Wednesday, 21 March 2018

The Canonbie Walk Yet Again

We had planned a walk along the River Annan but Tom had to put signs up for the Langholm Rotary Club Canonbie Umbrella Walk on Saturday so he insisted we helped him with this. Once again it caused many arguments but Tom managed to get his own way almost all of the time. I hope Langholm Rotary Club appreciate how much work he has done in preparing this walk. 
John and myself at the Meeting of the Waters after having cursed Tom for the last 2 miles but its just water of a Duck's back and it certainly makes for an interesting walk.
The final set of way markers where to be honest none were needed as there is no other way to go but then as usual Tom wins the argument. 
A fallen tree across the path so I will send this to the Access Officer at D & G Council to see if it can be removed fairly soon.  
Another land slip at the Dead Nook Pool 
As always at Canonbie we time our walk to finish in time for the Community Cafe opening and enjoy Tea, Scone, and Cake for a very reasonable price. 

Wednesday, 14 March 2018

Martin's Birthday Walk on the Cross Border Drove Road

We all met up in Peebles for Martin's Birthday Walk which took us up Hamilton Hill and then onto the Cross Border Drove road. Unfortunately John had to call off at the last minute as he had to take his daughter for a hospital appointment.
Elizabeth and Tom crossing the Tweed. We must get Tom a new hat as this one is about 20 years past its sell by date.
Neidpath Castle which looks like it is now closed to the public 
Martin and Tom having yet another discussion about the route we should be going. I should add that Martin is nearly always right and Tom is very often wrong.
Martin leads the way through one of the many snowdrifts 
Elizabeth tackling the snowdrift with ease
After a steady climb we reach the plateau of Hamilton Hill
Despite all the snow of the last 10 days it was amazing how dry the hill was. It looks as if all the snow blew off the hill into the sheltered dykes and the Cross Border Drove Road which was full of snow 
We are now on The Cross Border Drove Road and in deep snow 
Heading through the woods before we reach the top of Hamilton Hill 
Sandria and Elizabeth can talk and walk with great ease
The toughest part of the Cross Border Drove Road 
Elizabeth celebrates getting out of the snowdrifts. We were soon back in Peebles and enjoying a lovely meal in Osso's Restaurant.

Wednesday, 7 March 2018

Checking out the Canonbie Umbrella Walk route

Its almost time for the Langholm and Canonbie Umbrella Walks so Tom decided we should check out the Canonbie route as he is once again in charge of it. We were joined by David and Bowman and Ruger for the first time since New Year's Day as of course David has been in Barbados for almost 2 months. The dogs are great company with Bowman taking the lead and never straying from the route while young Ruger covers twice the ground and is constantly disappearing, but never for long. 
The dogs go for a swim in the Liddel
Tom and Bowman check out the seat placed there in memory of Alastair Davies and recently moved to a safer spot due to flood damage to the ground nearby.  
Canonbie Kirk with the last remnants of last weeks snow still in the field.
Another paddle for the dogs this time in the Esk
H & H King should get their people to learn to spell. Well spotted David. We finished our walk with a nice lunch in the Whiteshiels Cafe.

Saturday, 3 March 2018

Feed the Birds on Foot

Since the snow arrived on Tuesday night we were concerned that nobody had been to the Bird  Hide to feed the birds so Bob and Nancy and I set out to walk the 6 mile round trip to top up the feeders. 
There were some huge Snow Drifts to negotiate but no problem to Nancy
We made it to the feeders and gave them some much needed seed and peanuts and headed back via the road. It is only suitable for 4 wheel drive vehicles as this slush is now solid ice.
A very picturesque scene at Border Esk

Wednesday, 28 February 2018

The Beast From the East and its Not Tom

This storm has been forecast for over a week and my goodness the forecasters were right. We were on the fringe of the storm yesterday and managed to get away with just a few centimetres but today is different and it snowed most of the morning and is now followed by regular fierce showers with a wind chill factor that makes it feel like Siberia. We postponed our walk until 2.00pm and I was delighted that I could make it as I had planned to be involved in Langholm Initiative interviews for a Wild Eskdale Project Manager but wide cancelled these at 7.00am before the 2 candidates attempted to travel. 
Tom and Peter on the Duchess Bridge in a snowstorm 
Round by the Pheasant pens

The bottom 2 photographs were taken with my I Phone and to be honest they are better than the ones with my small Sony camera as the I Phone seems to make better use of the light available, although the light was probably slightly better when I took these ones. 

Wednesday, 21 February 2018

From Claygate to Langholm via Howgillcleuch

We had a later start today but the weather was perfect for our 8 mile walk from Claygate back to Langholm via Howgillcleuch. This used to be a very popular walk at The Walking Festival but it was 2 miles longer then and started in Canonbie.This photo was taken at Orchard Farm and you can just see Langholm Monument above Tom's shoulder
This is one of the fields before Howgillcleuch where they appear to be cutting the rushes. It certainly gives it an interesting affect
White hill and the Monument in the distance 
This is the cottage at Howgillcleuch which has been empty for many years but we spoke to a family who are in the process of doing it up and they plan to move in this year. It is one of the remotest cottages in the area but a beautiful place to live if you like isolation.
From the cottage we move down into the Tarras valley where Tom decided we should stop for a refreshment.
We soon had a stream to cross and this always causes problems for old men but because we are now classed as Middle Aged until we reach 79 then it presented no problems to us. 
In the Tarras valley we come to this bridge which bans Bungee jumpers which was a big disappointment to us Middle Aged men.
Will it hold them both 
Near Cronksbank bridge there is this area of long grasses of the type used in thatching and also a wonderful place for wild life. The Tarras valley and the Langholm Moor is probably the best place in mainland Britain to watch Hen Harriers and right on cue a Female Hen Harrier flew past us as we neared the edge of Langholm Moor. We finished our walk at Whitshiels Cafe and arrived just 15 minutes before closing time but the soon had us looked after with a lovely meal and we were back out in 30 minutes. Great service and with a smile as well.

Thursday, 15 February 2018

Bentpath to Potholm in a Blizzard

We always walk from Bentpath through Westerhall estate to see the Snowdrops at this time of year but this week it was not just Snowdrops but snowflakes we had to put up with. Because the weather was due to get worse we parked my car at Potholm and took Tom's to the start at Bentpath Hall. It was only just after we started walking that the snow started and got gradually worse during the 2 hours of our walk. This is the entrance to Westerhall estate. 
The Snowdrops we had come to see so we will have to come back in better weather to get a better photograph 
On the Sorbie road when the blizzard was at its worst 
View from the car on the road to Bentpath. We ended our walk with a pancake lunch at The Buccleuch Centre.

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