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Monday, 23 February 2015

Wigtownshire Ramblers - The Buchan Ridge and Loch Trool February 2015

I didn't walk with the group on Saturday.
I was indisposed due to a dodgy knee and another lingering cold.

However I've received pictures and reports from Scoop and Lionheart for both the high and low level walks they undertook.
I should mention that GI Joe led the low level walk.
Here then are the pictures.
The reports will follow the pictures.

Lionhearts pictures 
High Level Walk 
Lionheart tells me that due to an imbalance in the sexes on the high level walk, the following set of pictures should have the collective name,

The Merrick Broads 

Update 4th of March
Here's four more fine pictures I've just received from Nigella

Last time on the Buchan Ridge was returning from a Merrick climb
While we did the Buchan Ridge to Loch Enoch 

Scoop's Pictures
Low Level Walk

It was November 2012 when we last walked 

Here are the walk reports
Wigtownshire Ramblers Walk Reports

High Level Walk
Nine members assembled at Bruce's Stone for the high level walk of the day. Perhaps the forecast of wintry showers had put some off, but although there was cloud on the top of Merrick at times, our time on the hill was constant sunshine.
After crossing the Buchan bridge, we turned left through the gate and followed the path onto the lower slopes of Buchan Hill. It was warm work, and outer garments were shed as we skirted to the left of the Black Gairey, following the animal track and easiest route. Several stops to catch our breath kept the group in close company, and there was a final break in the shelter of the last rocky outcrop where we donned the outer layer again before emerging on to the exposed open top. Here the wind chill factor was felt. A short walk to the cairn for a quick photo and sweetie, and then we kept  on the move, keeping to the high ground along the Buchan Ridge, passing the second cairn and admiring Mullwharker and Corserine glowing white in the sunshine to the northeast. Along this section we saw some red grouse, and a herd of red deer watched us approach before trotting off, antlers held high. We had decided not to push our luck with the weather and tackle the full route, so a leisurely lunch was enjoyed in the lee of Craignine, looking down onto The Murder Hole, Loch Neldriken and across to Craignaw and the Dungeon hills.
The return route took us across the tussocks to the shore of Loch Neldriken, and then the path down the Mid Burn to Loch Valley and on down the Gairland Burn to Loch Trool. The clear air gave us spectacular views of the snow covered tops all around. The cars were reached without incident, and welcome refreshments enjoyed at a local hostelry.

Low level walk
The second group set off down the road to take the forest trail around Loch Trool.  Earlier wintry showers and blackening skies had not deterred 15 walkers from having one of their favourite walks in the Galloway Hills.  A few spots of rain accompanied them for a short way until they left the road and then took the now more familiar new footpath.  Huge clearances have been made in this area, around the northern shore of Loch Trool, which has opened up the views to give wide panoramas of the surrounding hills.  Sunshine lit up the raindrops on small trees beside the loch.
Crossing the Water of Trool at Caldons, the group entered the colourful woods; the orange pine needles now camouflaging the new pathway laid down to make the traversing of this section of the Southern Upland Way easier.  Reflections of the trees were admired in the still water of the loch before an early lunch stop was taken just opposite Bruce’s Stone, the walkers making the most of the shelter of remaining trees and of numerous rocks littered beside the track.  Lunch finished and the weather still holding they resumed their walk through the trees.
Glenhead Burn was crossed and the forest road was approached before long pauses were taken at the Gairland and Buchan burns which, being in spate, provided good photo opportunities. After a stiff, short climb, Bruce’s Stone was reached and the group had a spectacular point from which to view Loch Trool surrounded by numerous hills, still bathed in glorious sunshine.  From there it was a short walk back to their cars before enjoying the warm hospitality of ‘Cinnamon’, in Newton Stewart.
Next week’s walk, on Saturday 28 February, is a moderate one of 5.6 miles, from Auchenmalg.  Meet for car sharing at Riverside, Newton Stewart at 9am, at Breastworks, Stranraer at 9.30am or at the walk start (NX 236 518) at 10am.  New walkers are welcome but asked to first phone the walk leader on 01776 840636 for details.


  1. Amazing photos from around Loch Trool by Scoop - you've won me over! What a gorgeous walk.

  2. Some lovely pictures. Almost looks like autumn again with the colours around the loch side.

    1. Tulips and daffodils are emerging Bob, soon be spring.

  3. sorry that you were not feeling well enough for the walk
    i hope you are feeling better!

    1. Thanks Tammie, much appreciated and I'm OK now.
      Not enough ice for me this year though, good job I can get my fix from your posts.


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