Laura and I had driven up to Lincolnshire the previous evening, so that the four of us could make an early start for Newcastle. The car was garaged at the Hilton for the week, and we took the train to Carlisle, and then a taxi on to Port Carlisle.
As a warm-up for the main event, we walked from our B&B out to the start of the Hadrian's Wall Path at the King's Arms in Bowness-on-Solway. As we entered the pub, we were greeted by the local welcoming committee, who seemed to have been taking tips from the panel on the X-Factor. All good fun! We then met some of the unfortunate souls (or should that be soles?) that had just completed the march from east to west. The full realisation of what we were letting ourselves in for was beginning to dawn...
So, fortified by local ale, we took our first steps along the path – the 1 mile stretch via 'The Banks' back to Port Carlisle and our first night's accommodation at Hesket House. The B&B was great; the evening meal at the Hope and Anchor ... less so.