Tuesday, 21 February 2012

Cairn Table - 15 February

A somewhat reduced-in-number seven Ooters (Ronnie, Rex, Ian, Paul, Robert, Johnnie and Malcolm) gathered in the parking area at Glenbuck Loch on a cool, breezy but dry morning. There we pondered the logistics of ferrying all Ooters to Kames whilst having transport remaining at the Loch for the return ... and all to be done with three cars. It was decided it couldn't be done without a driver doing an extra journey unless there was some sitting upon knees (some were more in favour of this than others, but they were in a minority).

Transportation complete, and undeterred by the absence of the two Ooters with local knowledge, we prepared for the walk at Kames whilst having a chat with a fellow walker about to set off on a 15 mile hike. He regaled us with tales of his previous solo wilderness walks and succeeded in making us all feel a little wimpish.

The ascent of Cairn Table called for the usual view stops. Despite Cairn Table being shrouded in mist as we drove to Glenbuck - the only hilltop in the clouds (does that sound familiar?) - it had cleared nicely for our ascent. We could see Ailsa Craig to the west whilst in the distance, eastwards, we could see hills which might have been the Pentlands ... or they might not have been. Jimmy wasn't there to tell us.

On the way up to the summit the top of a walking stick, made of deer antler, was spotted on the path. A few weeks ago Davie M had lost such an item in snow on Cairn Table and we reckoned it was one and the same. Having kicked it aside ...

...no we didn't. It was retained and will no doubt be blu-tacked to someone's forehead when next we meet up, just to see how long it takes Davie to notice.

A strongish north easterly was blowing at the top so we took shelter in the lee of the impressive summit cairn for coffee.

Despite the recent rains and memories of boggy descents, the way down was relatively dry. We picked up a quadbike track which made for decent underfoot conditions and were quickly down the hill and onto the vehicle track. Here, whilst examining a pile of wooden stakes, Ronnie announced that he no longer had his stick with him. Ronnie, Paul, Rex and Ian had lingered for so long at the stakes that the others were out of sight, but knowing the caring nature of Ooters they reckoned those ahead would soon be aware that their number had been reduced from 7 to 3 and would return to find out what had befallen their comrades.

The four stragglers retraced their footsteps in search of the stick. Ronnie thought he might have left it at what Rex described as the "fence without wires" - "posts" to the rest of us, but it was nowhere to be seen. Ronnie decided he would continue retracing his footsteps and would go back to the summit of Cairn Table and then on back to the starting point at Kames. The three bade Ronnie farewell and set off in search of the rest of the group.

The three in front had indeed noticed that some of the party were missing and so made the decision to .... stop to eat lunch. Mobile phone communication, which had been non-existent, was eventually restored and the two groups were finally in contact again. Of course, the leading group had finished their lunch by the time the starving stragglers arrived and were keen to continue their way, so we did, although a little further on we did all stop for a second lunch break.

Contact was made with Ronnie. He had found no trace of his stick on top of Cairn Table and was on his way back to Kames. However, it's and ill wind which blows nobody any good, and Ronnie was instructed to drive to Glenbuck to meet us at the end of the walk - logistical problem solved!

We enjoyed more fine views of sunlit hills, including Tinto, as we made our way down to Parish Holm farm and the A70. The verges of the track from the main road to the farm were resplendent in snowdrops. And then it was across the road and around the loch to our parking place ... and we only had to wait 5 minutes before Ronnie turned up!

Refreshments were taken at the Coach House in Muirkirk, where we received the usual warm welcome from our young hostess.

A good day's walk in pleasant conditions. Ronnie might disagree.

Wednesday, 8 February 2012

Durisdeer Walk Wed 8th Feb

Sloe Gin Night

The Sloe Gin evening has been moved to Feb 22nd. Meet at Ronnie's around 7.30.p.m. Arrangements are as follows :-choose your curry on Wed 15th, consume on the 22nd around 7.30-8.00 p.m. Sloe gin tasting around 8.30.p.m. Followed by the usual banter and nonsense.

Wednesday, 1 February 2012

New Lanark Walk 1st Feb 2012

Dates for your Diary

15th Feb. Sloe gin competition and curry night. Meet at Ronnie Thompson's house around 7.30p.m.
2nd March Sportman's Dinner. Irvine Sports Club. Contact Johnny.
7th March Rupee Room to celebrate Alan's 65th birthday.
17th March Ronnie's 65th birthday bash. Details to be arranged.
30th March Bowling club Quiz Night.
The Oran Mor visit as yet to be finalised- watch this space.