largo where we were ahead of schedule which meant just enough time for a half pint in the Railway Tavern - a pint of Edenmill’s St Andrews Blonde beer, courtesy of the Provost! It went down a treat.
Lunch was just round the corner -a wonderful barbecue courtesy of Maggie’s board member Mairead Stewart. Sausage rolls, broon sauce, strawberries and champagne, and a wee stubby bottle of beer. Oh, and sunshine.
The rain forecast came and went even before we’d finished putting out waterproofs on, and the weather continued to be kind to us as we headed off up the coast. We opted for a route through West Muircambus which took us right round to Elie Caravan Park via an earth track so dry the dust swirled and kicked up with every footstep.
Thankfully the blustery wind was behind us at all times - walking into it would have been no fun at all - but it did leave us all feeling slightly weather beaten as we had a brief strop outside one of the roadside sheds.
With the waterproofs back in the rucksack, we headed back to the path to take in arguably one of its most scenic parts - the route along to Elie, high above the Chain Pier.
For the first time on the walk we saw waves breaking on the rocks - up until now the Forth has been incredible calm and still.
The narrow, well trodden path winds right to the edge of the coastline, up mishaped, eroding stones which act as steps, and down the most challenging of slopes.
There’s nothing but a large - and potentially painful - drop to your right, and thick undergrowth to your left, so it took time for Bob to pick every single pot carefully and lead us down to grounds level at the golf course.
The path parallel to the beach was heavily overgrown making it awkward to tackle so we opted to walk along the side of the course; the soft rough was rather blissful under heavy feet!
Our journey ended in Elie with a drink at Braid’s Bar where one more of those wonderful moments occurred.
Our t-shirts sparked a conversation and that, in turn, led to a quite wonderful donation from the bar to Bob’s Walk ... and the promise they’ll do a couple of miles with us tomorrow.
A lovely way to end a day in great company ...
>> Bob’s Walk is sponsored by event partners Mackays Marmalade, route partner FMC Technologies, plus ACA Sports, Shadow Blinds and Dundee & Fife Chiropractic Clinics.
>> Huge thanks to O’Connell’s, Kirkcaldy, and Morrisons’ Invertiel store for their generous donations.
>> Thank you to Baird’s Bar, Elie, for their very kind donation. Please visit their Facebook page and ‘like’ it - and if you are in town, pop in!
>> You can donate online: BobsWalk2015