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Sunday, 3 August 2008

Wigtownshire Ramblers-Black Craig of Dee

Saturday the 2nd of August and heavy showers forecast.Woke up feeling rough,but decided a walk could only do me good.We number thirteen today as we meet at the walk start at Clatteringshaws visitors centre.
Black Craig or Cairnsmore of Dee via Benniguinea is where were headed,and the forest track opposite the visitors centre is where we begin.

It soon warms up and people start stripping off coats.. we get views of neighbouring hills.
Things change quickly as we take the Benniguinea track-it starts pouring down.
Coats and waterproofs are hurriedly donned.

It's still raining as we reach the slopes of Benniguinea,and when the question 'Who wants to go up and see the tower' was asked,there was a notable silence.

At this point we leave the good track and head into heavy and boggy heather.

This is where i start finding it heavy going.

At least the rains now stopped and the views are coming.

Now we're on the slopes of Black Craig of Dee and the contour lines on the map are fairly close.
I've done harder and higher walks,but i'm struggling up here.I'll make it though.

Halfway up and the view back to Benniguinea and Clatteringshaws loch.
Coming to the summit and i'm well behind the group.The walk leader drops back to accompany me the last stretch.I hope i'm as thoughtful when i lead my first walk.

After a bite to eat,a cup of coffee,and some of the deputy walk leaders glucose sweets i'm ready to take pictures again.

At 1617 feet the Black Craig of Dee isn't particularly high,but the views are extremely good.

Again back over Benniguinea and Clatteringshaws Loch...

...down to New Galloway,Balmaclellan...

...Earlstoun Loch...

...and Dalry(St Johns town of Dalry to the uninitiated).

Now it's time to begin the return route.
We're heading for the Raiders Road which will take us back to Clatteringshaws Loch.

A mix of crag and heather on this first part...

...carefully tread or should that be trod..

..then back into the rough stuff..

..with the fence returned to it's original position,time for a short break

Over the Laggan Burn.I wonder how many Laggans there are in Scotland and Ireland.Quite a few i'd have thought.

We've reached the Raiders Road where some of the walkers get themselves more aptly kitted out for this stretch.

We're alongside the River or Black Water of Dee,there a good flow here today.

Part of the 'Art in the forest project' this ’The Path’ is a 50 metre labyrinth by Jim Buchanan.

Now across the A712 to..

..Clatteringshaws Dam...

..where a few of us take a close look at the outflow pipe.Wonder why they're letting so much out,the dam level is quite low.Perhaps they've had a long range weather forecast!

A short climb and over a fence(or in my case a wall-where i took a tumble)...

...and we're alongside the loch.

With a couple of walkers taking the waters edge route we're back at the car park.
Although i struggled for some of the walk,i thoroughly enjoyed it.
I'll sleep well tonight.

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