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Sunday, 3 February 2008

Wigtownshire Ramblers-Isle of Whithorn

Saturday the second of February and I wondered if todays walk would still be on after the heavy snow of last night.
I telephoned the walk leader to make sure there had been no cancellation,and after confirmation set off to join the group at the St Ninians Cave carpark.
I needn't have worried,they'd had no snow to speak of at the southern end of the Machars.
Todays walk was to be from the Isle of Whithorn to St Ninians Cave a walk of some
5 and a 1/2 miles,although one group member suggested the signs are wrong and it's actually 6 and a 1/2 miles.
With all the group gathered (14 walkers today) we piled into half the vehicles and drove over to the walk start point at the Isle of Whithorn.

The weather to begin with was quite nice and just a little breezy as we left the Isle of whithorn and headed on to the cliff paths.The walk would take us around the second most southerly point in Scotland,Burrowhead.

For anyone with a love of rugged coastlines this must rank high on any of the uk's clifftop walks.As i mentioned on my YouTube video 'Five Minutes At Burrowhead' here is where the closing scenes of the original 'Wickerman' were filmed.
A lot of photographs were taken.I hadn't initially noticed that my lenses were misting up with the sea spray,and so a few of mine were not very brilliant.

As we got closer to Burrowhead the wind began to pick up a little,and sometimes the path would get closer to the cliff edges.The views became quite spectacular,and the cliffs took on a look of the North Antrim Coast and the high basalt columns surrounding the Giants Causeway.

For our break we sheltered from the wind in a large old brick building in the vicinity of Burrowhead Holiday village.There was an impression from a knowledgeable group member that this may have once been a shower block.A remnant from when this used to be a military establishment.
After leaving Burrowhead the path turned more North Westerly which meant the wind was more sideways on.At first this seemed like a bonus,but the weather was becoming more overcast and the wind more 'Bracing'.

One group member was blown over by the wind.She was ok,and rather pleased that at least it proved that 'The diet's working'.

We didn't go down to St Ninians cave.The offer was made to me that we could,but with the worsening wind i think most group members were ready to start back inland to the carpark.This area of South West Scotland is its 'Cradle of Christianity'.St Ninian is credited with bringing Christianity to Scotland way back in 397,while the Romans were here.Pilgrims arrive here from all over the world to walk the 'Pilgrims Way' to Whithorn Priory.I will explore the cave leisurely some other time.
As with all my walks up to now,i thoroughly enjoyed myself.I'm slowly getting to know this admirable group of amiable people.I got to know a few more today.
After the walk I accepted an invitation to join some of the group for coffee at the 'Steam Packet' in the Isle of Whithorn.Why did all the men go home?

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