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Sunday, 4 April 2010

Wigtownshire Ramblers-Leswalt to Larbrax April 2010

N.B.Before starting todays walk,I sliced up my great chunk of McLelland's Seriously Strong Red Cheddar,and handed it out.I apologise to any walkers who missed out.(I was the lead in the winning curling side of the Over 60's Competition at the North West Castle.McLellands were the sponsors.)

It's Saturday the 3rd of April 2010.
Todays walk is one we did in February 2008,but slightly extended.
2008 Walk

Again I'll use the press report on the blog.

Wigtownshire Ramblers Report
Saturday 3rd of April 2010

Twenty one walkers gathered at Leswalt village hall for the walk.The forecast was for occasional heavy showers.
They began by heading out of the village through the Aldouran Wetland Garden.A small number of ducks and geese were on the ponds.

Next they headed up through Aldouran glen.Aldouran comes from the Gaelic and means Glen of the Otters.Aldouran wood is owned and managed by the Woodland Trust Scotland, and is one of only a handful of "Ancient semi natural woods" left on the Rhins peninsula.
Wild garlic carpeted the woods as the group made their way up the winding path alongside the burn,emerging at Glenhead.

I love the smell of wild garlic.It's more pungent when it's flowering.
At the top end of the glen there's a rope at one side to assist the climber.Today it's covered by an all round inch thick layer of moss.
This was quite a busy road today.
The next two kilometres were along the B7043 before reaching Kathleen Cottage where a break was taken to admire a strutting peacock.
I'm not sure how this got to be called Kathleen Cottage.There have been Katherines and Kathleens in the Agnew family over the years,so it's probably named after one of them.

Now walking south through Drummullin Wood they had their first view of Lochnaw Castle over the loch.A substantial number of geese were noisily active.Daffodils and snowdrops bloomed together along the lochside.

Now a short detour took them to the walled gardens which are in the process of being restored.The group learned that when the work is complete,and on occasional days, the gardens will be open to the public.Outside the gardens,wood carvings of a Jungle Book type snake,and a tree stump chair were admired.

They continued south through Home Farm.Being a riding school a variety of horses were present in the paddocks.Young riders were being put through their paces on the return walk.

Loved this sign.

They continued south to Larbrax Cottages where they encountered a family returning from the beach.Related to one of todays walkers,it turned out to be none other than Iain Gray and his family, MSP and leader of the Scottish Labour Party.Many in the group had recognised his face,but failed to put his name to it.

New born lambs and their mothers were dotted about the adjoining fields.

The excitement over they continued on through Meikle Larbrax to the shore at Broadsea Bay.
Upon reaching the beach,lunch was taken.A heavy downpour of rain had just begun.What little shelter amongst the rocks that could be found, was taken.

The rain continued throughout the lunch break.

A group of walkers then climbed the grassy rocky slopes to look at the historical cave here.Back in 1679,Sir Andrew Agnew and his son took refuge in this cave.They were avoiding capture by the 'Highland Host',the rampant army of highlanders gathered to suppress the Covenanters.

They continued climbing up to the Sea Kings Camp fort,where wild Dog Violet was blooming.They took a moment to enjoy the views out to sea before rejoining the main group at Meikle Larbrax.

Now they retraced their steps to Home Farm.

They now took the eastern track to bring them to Lochnaw Castle.The group now stopped at the castle,where they learned some of it's history,and connections with the Agnew family.

It must cost a fortune to keep something like this upright.The ruins of the older castle can still be seen on an island in the loch.Apparently in the late 1300's Archibald the Grim besieged and sacked the older castle.It was some time before the Agnews regained the lands of Lochnaw and built a new Castle.The Agnews lived in the castle till 1997,when it was sold to someone from the far east.

Next they made their way back to the B7043,then onto Glenhead of Aldouran,where, with views over Loch Ryan the made their way back to Leswalt.
The Agnew Monument at 'The Tor of Craigoch' was missed out today.Since most of the group had already visited,and the field to cross would have been very muddy,it was perhaps a wise choice.
A very nice walk despite the weather.


  1. It seems you had a great time. I liked the castle.It reminded me Henry VIII. I don't know why.
    maybe due to unfenced children and
    other animals.:)

  2. Your friends must be unique in knowing who the Labour Party leader in Scotland is.He`s not called the "Gray Man" for nothing..!
    Great pic of the wee blackface lamb with sticky out ears Jim :)

  3. hi jim,

    well done on the curling win. we don't get the red cheddar down here and it seems you don't get cheddar that isn't red ; )

    lovely pictures, especially of the lambs. wesaw loadsoflambs at the weekend. very cute aren't they?
    it says 2009 at the top by the way.

  4. Thanks for bringing me up to date Sez.There seems to be a lot of blackface lambs with sticky out ears this year.
    As to Cheddar Cheese,I'd suggest you look at what the Wise Geek has to say about the colour of Cheddar here.
    It's in the dyes apparently.

    I agree Yağmur,it's a Henry the 8th castle.It hasn't the same bloody history as Henry the 8th though.There was one Lady Mary Montgomerie 17th/18th Century who had 21 children though.

    I guess you wont be voting for the "Gray Man" then Alex !

  5. Brilliant website, I hadn't noticed before in my searches!
    Continue the superb work!

  6. Hello,

    I have a question for the webmaster/admin here at

    Can I use part of the information from your post right above if I provide a link back to your site?


  7. To Alex (not blueskyscotland),
    I've no problem you linking to my site.
    It's the spammers I'll have no truck with.


Thanks for all your comments. I may not get to reply to them all, but you may be sure they'll be appreciated.

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