Thursday, 29 December 2016

Kilmarnock 28 December

Alan, Allan, Davie Mc, Dougie, Gus, Ian, Jimmy, Johnny, Kenny T, Paul, Robert… and Peter

The last Wednesday of the year saw us assemble at Robert’s for coffee and Christmas cake before partaking of our exercise. Many thanks to Robert and Kate for their hospitality! Too soon it was time to go, so we gathered ourselves together and headed up through Kay Park and on towards Dean Park on what was turning out to be a very pleasant morning. Our next stop was at Davie C’s house to visit the wee man. Good to see that he was in good spirits and was awaiting word for his new plaster which would hopefully make him a bit more mobile. We’ll see you again soon Davie. A Guid New Year to Janette and you!
We had a schedule to keep and so we were off again heading up through Dean Park, noting all the tree-felling that had taken place, and emerging at Assloss Road at the top end. Turning right off this road we took the underpass at the A77 and followed the Craufurdland Water until the footbridge at the ford. Crossing over, we followed Wardlaw Road before turning right and heading back towards Grassyards Road and Robert’s house. All in all, we had walked for the best part of two hours and had got the legs moving again.
Next stop was Wetherspoon’s for our proposed ‘planning meeting’. No sooner had we arrived than Peter joined us for the apres walk.  A nice lunch and a couple of beers later we had succeeded in planning what we would do next week! Still, it was a start, and a very convivial way to end the year.
A Happy and Healthy New Year to all our readers!

Answers to the quiz

1 At Loch Doon dam on the Ness Glen walk.

2 Walking down to Morton Castle on the Durisdeer to Morton Castle walk. The castle can just be made out on the exteme right of the picture.

3 The Deil's Back Door south of Muirkirk. An easy walk!

4 This is the one that I thought would stump you all. It is a walk we did from Pinwherry down the Stinchar Valley to Balantrae. Only been done once so far.

5 An auld favourite - The Greenock Cut

6 Over the hill on the Wanlockhead to Sanquhar walk.

7 Naw it's no' Whitelees, it's Windy Standard.

8 Getting our baerings at the start of the Ayrshire Coastal Path in Glen App.

9 A favourite picnic spot on the Gogo Glen walk abaove Largs.

10 Rothesay on one of the Bute walks to Kilchattan Bay.

11 A break on the walk from Lochranza to Sannox via Laggan Cottage.

12 The start of the Smugglers' Trail at Dundonald Caslte. The castle can be seen behind the trees.

13 Another in the Ness Glen. This is the wee footbridge at the bottom of the gorge when it was new.

14 Starting to climb Black Craig in Glen Afton on a March morning.

15 Arthur's Seat, Edinburgh

How well did you do?

0 - Numpty
1-5 You really need to get out more.
6-10 Apprentice Ooter
11 -14 Experienced Ooter.
15 Aye, you bribed the cameraman, didn't you!

Wednesday, 28 December 2016

Arrangements for Wed 4th January

Meet 10.00. a.m. in the car park on the left as you approach Dalmellington ( the old entrance to the open cast mine works) The walk will be along the hillside and down to the steam railway yard at Dunaskin before returning to the car park.
Wild weather forecast alternative meet at the Annbank bowling club for a walk along the river. 10.00.a.m.

Friday, 23 December 2016

Arrangements for Wed 28th Dec.

Meet Kay Park at 10.00a.m. for coffee. Depart around 10.30.a.m. to walk to Davy's for a wee visit of the invalid. Depart around 11.30.a.m to walk through the Dean Park ( be aware that some paths might be closed due to the felling of trees) ,exit the park onto Assloss road and follow this to the ford. Cross and continue to Grassyards road and back to Kay Park. ( 1hour 15min approx for this section )Use our house to change if necessary before continuing to Wetherspoons for lunch.

Wednesday, 21 December 2016

pictures from the Ashoka and the Oran Mor

The Panto: Alan S, Alan W, Allan, Dougie, Ian, Johnny, Kenny T, Malcolm, Rex, Robert
The Canal Walk: Davie Mc, Gus, Jimmy, Paul, Peter
The Curry: All above plus Jim
Apologies due to incapacitation: Davie C, Kenny R

Friday, 16 December 2016

Christmas quiz or 'All Our Yesterdays'

A slightly different type of quiz this year. Simply look at the pictures and identify the walk: They are all from this decade though not in chronological order.  No prizes will be awarded as this is just for fun. Some are easy, some not and one I think will be impossible but hae a go onyway. Discussion will be allowed, indeed positively encouraged, and bribery of the cameraman is also acceptable.
Even if you have joined us recently, Dougie, you will be able to identify some of the walks.
Have fun.
1. An easy one to start you off.

2. Quite recently.

3. Nae mare clues.












Answers will be posted after New Year.

Thursday, 15 December 2016

Ayr and Pool Competition 14 December

Alan, Allan, Davie Mc, Dougie, Jimmy, Johnny, Malcolm, Paul, Rex, Robert

The walk
There was rain in the air as we left Rex’s for the Burns Centre to partake of coffee and scones. Before we got too comfortable the order was given to leave and so we set off along the old railway line, crossing the Doon and heading out to Dunure Road. By the time we got there it was really wet but, undaunted, we crossed the road and headed up the track to Greenan Farm Cottages and turned right towards Greenan Road. This was not a day for a detour down to the beach at Greenan Castle or for sightseeing, not that there was much to see in the December gloom.
Crossing over the river again at the Millennium Bridge we made our way up to Park’s Honda Garage, crossed the main road and walked up Greenfield Avenue. Not for long though, as a detour was made into Belleisle Park for a visit to the refurbished conservatory. After blethering to the folks on duty, it was back to Greenfield Avenue and up to Burns Cottage at which point we crossed over and were back at Rex’s, well drookit, at ten to one.

The pool
As usual, the pool competition was most entertaining. Robert was true to type and went out early having inadvertently sank the black. The lawman, new to the competition, showed signs of a misspent youth before also going out in a similar manner, and Malcolm demonstrated how to play ‘sink the white’. Eventually Johnny and Davie reached the final with Davie going from the sublime to the ridiculous and back again, often within the same shot. Indeed, one of his shots in his semi was probably the shot of the day. However, despite having the opportunity to win the final on a couple of occasions, he blew it and Johnny held his nerve to win the competition. Well done!
Many thanks again to Rex for his hospitality and organising the pies, to those who brought the drinks and nibbles, and to Dougie’s wife for helping him make the mince pies!
(Despite reservations about whether we could manage it, the three dozen pies were all eaten. They were cooked to perfection, although Johnny reckoned the second batch was a few degrees too warm. It didn’t stop him eating them though!)

It was a pity that the previous winner, Davie C, couldn’t make the event this year due to his injury. We wish Davie all the best for a speedy recovery after surgery and hope to see him soon. Your presents, presence, Davie, is missed! Robert has agreed to collect your fiver each week and we remind you that, if you are not back soon, you will have to undergo the initiation ceremony again!

Wednesday, 14 December 2016

Arrangements for 21 December

Panto, Walk, Curry, Whatever!
Meet at the café at the Glasgow Royal Concert Hall at 10a.m. Those going to the panto will not wait long before taking the subway to Byres Road, aiming to be at Oran Mor for 10.45.
Those walking will decide on the day which option to take.
We will meet up at the Ashoka in Ashton Lane for lunch at 2p.m., before, no doubt, heading back to Kilmarnock to finish off the afternoon/evening in Wetherspoon's.

Thursday, 8 December 2016

Portencross 7 December

Allan, Davie Mc, Dougie, Gus, Ian, Jim, Jimmy, Johnny, Kenny R, Kenny T, Malcolm, Paul, Rex, Robert

The prospect of high winds meant that we would do the Portencross circuit today rather than travel to Cumbrae, and so we assembled at the car park next to the castle on a very dreich December morning. Clockwise was to be the direction and we sped off towards the power station and beyond before turning up to the bridle path. A convenient small, sheltered clearing in the trees was chosen for coffee before the loop was completed in two and a half hours. (Fuller descriptions of the route are available on previous posts.) For most, lunch was taken at the picnic benches to the accompaniment of the crashing waves. The wimps, or the wise, sat in their car.
Because of cutbacks the auld folk's treat is no longer held indoors
We thought that Wetherspoon’s in Irvine might be too busy at this unearthly early hour, especially being so close to Christmas, so we set off up the road to the Village Inn at Fairlie. The entrance to the car park was blocked so we drove round the front to discover it was shut ‘until further notice’. Kenny T’s search of the internet suggested that the Kings Arms in West Kilbride might be an option, and a good one it proved to be. Yet again there were only a couple of regulars inside, making us question its long-term viability. However, the barmaid was more than pleasant and even refused money for the coffees. She was able to tell us that she used to work in the Village Inn and, as far as she knew, it was now shut for good, as trade had been poor. A victim of the new Wetherspoon’s in Largs?
We had a very sociable hour at the Kings and certainly will return the next time we are in that neck of the woods.

Wednesday, 7 December 2016

Arrangements for Wed 14 th Dec.

Meet at Rex Porter's house at 10.00.a.m. Rex will lead us on a 2-3 hour walk around Ayr. This will be followed by a pool competition and something to eat and drink.

Monday, 5 December 2016

Ballageich Hill 30 November

Allan, Davie C, Dougie, Gus, Ian, Jim, Jimmy, Johnny, Kenny T, Malcolm, Paul, Robert & Davie Mc

As we drove into Eaglesham on a cold November morning your scribe could not help but wondering why we were parking at the bottom of the hill that is Polnoon Street rather than the top. “To add a wee bit to the walk”, was the reason offered.
Suitably clad with gloves, hats, et alia, we set off back up to the top of the hill, passing through the parkland rather than following the pavement, and then made our way back up the Eaglesham Moor road until we reached the steep path which took us to the top of Ballageich Hill.
Coffee was called for, and whilst we sat and looked out towards Glasgow, Jimmy produced his binoculars to identify the distant landmarks. The day was getting duller and there was a slight suggestion of moisture in the air so we didn’t delay and set off over the hill before descending by a rather steep slope to Brennan Loch. Thankfully, all made it down in one piece and we took the path between this loch and Lochcraig Reservoir to South Moorhouse farm.
On the previous occasion this walk was done, we turned right here and took the track back towards Eaglesham, but this time we decided to continue down Muirshield Road and on to Langlee Road. (By the way, we hope that the two guys digging the hole for the telegraph pole have made it by this time!) Langlee Road takes you to Eastwood Golf Club but we turned right and went up past North Moorhouse Cottage and into North Moorhouse Farm. Our leaders were following a route on their map and we saw a sign for the footpath on the side of one of the farm buildings, but we took advantage, or so we thought, of local knowledge when we spotted the farmer who was only to keen to talk to us. He advised those at the front which way to go and so we thanked him and moved on. However, after a couple of minutes, there seemed to be something lost in the translation as we debated exactly which direction to take. Kenny went one way but was quickly recalled by the others who made their way up to a field gate and into a field bounded by barbed wire. Carefully climbing this wire at the far side of the field, it was then a matter of ‘where are we and why are we here?’  In truth, once we had our bearings and headed off in approximately the right direction, it wasn’t too long before we spotted a track which took us up to where Kirkton Moor Road and Bonnyton Moor Road met. We took shelter at the side of the road, out of the breeze and the smir, and partook of lunch.
The last leg was down the road past Bonnyton Golf Club towards the new estate at Polnoon. As we walked down Polnoon Road your scribe asked again, “Why didn’t we park at the top of the hill?”
The walk had taken four hours and, for some, it felt like it. Those who had donned gaiters had felt the benefit when negotiating the boggy sections but, all in all, it had been a good step out, and the weather had not been an issue.
FRT was taken at the Kings in Fenwick where Derval Davie joined us after having been at the doctor’s with a …… sair fit.
Kenny’s path was probably the right one.