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Sunday, 18 May 2008

Wigtownshire Ramblers-Bennan

Saturday the 17th May 2008.Todays walk is on the programme as forest trails.I've had a painful click in my left knee since yesterday.I hope it doesn't become a problem.
We're starting from the Glentrool visitors centre at Stroan Bridge.There are fifteen walkers today.Almost all are regular walkers that i've come to know.

Once we're assembled as a group,our walk leader informs us we're heading to the summit of Bennan.We're soon heading off,hoping to keep up a reasonable pace.The visitors centre stops serving refreshments at 4.15 and a number of ramblers want to be back before it closes.

Bennan at 562 mtrs sits under Benyellery 719 mtrs in a line with the Merrick 843 mtrs.A radio mast is perched on the summit.

As usual there are plenty of photocalls.Who's that hiding behind the tall chap?

We're soon gaining height with views to the south of Lammachan....

...and north west below us is Palgowan Farm.

It's a long gradual climb and everything behind to the west comes into view.

The track does a steady climbing arc around Bennan,and we can see people heading upwards towards Benyellary.

We've been walking about two and a quarter hours as we near the summit.As with a lot of the Galloway hills,there are small lochans at this height.

Now at the summit and a welcome break.It's a lot colder up here,and everyone is now well wrapped up.My knee hasn't got any worse.I'm sure i'll be ok now.

Even the dullness doesn't stop the views.Here we can see over to the Artfield Fell wind farm...

...and here over to Ailsa Craig with the Mull of Kintyre beyond.

Refreshed and wrapped we set off on the return leg.We're heading down one of the steeper slopes of Bennan.

We descend between rocky outcrops and more lochans.Bowl like depressions in one of the rocks.What made these?

This is the most scenic part of the walk.To the north east is Benyellary and a mist shrouded Merrick.

To the south west we can see the Mull of Galloway,and in front of us the hills that encircle Glentrool.

Single file for a safer descent...

...and watching where you put your feet makes for a steady climb down.

We're too soon back onto the main track where forestry operations have been taking place.It's suggested that these odd thin trees have been left up because they didn't meet the required girth.Sounds like a plausible explanation to me.

Not far now.Wait for me!
A few hundred yards from the finish and a pedometer reads 9.2 miles.
I joined a few other walkers for a very welcome cup of tea at the visitors centre.My knee has sorted itself out.All in all a very good walk in excellent company.

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