Wednesday, 29 November 2017

Marvellous Walk in Moniaive

Todays walk in Moniaive had been planned a few weeks ago but we were only able to go today and without John as he is still in Edinburgh. It was a perfect day for walking but very cold. The instructions we were following advised us to turn right at this cottage which to our surprise was called Langholm. 
The early part of the walk involved crossing the Dalwhat Water and a climb to the top of Bardennoch Hill which is just over 1000ft high.  
The gradual climb to the top of Bardennoch Hill 
A little snow and several wind turbines
Moniaive in the valley
Approaching the summit
The summit but not a place to linger as it was bitterly cold in the biting wind. 
The middle part of the walk took us through this forest on Stenhouse Hill
An excellent forestry road
Heading down to the Hamlet called Tynron
A tree with nothing left on it but berries
This Folly is in an area called Lady's Knowe but I can find nothing about it anywhere
Someone has built a seat beside this lovely tree so I had to give it a try
The final section of our walk was a lonely country road but due to it being in continual shade it was very slippy with lots of patches of black ice
And finally back into Moniaive for a lovely lunch in The GlenWhisk Cafe and Bistro. Very quick service and excellent food we will definitely be back. 

Wednesday, 22 November 2017

Rain, Rain, and even more Rain

This was the forecast for today so our proposed walk was cancelled and instead we lunched at Whitshiels and then headed down to  Gilnockie Tower to view the newly opened Visitor Centre for Clan Armstrong. We ended with Tea and Cake at Canonbie Community Cafe.
This is Johnnie Armstrong's four poster bed
His bedroom had an en-suite toilet.
The river Esk in flood viewed from the 2nd Floor.
The main living room on the first floor

Wednesday, 15 November 2017

A Missed Walk but a Good Day at DGRI

Instead of my usual Wednesday Walk with the lads today we had a 6 month appointment for Gaye at DGRI. It was great news as her blood count is down yet again so its another 6 months before we have to go back again. So proud of the recovery she has made in the last 3 years all thanks to our wonderful NHS and the support of our family. 

The lads were joined by Elizabeth for a walk up the Meikledale valley. They were lucky as it looks to be clear of mist while the journey to Dumfries we made was very misty. 
While Gaye did a bit of shopping to celebrate her good news from the Hospital I walked along the Nith. This is the famous Devorgilla Bridge.  
Many years ago on a canoeing course with The Boy's Brigade I went over this Caul in a canoe. 

Wednesday, 8 November 2017

Another Walk in Silloth and a Disappearing Hotel

This was the Skinburness Hotel when we walked at Silloth on 1st June 2017 and the photo below was it when John and I walked the route today. I don't know what will happen to the site but the hotel was advertised for sale at £250K about 10 years ago so somebody has lost a lot of money.
John was not available in June so we both decided to go there today with both Tom & Peter unavailable.

It was a fairly misty day but very pleasant for walking. 
Silloth main street and one of the few towns left with cobbled streets 
Skinburness Creek at the furthermost point of the walk. We ended our walk at Mrs. Wilsons Cafe on Silloth High Street and  had a fabulous lunch at a reasonable price with excellent service. 

Friday, 3 November 2017

River Esk Walk from Canonbie to Langholm

My favourite walk is along the river Esk from Canonbie to Langholm. I tried about 4 or 5 years ago to get this walk as one of The Langholm Walks network but Buccleuch Estates refused permission. Since then I have taken as many people as possible on this walk as a way of sticking two fingers up to Buccleuch Estates for their lack of support. My latest party of walkers were Kate and Don Lacey who have recently moved to Skippers Cottage to be near their son Daniel who is one of the worlds leading furniture makers. In my opinion this is the nicest walk in the area and should be in our network. I even had the funding to get it all in order as all it needed was signposts and maybe a couple of new stiles but it was not to be. I think I will have another go soon to get it as a way marked walk for the benefit of visitors. It is even more important now as the Gilnockie Tower Visitor Centre is open and attracting visitors. When this opens fully next summer a way marked walk going past it could be a great asset to it.  
This is the entrance to the mill stream at Hollows Mill which now runs an Archimedes Screw to power the mill. The working Mill is another place of interest on this walk.
This is one of the rooms in the newly refurbished Gilnockie Tower. We were kindly shown round by Beverley Hyslop and when it is finished it will be beautiful and a great asset to the area. Go to for more information. 
Beverley with Kath and Don
Gilnockie Tower and the Clan Armstrong Centre 
The river Tarras joins the Esk at Irving House. It looks such an insignificant river here but further up the valley it is one of the loveliest rivers in Scotland with loads of wild life to be seen.
Irving House which has been empty for a good number of years and now has Moles on the front lawn which used to be a Tennis Court many years ago. It would make a lovely high class hotel 
Just below Irving House on the nicest part of the river walk we saw this Salmon. It looks to be diseased and probably wont survive very long. I am not sure if it will have spawned further up river and now be on its way back to the sea.

Thursday, 2 November 2017

The Red Squirrels of Eskrigg

John was delighted that this village was named after him. This weeks Wednesday walk took us to Lockerbie as I had to drop Gaye off at Lockerbie Station for a trip to Glasgow to see The Streamie. She was in this play at Langholm Music & Arts Festival in 1998 and she loved every minute of it during that summer of rehearsals. It was such a success they went to Annan for a performance as well in front of 400 people. We all met up at Lockerbie Station for a 6 mile circular walk that took in Eskrigg Nature Reserve.  
When we arrived at Eskrigg we had hardly time to sit down in  the Hide before the Red Squirrels arrived and in no time at all we were watching 6 of them.
This one had a very black bushy tail 
Just as I started to take photographs my camera battery packed in so these are all from my I Phone which has not got as good a zoom as the camera.  
They moved so fast it was difficult to get a clear photo. 
Great entertainment for 20 minutes and then we moved on. 
The route back to Lockerbie was extremely muddy. We ended our walk with Lunch in the Kings Arms Hotel.

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