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Quest for Tolstoy's Merlin

In late September of 2015, I was priveleged enough to join Jan Hogarth's Quest and Retreats group to accompany author and historian Count Nikolai Tolstoy and his wife up to Hart Fell. Nikolai was the author who made the original connection between the Lailoken Merlin stories and the hill called Hart Fell. He hadn't been up to the hill's spring since the early 80's when he was wiritng his Quest for Merlin book. It was an absolute joy and pleasure to be a part of this group. We hike up to the spa with Mr and Mrs Tolstoy and then spent several hours and the village hall and a local pub deep in conversation about all things Merlin. Here are a few photos from out day out.

Count Nikolai Tolstoy at Hart Fell Spring

The trek to Hart Fell (photo by Siân Yeshe Blackburn)

Ct. Tolstoy in "Merlin's Cave"

The Quest and Retreats group (photo by Siân Yeshe Blackburn)

Tolstoy and I discussing ancient things (photo by Siân Yeshe Blackburn)

The Walking Group (photo by Siân Yeshe Blackburn)

Entrance to the spring

View from Hart Fell

Tolstoy and I in the spring

Forest at the bottom of Hart Fell, to get an idea of what kind of wood Lailoken might have lived in

Nikolai and Jan Hogarth talking about Merlin on Hart Fell (photo by Siân Yeshe Blackburn)

Jan's water quest from Hart Fell makes the paper with my picture

A final relaxed conversation in the pub of the Moffat Hotel

Jan and I wrote an article about the hike with Tolstoy for the paper with my pic

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