Martin in Gatineau Park - 2018

Martin in Gatineau Park - 2018

Monday, 29 November 2010

An Epic Journey - Phase 2

Stuck in a Morrisons car park with only a Test Match for company....

Bored with that, a bit of action with the ice axe and some feverish manoeuvring saw me escape from the clutches of the car park before 7 am (Morrisons didn't open until 8, so I never did discover their coffee shop) to reclaim my position in the car park on the A93 that leads to the closed A9.

Enquiries led me to conclude that there was no sensible alternative to waiting here. If Louise had her way I'd be waiting till spring! I was joined by numerous other vehicles that I recognised from yesterday's first gear adventure between Dundee and Perth.

Apparently traffic had been directed to a 'Rest Centre' (a school) where some 600 people spent the night. The police at the A9 closure point last night didn't tell me that - perhaps it was full, like all the hotels.

I attempted to gain information as to how to escape from Perth by emailing PerthFM. An immediate reply (!) said 'All roads closed. Keep warm'.

By 10am I'd been refreshed by coffee kindly supplied by Tom, whose fiancée Jennifer stayed in their car whilst he fetched provisions from some nearby services. I could have gone with him; nothing moved. Brownies were the currency - Tom refused cash in recognition of all those who had pushed their car along the A90 ice rink yesterday (I may have been one of those people). Tom and Jennifer had managed to find friends in Perth to stay with last night, after establishing that all hotel rooms had been taken by mid afternoon (it seems the roads south had been closed nearly all day).

The blizzard had stopped overnight, to be replaced by cold sunshine this morning.

10.30am: after three and a half hours in the queue (pictured) PerthFM reports 'minor roads blocked by fallen trees, major routes shut - you are going to struggle to get out of Perth today'. That's hopeful then!

[I wrote that at 10.30]

10,31am: Traffic starts to move. The A9 has reopened. It's gentle, single file stuff down to Glasgow, but after that the M74 and M6 are clear, with just a sprinkling of snow in evidence as far as Lancaster and none after that.

So the journey, a bit less epic today, ended in Timperley at around 5pm after over 30 hours in the car.

I think I'll stay at home for a day or two....

I'll write a reprise.

Happy Days!

Sent using BlackBerry® from Orange


The Odyssee said...

Glad you are home safe and sound if not a bit stressed presumably.
What a carry on.

John J said...

Good to hear you've made it back to Timperley!


Paul said...

30 hours? Good grief. You must be very glad to be home!

afootinthehills said...

Glad you're home safe and sound Martin. I'll post a pic of Lendrick Hill for you!!

Phreerunner said...

Thanks for your messages, JJ and Alan.
Paul, another night in the car would have been a bit tedious!
I'm sorry you couldn't pop in for a cuppa, Gibson, and I'm sure Lendrick is a hill worthy of waiting for a future visit...
A shame it took so long to get back, as I hear I missed Stay At Home Hazel's Birthday Party. Belated greetings, Hazel!

Alan Sloman said...

An epic adventure to rival any of those Munro thingies. I felt for you as I sipped another cup of coffee with the fan heater blowing comfort to my knees.

Louise said...

So glad you finally made it home, a bit of an adventure!
I'm never quite sure what some people expect (I've been hearing their complaints on news reports) when they are battling the elements, they seem to think that with 'a bit of effort' the roads would be clear, etc., etc., but noone can beat nature!
Relax a while.

John J said...

The words 'Martin' and 'Relax' don't quite work together!


Dot said...

What an adventure!
Your brother and sister-in-law on hearing of your 30 hour journey felt they had made the right decision. Your brother commented that you are made of sterner stuff than he is.
Glad you are home safely.
Look forward to seeing you soon!

Phreerunner said...

Three days' driving, one day's walk, and a very jolly dinner event.
Was it worth it? Absolutely - very enjoyable actually!!!
Thanks for all your concern, though, it's much appreciated.