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Sunday, 18 December 2011

Wigtownshire Ramblers Cairngaan December 2011

It's Saturday the 17th of December 2011.
Our walk today is our annual trip to the southern end of our lovely country and West Cairngaan farm.
They haven't had a drop of snow here.
Previous walks here.
1st January 2011
30th October 2009

It's a wet start as a rain/hail shower interrupts the walk leader's pre walk talk.
I'll publish her account of the walk after the images.

Nineteen of us set off along a muddy farm track.

We're soon heading down the lovely Auchie Glen.Our walk leader today is 'The Weaver' and her husband was responsible for the planting of most of the trees down here.He's paid back any carbon footprint he may have left.A wonderful achievement.

From the glen we emerge onto the Mull road.

There's some high cloud formations in the sky today.

' The Kirk Burn led to Portankill beach, passing by the remains of old Kirkmaiden church and burial ground, perhaps dedicated to St Catherine, recorded in 1386 but replaced in 1638 by the Kirkmaiden Kirk Covenant. The remains are now little more than grassy banks covering the tumbled foundations stones.'

We take a closer look today.This hollow was the church base. Couldn't find any old artefacts...I'll find a gold cross one of these days.

Here's Scoop intent on getting the shot.
She's kindly contributed pictures once again to this blog.

Here's a few.
She's like a praying mantis as she waits with camera poised at obstacles.

We now reach the coastline where we can look across at the snow covered Galloway Hills.
By all accounts from other walkers there wasn't any snow nine miles south of Newton Stewart.

We're down on Portankill Beach across Luce Bay from Port William in the Machars.
Here's a nice bit of seaweed.

Now we reach Carrickamurlan, we lunched here the last time round.

Above is another selection of Scoops pictures.She's gone for silhouette and cumulus here by the looks of it.
Nicely done Scoop.

There's some great rock formations along this stretch of coast.There's also St Medan's cave which I've covered in a previous post.I'll mark this for future exploration.

A snow capped Cairnsmore of Fleet

East Tarbet Bay.

After crossing the Mull road we're overlooking West Tarbet Bay.
There's something in the water.Because it doesn't seem to be moving,the doubters think it's a small bouy.
Having been down here a few times I know different.
When the 'Bouy' vanishes and resurfaces at various different points the doubters no longer doubt......

.....we're in the company of one or more seals.There are nearly always seals in West Tarbet Bay, take my word for it.
Lunchtime was spent watching and wondering where the seal would next surface.
After lunch we headed north on the return journey.After the earlier shower of rain/hail it's been fair and now we're getting some sunshine.

The very scenic Mull Glen comes next.I must ask the Weaver about the 'Kings Well' which is on the OS map,she's never mentioned it or pointed it out.

Another interesting spot for exploration is below this headland with caves called Belloue and Carrickgill.
The weaver goes on the hunt for an object she'd seen left by some campers.....

.....and it's found ready for the next brave souls to build a campfire. I found the lid close by and replaced it.

The OS map also indicted the remains of a 'Homestead' here.Taking the steeper high ground I and others avoided the muddy crossing that isolated this detached walker.

We're on the last stretch back to West Cairngaan, the lighthouse at the Mull's been flashing intermittently today.

Our walk leader now cautions us to stop,she's noticed a fast boat coming round the headland.
As it comes into view we can see it's the new Portpatrick Lifeboat.
The RNLI Tamar lifeboat is named after Dr John Buchanan Barr MBE, a distinguished GP who died in 2003 at the age of 93. During the war he served in the Royal Army Medical Corps as a captain and major, and saw action in North Africa with the 78th Division, for which he later received the MBE. After the war he returned to Glasgow to work as a GP.

Dr Buchanan Barr and his wife Catherine often visited Portpatrick and Catherine, who died in 2008 at the age of 98, requested that £2.6 million be left to the RNLI to pay for a new lifeboat for Portpatrick named after her husband, and carrying the inscription ‘He saved so many lives during the war.’

We think this may have been a training run.The Pilot or crew spotted us on the cliffs and sounding it's horn a number of times gave us a cheery hello.
As usual down this corner of Scotland we finished the walk in style with traditional farmhouse hospitality.

Walk report to follow here.


  1. such a gorgeous walk. i would love to take that one! I love that the weaver lead you and her husband is the tree planter!

    and you probably know that stone and seaweed photo i think is wonderful.

  2. Nice pictures, especially the bit of seaweed on the pebbles! Looks like an enjoyable walk.

  3. Hi Jim.
    You have so much good coastline down there,looks like my kind of walk.The kettle photo could be any size..10 feet across.I thought it was a large sculpture at first.
    I got hit by a van today at speed that shot through a red light at a busy crossing.I,m ok and feeling relief that I,ll still be around for christmas.Sore but alive.Its actually a good feeling :)

  4. Thanks Tammie, I think I mentioned it before but millions of years ago Scotland and America were connected.
    There might be some Montana stones on that beach (or vice versa).
    Seasons Greetings

    Thank you Maria, have you lots of snow in Finland yet ?

    Hi Bob, happy healing if I can say that.I liked the kettle too, an experiment in dimension ha ha

    Merry Christmas folks.

  5. Your to kind no I'm not a pro I have sold some stuff but just a keen amateur... enjoying all your shots also!

    This is another interesting post my father was looking for the remains of the old Kirkmaiden church a couple of years ago but he was looking on the other side of the burn and didn't find it. Thanks to this he'll know where to look next time cheers.


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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