Tag Archives: Windfarm

Castle Kennedy to the Middle of Nowhere

Geese, Castle KennedyI have a map of southern Scotland on my office wall that I have annotated with the walks Jazz and I have done. The brown bits and islands have the expected spider’s web but there was a big gap that was teasing me: the last section of the western half of the Southern Upland Way we still had to do.  It’s been blank for a few years as it requires serious planning (i.e. more than our usual “while having breakfast”) and spousal cooperation for drop-off/pick-up duty.  A recent brain-wave gave me the idea of a holiday in the area and bribing the Missus to do this if I did the cycling support team bit while she tried to join up the coffee-pushers on the nearby cycle network.  She fell for it, and so on a lovely early-Autumn morning Jazz and I were dumped at Castle Kennedy to start this last western bit. Continue reading

Largs to Ardrossan

Three Sisters

Three Sisters

I last walked this section of the Ayrshire coast back in 2007, i.e. pre-Jazz and even before the creation of the Ayrshire Coastal Trail, so a usual planning-while-munching-toast process popped this into mind.  I discussed it with Her-Jazzness and she was keen, especially when I told her no hills would be involved in the creation of this blog entry. There was just the small, unexpected scenario of it being a hot day in Scotland… Continue reading

Grey Hill Saves the Day

Jazz at Grey Hill trig point with Ailsa Craig behindThe instruction from Her Imperial Majesty the Missus to clear up a pile of “junk” awaiting integration into my filing system resulted in a leaflet produced by South Ayrshire Council called Girvan Walks seeing the light of day again. The longest route involving a circuit to the clachan of Pinmore caught the eye and with a quick consultation with the canine companion we were set.  I have no idea how long it has been waiting “filing” but let’s just say that a few wind farms have sprouted around Girvan in the meantime.  To cement things the last time I was down here Jazz was literally the twinkle in her father’s eye: time for an update. Continue reading

Gargunnock Hills

Gargunnock Hills

Gargunnock Hills

I’d spotted this ridge when we took a scenic route to Stirling and thought it looked worth a visit.  I keep forgetting that I can reach this part of the country faster than parts of south Ayrshire and so usually discount it: I’ll need to work on that. It is a lovely escarpment that jumps out of the upper Forth valley and apart from a steep first hour we were promised a longish but straightforward day.  Ah, the best-laid plans of man+dog… Continue reading

Glen Artney to Loch Earn

Kev and Jazz at foot of Ben VorlichRegular readers of this nonsense will know that planning is our watchword and so it will come as no surprise when we say that this little jaunt came to life one evening while perusing the OS map and helping along the Chilean wine industry while on holiday on Highland Perthshire.  I’d spotted a walking sign at the end of Glen Artney and by following the paths managed to get a nice linear walk over to Loch Earn.  Despite yesterday’s handbag-strap incident, the Missus was willing to do the car bit, and we were even joined by a friend (who we’ll call “Michael” for convenience): did no-one warn him? Continue reading

Overfingland to Moffat

Looking back at the car and Lowther Hill, 2It’s a May Bank Holiday with decent weather forecast, so obviously we are into “avoid-the-crowds” mode.  And where else but the Southern Upland Way (SUW) almost guarantees you’ll meet no-one the whole day?  So our eyes were drawn to one of the longer stages that we still needed to do in the western half, and with the Missus offering to pick us up at the end, we were set for the section from Overfingland to Moffat. Continue reading

Chapelgill and Cardon Hills

The last time I took a day off the government’s ONS said that the country slipped back into recession, such is my productivity.  However, with a beautiful day forecast and everyone else working (i.e. watching the Olympics on iPlayer) I thought I could escape notice and so we headed for the hills.  The target was a couple of Donalds near Culter Fell with an Iron Age fort thrown in for Jazz.  We’ll just have to wait for the Q3 figures to see how much the economy suffered from our day in the sun. Continue reading

Moorfoots in the Rain

Fisherman on Portmore Loch

I was brought up in the Esk Valley with the Pentland Hills on one side and the Moorfoot Hills on the other.  Probably because they are just round lumps the Moorfoots were somewhere I never walked.  Time to rectify that, and even bag three Donalds into the bargain with a nice circular walk from Portmore Loch.  It all started well, but then the rain set in and gave us a very soggy afternoon. Continue reading

Cauldstane Slap

How cool is that name?  This was a walk back in time: the last time I’d done it was with my Father the day before my Higher Geography exam. That was 33 years ago, and I’m now 6 years older than Bertie-boy was then.  That messed with my head for a bit but on a positive side, I was using the same OS map and was feeling pretty smug that I’d got my £1.40 worth out of the Ordnance Survey.  Luckily the Pentlands haven’t changed that much: a few extra wind farms in the distance being the obvious change. Continue reading