Friday, 29 April 2011

Street Party. Glasgow style (1918)

A wee antidote to you know what. Get that cloying sickly taste out of the thrapple.

Monday, 25 April 2011

Spring. Boing !

Has anyone else noticed that Mother Nature (as we anthropomorphogists affectionately refer to her) has made something of a horlicks of the seasons this year ?

My case, in essence, is that everything is either currently in flower or has just finished flowering.

The significance, of course, of this floricultural front-loading is that there will be nothing left for June/July etc.

It's going to be a pretty bland, green summer and autumn.

And another thing while I'm here.
I've been studying all the literature on this AV thing, I'm agin it.
Therefore, I will be voting YES, with NO as my second preference to ensure the damn thing gets thrown out.
(this is how it works, isn't it ?)

Wednesday, 20 April 2011

Matters arising.

As a result of the camera malfunction, my previous post (Dundreich. Remember ?) may have seemed rather brusque, and I would like to update the readership and add some detail. I may also include a directors cut, a couple of remixes and a bonus track.

Firstly the camera. I have rewired the PCB and reconfigured the software and it now appears to be working. Oh, and I recharged the battery.You didn't miss a lot - there were some pics of interesting stuff in my usual anti-photography style, but views were restricted by the weather. Which is a pity, because Jeffries Corse is right on the north scarp of the Moorfoots, with views over Midlothian, Edinburgh and Fife on a good day.

Then there was the hen harriers. A pair apparently "getting to know each other". I was a wee bit surprised at recent talk of potential extinction. They're not common , but have never been rare in the Southern Uplands and there is a layby just up the road from Eddleston where I often used to stop for lunch and watch one hunting - at low level like this probably for meadow pipits rather than grouse. I don't know to what degree they are persecuted by keepers, but it certainly doesn't require a gun or carbofuran to restrict their numbers - just a "careless" boot !

And then there was the barbed wire. Back when I occasionally did a bit of fencing, if barb was required it went in as the second-top strand. Now it seems to fashionable to have as the top strand.
I blame Alec Salmond. Fat, jambo fud !

And finally, I discovered later that I had come within inches of two top-style bloggers on the bus home. However, they were apparently too busy discussing Mike Knipe's arse to notice the distinguished looking elderly gentleman with sheep shit on his shoes who boarded their bus at Eddleston. So it goes.

Monday, 18 April 2011

Dundreich and Jeffries Corse

Purely as a matter of record, I climbed Dundreich and JC ( Two Donald Tops) from Eddleston today. For some reason the camera does not seem to have saved any pictures after the first four. I'm quite angry about that. As soon as I have finished here, I will be out to the garage with a mashie hammer and brick bolster in an attempt to fix it .

The day started well as the bus hurried me to Edinburgh under a promising mackerel sky. As I crossed The Bridges in the 62 bound for the Borders I got a viiew of sunshine down in East Lothian, and imagined Mick and Gayle making good progress in past Aberlady and Longniddry.
I got off the bus in Eddleston and got lost. I'm fine on the hill, honest, but these streets and caravan parks seem to throw me. Early doors, I was confronted by the first barbed wire fence of the day - fortunately it was pig netting under the barb, making climbing easier.
The weather was, typically, fine early on, hazy and cloudy round the tops, with the sun coming out on the way down. It looked a bit cloudy to the  south, where Knipe's Nomads should have been strolling down Glen Sax ( or similar ).
Ascent was straightforward (he said smugly). Anyone noticed that the small steps are gradually getting bigger ? There's bound to be a big setback soon !
Dundreich summit - trig pillar and a wee cairn with an unusual rugby ball type stone on top. We are in the Borders, after all
I had climbed these hills with the laddie, but from Gladhouse, and can't say in all honesty that I really remember much from then.
Return by the same route but refined to minimise fence crossing. Back up to Edinburgh on the 15.14 62, leaving an hours wait at Edinburgh bus station for the Stirling bus. And just around the corner from the Cafe Royal. I nearly convinced myself to pop round for an orange juice, but there was the off chance I might meet someone. It's no easy when you're wee !

The Black Barony across the valley. Yes,yes, I know. But we live in politically correct times

The main Pentland ridge. Very tempting, Flotterston to West Kip used to be a Sunday fave.

Typical Southern Uplands

Portmore Loch.

And it would appear that the embed function has disappeared from Youtube

edit. found it - you have to click share now.

Wednesday, 13 April 2011

Fancy a night out in Stirling ?

from the BBC Scotland website

"The court heard Turner and Aimer approached Mr Lasota in Stirling city centre at about 0130 GMT.
Prosecuting, Brent Bissett told the court: "The complainer was with his friend, who had with him his pet ferret.
"They met the two co-accused in the street, and there was a conversation about the ferret."
He said Aimer and Turner then got into a disagreement with Mr Lasota about the animal, which led to the assault.
Mr Lasota's friend called the police, and Aimer and Turner were arrested.
Harry Coughlin, defending Aimer, and Alistair Ross, representing Turner, both said the assault had occurred because of the disagreement about the ferret.
Sheriff William Gilchrist fined Aimer £190 and Turner £225."

Monday, 11 April 2011

Now, where did I put that pencil ?

The preparations had been made. All contingencies had been allowed for. Nothing could go wrong.

As I strolled up to the University, it seemed as if it was going to be the type of day for which the phrase "Joys of Spring" had been coined. Geese and swans honked overhead and a host of smaller, yappy type, birds were getting their two cents in as well.It was warm, but with the kind of early morning haze which often burns off as the day progresses.
Attentive followers of the blog (are there any other kind ?) will recall that previous attempts on the "Big One" had been made from the East. These , however, had been merely cunning feints and, as a student of Sun TzuI had always planned that the final assault would come from the West.
So Silver Glen it was, once more.

The elevenses boulder. I checked carefully for cups and rings, but all I could see was some wine stains and a few traces of bear poo.

These haul roads are only marginally beneficial to walkers, but seem to be extremely popular with these good people

Unfortunately, when I reached the gate where the path leads up Ben Ever I had just missed a rickshaw, and rather than wait an hour for the next one I decided to walk up. As I gained height, the wind started to get up, and visibility dropped.

When I was last up Ben Ever in September, there were spectacular views of the Southern Highlands, but on this occasion even the view of Wood Hill was murky.

Onward and upward however, and from the fence which leads up to Ben Cleuch's summit ridge I got my first view of the Burnhouse Hill Environmental Improvement scheme. (Pic is deliberately poor quality to avoid causing apoplexy in sensitive readers)

Not much to see from the indicator.(Experienced mountain photographers will recognise the slight angle to the pic caused by the photographer leaning into the wind.)

The famous shelter cairn at the trig pillar, with recent enhancements.

The Law looking rather menacing in the haze.

Rocky outcrop at the top of Andrew Gannel Hill

Now back to the preparation bit. Those who have read the "Funny old game" post might have been wondering what I was doing at Maddy Moss after trekking up Tilly Glen a few weeks ago. Well, I can now reveal that I was stashing the descent mechanism for this summit push.

You didn't think I was going to walk all the way down now, did you ?

On the way down Upper Mill Street, I passed a building called The Woolpack which had a sign outside proclaiming it to be Camera Approved. An ideal opportunity, I thought as I pushed open the door, to brush up on my photographic skills (OK, OK, I know). Imagine my dismay when I gazed into the dimly lit room to hear the rattle of dominoes from the corner ; the sounds of men's laughter came from the other corner ; a middle-aged woman bursting out of a tight top caught my eye and smiled.and I was overcome by the disgusting stench of hops. I closed the door quickly. Must have misread the sign.

Now that I am back home and off the oxygen and the drip, I can look forward to the pleasure of ticking my lists..As a recent convert to baggery ( well, yesterday, actually) I'm not sure what it all means but  I seem to have scored 1D, 2DTs, 2GTGs, 1G, 1MA, 1CHH and 1CUU. Good, eh ? I'll have them all finished in no time. Plus of course, I did Ben Ever twice, so I have one to swopsie. 1 Cairnsmore of Carsphairn for 2 Ben Evers and a Bobby Charlton ? Just popping up to the loft now for my Ian Allan books and a ruler and biro (ask your grandad !)

Best Bar Band in The World. And having seen them put Fresno Ca. to the torch in the late eighties, who am I to disagree ?

Sunday, 10 April 2011

Diary Date : 10th April

Typical boring Sunday. Sunny but breezy and hazy. Went for walk in Ochils. Up Silver Glen, climbed Ben Ever, Ben Cleuch and Andrew Gannel Hill. Back down by Tillicoultry Glen. About 8 miles/2600 ft ascent.
Thats it, really.

Dancer !

Saturday, 9 April 2011

Split Trees Mystery !

Everyone enjoy the sunshine yesterday ? Anyone notice the one cloud symbol on the weathermaps ? Over Argyll it was.
Guess where I was yesterday ?
Yup. Argyll.
Roseneath Peninsula to be precise.

It was cold and cloudy. The walk was through a lot of forestry and mainly on hard surfaces. I got lost in a caravan site.
I've had better days.

Any interest was botanical

Kilcreggan Pier

Friday, 1 April 2011

An explanation

Earlier today,I posted a wee April Fool (don't worry, it wasn't very good, you didn't miss much !)

In accordance with tradition, I deleted it at 12 noon. However, I see the link is still showing on blogs which have linked to this one. Sorry for any inconvenience caused.

While I'm here......