Saturday the 14th of July 2012
We're on the North Rhins for today's walk.
Previous posts from 2008 are here.
It's a cool wind and occasional clouds but we've a good forecast.
My report for the press will follow the pictures.
Shags, a lone bird and the Ebbstone
Wild Orchid and Ragged Robin
Approaching Port Long
P & O Ferry
This was a trial of a custom timer which takes shots in rapid succession. It should be done with the aid of a tripod as anyone can see.
RAF North Cairn
Seals and seabirds
(A step in the right direction)
Shags and guano
North Cairn Chain Home Radar Station
He must have waited in the same spot for Scoop to come along. She said she kissed it, but is still waiting for her prince to arrive.
Oust Rocks and Bloody Slouch
(Nothing personal it's the name of the rocky feature)
From various distances
Lighthouse, lunch and leaving
Corsewall Castle ruins
This picture was from a distance, it appeared to have the small yacht in tow.
Equine and Bovine
Kellies Cottage and Arran View
I got excited seeing the name Skinningrove on the steel girder
I knew I'd been in my steelmaking days, the trouble was I told someone it was between Rotherham and Sheffield, and I remembered when I got home it's up with the pigeon fanciers in the North East of England, just south of Redcar now I remember.
Last pictures of the day
I believe the flower is Yellow Loosestrife
Apparently a medicinal herb.
Here's the report.
Saturday the 14th of July 2012-07-15
Eighteen walkers met up near South Cairn for the coastal walk from Dally Bay to Corsewall point and the lighthouse.
The weather forecast was favourable with broken sunshine and a cool wind.
Accessing the coastal path via a farm track, the first visual delight came in the form of flocks of Eider ducks swimming around Dally Bay.
This was only a prelude to the vast number of sea and land birds seen throughout the walk north.
Gannets, Plovers, Shags, Curlews, Oystercatchers, Peewits, Fulmars and various divers were among the species identified.
To begin with, the path was occasionally boggy. Small burns were carefully crossed. A misjudged step resulted in the occasional wet boot.
A short distance out in the bay stood the concrete plinth of the now redundant Ebbstone, once a shipping beacon.
After following the rocky shoreline beyond Portlong and Portnaughan Bays the ruins of the North Cairn Radar Station was reached. Here the walk leader explained a little of the history of the site. Chain Home was the codename for the ring of coastal ‘Early Warning’ radar stations built by the British before and during the Second World War and North Cairn was part of that ring. It’s easy to imagine, considering the substantial remnants that remain, the hive of activity of up to 300 personnel scanning the skies for danger.
Reaching Port Gavillan, a short stop was taken to look over at the activity on the Genoch Rocks. Seals were in abundance. While a number basked on the rocks others in the water kept popping their heads up. One small peaked outcrop was white topped with guano from the colony of shags in residence.
The walk continued with constant views of Ailsa Craig and ferries from Loch Ryan across the North Channel.
Wild flowers flourished and delighted the amateur botanists in the group. Various campion, ragged robin, forget me not and wild orchids were abundant.
Approaching Corsewall Point, a mention was made of the wreck of the Firth of Cromarty in 1898 and her cargo of whisky. Needless to say, a short forage by a few ramblers proved fruitless.
After passing Oust, Bloody and Horseback rocks, Corsewall Lighthouse was reached. Looking resplendent with a fresh coat of whitewash, this magnificent structure designed by Robert Stevenson and built in 1815 is now a luxury hotel.
A lunch break was taken overlooking a sheltered rocky inlet just beyond the lighthouse.
After lunch the group now headed inland for the return journey by road and farm track.
Heading east they passed the ruins of Corsewall Castle. At the next junction they turned southwest where a gradual incline took them beyond the farms of West Kirkbryde and Knockneen. Views of the Ayrshire coast, Arran and the Mull of Kintyre were extensive. Even the Paps of Jura made an appearance.
The delightful cottages of Kellies and Arran View with their many strange and wonderful garden ornaments came next.
Reaching North Cairn, a recently constructed track took them now to Knocktim from where the road to South Cairn took them back to the cars.
A wonderful day walking was concluded with a visit to the Conservatory at the Soleburn Garden centre for tea, coffee and cakes.
The next walk on Saturday the 21st of July is a 7 mile hill and glen walk from Loch Doon, taking in Glenmount, Craigengillan Estate and Ness Glen.
Meet for the minibus or car sharing at the Breastworks, Stranraer 8.30am,the Riverside, Newton Stewart 9.00am or the walk start at the Roundhouse on Loch Doon (NS 476 012) at 10am. For further details or if going to the start please phone the walk leader on 01671 403351. New members are always welcome