Saturday, 21 January 2017

On Wednesday 18th January, 6 Biggar Ramblers met to walk from Gladhouse Reservoir to Eddleston up the remote South Esk valley. The head of the valley gives access to local highest peak Dundreich at 2,044 ft. After a rapid thaw, all the snow had gone but the group startled a perfectly white mountain hare, no longer camouflaged. Its every twist and turn could be followed as it made its rapid escape through the tussocks of heather. A picnic lunch was consumed near the summit cairn. Great panoramic views could be seen but there was a cold wind so they didn't linger and made the steep descent to Boreland Farm, then across the fields into the back of Eddleston, 7.5 miles in total. It was a linear walk so the previously parked car was used to ferry drivers back to the start while the others made their way to the Scots Pine café where the group met up for well deserved tea and cakes. It was a good day out.

Tuesday, 17 January 2017

It was minus 5 degrees when 12 Biggar Ramblers set off to walk the 5 mile Differick circular above Kirkfieldbank, an easy leg stretch on any other day. On Saturday the 14th January however, after heavy snowfall two days previously and low temperatures the night before, the route proved to be much more challenging than expected. Hard packed snow and ice as well as drifted snow had to be negotiated. The route from the houses at Greenrig followed a very straight track between fields which is said to be part of an old Roman road which led ultimately to the large Castledykes fort near Ravenstruther. The highest part of the walk at 1000ft was reached on this stretch. After 2 miles on the track, the route turned left on a minor road leading to Hawksland and then back to Greenrig following another treacherous ungritted stretch of minor road. The skies were blue so that the views of snow clad Tinto and the Lowther hills were breathtaking.

Sunday, 8 January 2017

Report on walk of 5th January, 2017
There were eleven members of Biggar Ramblers who enjoyed a very pleasant circular walk from Castlebank Park, Lanark, on a beautiful winter's day, with blue skies and good underfoot conditions.
We went through the park to the Horticultural Centre which was mothballed for the winter, but enjoyed again the wonderful carvings of the wildlife at the Fairy Dell. The walk continued up Jookers Johny's lane and on to the main road, passing Cartland Hotel and so crossed over the road to the first section of the Cartland Crags walk. This was very pleasant, quiet and still, no bird song, but views of the spires of Lanark in the distance, seen through the leafless trees. Out from the woodland setting on to the road and up the Stey Brae and back to Castlebank Park, a walk of about three and a half miles.
Walk leader Dorothy Duncan