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Sunday, 22 July 2012

Wigtownshire Ramblers - Hills of Glenmount - Craigengillan - Ness Glen July 2012

I'm leading today's walk.
I've arranged a sixteen seater bus from Wigtownshire Community Transport.
We're a group of twenty four today as we're joined by our Ayrshire Blogger, his Colour Co-Ordinator, the Teacher and the Young Teacher and our man from Paisley.
My back up is my fellow walker from Cumnock.
Take a look at Gordon's Blog for a picture of the bus and pictures of the walk leader.
I uploaded a post on Ness Glen last November
and if you do go over to Gordon's Blog, you'll find at least a couple of posts on the Glenmount Hills.
As usual the press report follows the images.

After parking up at the Roundhouse, we put in our order for goodies and scones with Brian the proprietor.

Walk Start

Rowantree Crag (This picture's from the recce,we missed it out today)

The Back Markers

Click the link for some wonderful views

Ascending Big Hill of Glenmount

Group photo and me with Loch Finlas below
(Thanks to Scoop for a number of today's pictures)

Descent of the Big Hill of Glenmount

In the glen amongst the tussocks

Beginning and reaching the Wee Hill of Glenmount

Lunch atop the Wee Hill

Heading to Little Shalloch

Heading away from Little Shalloch
(I seem to have somehow deleted my pictures of this ruined farmstead)

Dalcairney Knockdon Drovers Road

Rest break on Carwaur

Heading for Craigengillan

The Fort and the new Dark Sky Observatory

Craigengillan House from the rear
(This picture was taken on the recce)

The Teachers
(The History of Craigengillan makes good reading)

Picturesque thatched cottage complete with Smiley

Bridge on the River Doon at the start of Ness Glen

Footbridge over the River Doon

"It's really cold, can I come out"

The stunningly beautiful Ness Glen

Refreshments at the Roundhouse

Thanks to my backup lady for doing an excellent job keeping the tailenders in order.

Wigtownshire Ramblers 
Saturday the 21st July 2012

Twenty-four walkers met at the Roundhouse on Loch Doon for the walk start. Two thirds of them enjoyed a comfortable ride up in a Wigtownshire Community Transport bus.
The forecast was for white cloud with occasional sunshine.
With a resplendent Loch Doon behind, the walk started westerly with a gradual climb of Glessel Hill.
From here the next target of Big Hill of Glenmount could be seen. First a scrubby patch of moorland had to be crossed. Occasional quad bike tracks assisted, but tussocks and bog slowed down progress.
Eventually a drystane dyke below the hill was reached and the going became easier.
After a steady climb the trigpoint on the summit at 382 metres was reached. There were no far reaching views today, but magnificent views of the Galloway hills and surrounding lochs were enjoyed. Also in view was the nearby town of Dalmellington.
After a short break the walk continued. A long downhill stretch, more tussocks and a steady climb via bracken-strewn slopes now brought the group to the Wee Hill of Glenmount. With occasional glimpses of the sun, a lunch break was taken.
Looking back, the Big Hill of Glenmount looked like an enormous pyramid. A picturesque drystane sheepfold enhanced the view.

Following a leisurely lunch the group now made their way north over moorland to the ruins of the former farmstead of Little Shalloch.
The boggy track now accessed was once a main thoroughfare connecting the hamlets of Dalcairney and Knockdon. After following the track northeast for one kilometre, a change of direction east across the moors brought them to the small hill of Carwaur. Here another short break was taken while the sun shone.
Fields of horses were now visible as the estate of Craigengillan was in reach.
Also in view was the almost completed Scottish Dark Sky Observatory. Due to open in October, It will be open to the public and school groups for day-time and night-time visits.

After passing a small reservoir the group now entered the estate and made their way to Craigengillan House. Here the walk leader told some of the history of the founding family in 1580, the McAdams, and their descendants, who remained the proprietors until 1999. They also heard the tragic tale of one Quintin McAdam who died in 1806. They also learned of the hard work of the present owner Mark Gibson in opening up the estate and Ness Glen to the public. He was named the UK’s country person of the year in 2009.

A short tour of the estate, including a lovely view of a picturesque thatched cottage, now saw the group reach the northern end of Ness Glen.
Restored to it’s full glory in 2004/5 this geographical delight of the Victorians followed the River Doon back to it’s source of Loch Doon. A Site of Special Scientific Interest the deep gorge has a myriad of rare mosses and ferns, while the river runs over rapids, falls and fast flowing streams. Needless to say the photographers in the group had a field day.
Back at the walk start, the proprietor of the Roundhouse catered admirably with tea, coffee and various scones and confectionery for the after walk refreshments.
It was a contented crowd that mounted the bus back to Wigtownshire.

The next walk on Saturday the 28th of July is a 6-mile walk in the South Rhins, which will include a strawberry tea at Logan Gardens. ( Not lunch as advertised on the programme)
Meet for car sharing at the Breastworks, Stranraer 9.30am,the Riverside, Newton Stewart 9.00am or the walk start at Logan Gardens Car Park (NX 097 425) at 10am. For further details or if going to the start please phone the walk leader on 01776 840636. New members are always welcome.


  1. man your country is so freakin beautiful. i hope one day i can find myself there.

  2. I look at these photos and I have to admit I'm a bit jealous as I'm here working in front of my computer.

    Thank you for the inspiration though!


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  3. A Thatcher cottage down that way - now that's not to be expected. Very neat thatch too - I'll bet they've had to import a man from down south to do that.

    Parking the minibus next to a cafe seems very civilised to me.

  4. Damn, you just have too much fun!!!!!

  5. Aguilar - I agree my country is beautiful, and if you visit try and get hear when it's not raining. We're a bit like Ireland with the weather.

    Welcome to my blog Marilou, it's nice to know I can attract a classy Canadian fashionista to my pages.

    I think you're right about the thatcher being a southerner Sandy, when I was over in the Western Isles, the thatcher renewing the hostels was from Somerset.

    I think we'd have a lot more fun if you joined us on a hike Lisa

  6. Good to see you are still getting out in spite of our summer.I,m starting to get cabin fever up here and am going a bit wild and feral.I feel like a cave bear as Alex seems to be in festering mode these days.

  7. ...........and in spite of my own problems Bob.
    I'll know what's wrong with me mid August after I've been probed via a cystoscopy.


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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