Skylarks in the Ochils

June 10, 2018  •  2 Comments
My wife is frustrated... It is not for the reason that you (the reader) will have immediately thought, at least I hope not, but the reason for my wife's frustration is due to her having a garden that has never been finished. My wife married a walker- that's me. This walker loves to be out in the countryside and gardening, where the layout is made...
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Behind the Picture: Breezy Buchan

May 25, 2018  •  Leave a Comment
Pictures contain so many memories, simply looking at one image can open a door to many things that would otherwise be forgotten The image below reminds me of a place I lived in the 90's - It's called "Breezy Buchan". The above image is a scan of a film print, taken around 2000 on a return visit. I worked in the village of Boddam between 1993 to...
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Significant Insignificance

May 12, 2018  •  1 Comment
A short story... As Chris drove to the dentist his mood was dark, he had £4 in his pocket and £12 in the bank - £16 to last until the end of the week until payday. His credit cards were maxed out and he just had to make do with what he had and hope that nothing unexpected would occur. His problem was that he needed to go for this dental appointme...
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A tribute to Tor Wood

April 25, 2018  •  2 Comments
Torwood is a small village outside Falkirk, it is named after the wood that borders the village, Tor wood. I drove through the village of Torwood with a heavy heart. I usually drive through here with fondness, thinking of all the walks and explorations I've had in this wooded area. This time I was sad as the trees were being harvested. From what...
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A trip into Knoydart

April 07, 2018  •  1 Comment
I was knackered, my legs were aching, my back was aching too from the heavy rucksack. I was so glad to have finally arrived at Barrisdale. I took my rucksack off outside the Barrisdale bothy and I had that now familiar feeling of “floating” that you get when removing a heavy burden from your back. I so sympathise with donkeys... It was May 2014 a...
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Wild camp on Saline Hill

March 25, 2018  •  Leave a Comment
Saline Hill is a small hill in Fife and it doesn't look much, but it is worth a visit as it commands excellent views of the surrounding countryside. Having been a number of weeks since our last outing, I had decided that I wanted pictures of the Ochil Hills and my initial thoughts were finding a spot to camp near Powmill, where the views of the Oc...
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Go for a Walk

March 08, 2018  •  3 Comments
Die with memories, not dreams. Go for a walk. I heard someone once say that "Life happens whilst you're planning something else" and this is very true. You are sitting hoping for something to come about so that your life will be better and whilst you wait for your 'chance', the clock ticks. Time is life's currency and it makes paper money look irr...
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The Lairig Leacach in Winter

February 24, 2018  •  2 Comments
I had arranged with my friend Andy to spend the night at the Lairig Leacach Bothy on Friday night, go to Staoineag Bothy on Saturday and then head for home on Sunday. No problem I thought, a bit of snow will be a bonus too! There was much more than a "bit" of snow... As we reached Spean Bridge early afternoon, I was starting to worry. The weather...
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Crawford Priory

February 08, 2018  •  3 Comments
Crawford Priory, despite its name, is a ruin of a stately home located in Springfield, near Cupar in Fife, Scotland. Built in the 18th century this building was never a priory and a great account of the history of this building, together with historical pictures can be viewed at the blog of Alex Cochrane. I first shared pictures of this place whe...
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The Woodland Shelter

January 22, 2018  •  2 Comments
"Sleeping in the woods on a Saturday night!" - There are no rock songs that I know of containing these lyrics... I have known my friend Andy since our early teens. I remember even back then, Andy was into his outdoor pursuits and it has taken me about 30 years to catch up with his hobby. We had recently decided to spend a night in a local forest,...
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A Walk in the White Stuff

January 10, 2018  •  Leave a Comment
"I fancy a walk tomorrow", Bob shouted over his garden to me. "Me too," I said, "have you seen the snow up the Ochils?" I asked, "yes," Bob said, "let's go". I am lucky to live near to the Ochil Hills. They are only a 30-minute drive for me and I can then be standing 700 metres in the crisp snow 90 minutes after leaving my car. In the winter, th...
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December 27, 2017  •  3 Comments
The late Harry Keen, who was a dear family friend, recalls his memory of New Year as a child in early 20th Century Edinburgh. Hogmanay, In the Scots it means, the last day of the year or, a gift given to children on New Year's Eve Hogmanay, the very word conjures up a mixed bag of images, from when I was a child growing up in Edinburgh, right u...
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Winter Camping

December 12, 2017  •  1 Comment
"Whatever the question, the answer is always more booze". This was the reply from my friend Andy to my text about the -4°C weather forecast for Saturday night. We were going camping then and it was December with the coldest weekend of the winter so far now predicted; our families and friends were all laughing at us. We parked in the picturesque...
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Buffalo Systems Special 6

November 12, 2017  •  Leave a Comment
The Buffalo Special 6 is a “smock” and not a jacket. Whatever it is, it is the best piece of outdoor clothing that I have bought. For three years now, I have headed to the winter hills wearing a Buffalo Systems Special 6. This is a picture of me wearing it on Beinn Fhionnlaidh in 2016. So what is special about a 3-year-old smock? In that pictur...
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October 28, 2017  •  Leave a Comment
This picture is of my friend Bob, taking a video of the whiteout conditions in which we found ourselves. The whiteout in this picture was due to heavy cloud covering a snow-covered mountaintop. We were heading from the rounded summit of Beinn Uldamain when the cloud closed in. I realised that there was no distinguishing the ground from the sky.
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