So, Er, Where’s The Ban?

Visiting Loch Lomond earlier this week I found that there was surprisingly little sign that there was a camping ban in place. I had planned to get the ferry from Tarbet to Inversnaid, and had around an hour to kill. I stopped in by the toilets/visitor centre and found a noticeboard and a rack of leaflets with information on everything from Glasgow School of Art to the Inverary Jail by way of Blair Drummond Safari Park. But nothing about the camping restrictions.

Full article: So, Er, Where’s The Ban?

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Ramblers Call for Core Paths to be shown on OS Maps

Signpost

Signpost

Two of the main deterrents to using rights of way and core paths are lack of signage and blockages to the footpaths themselves. Having created a definitive list of core paths I was disappointed to find that there is no statutory requirement to have any kind of signposting indicating the existence of the paths themselves. They say if you build it, they will come, but if you build it and don’t tell anyone, will they even know?

Ramblers (Scotland) are campaigning for core paths to be added to future editions of Ordnance Survey mapping, and this would be a great way of informing people using maps that there are paths and routes which are legally protected and which they have a right to use unimpeded.

You can show your support by signing HERE

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Arthur’s Seat, Edinburgh

“Is this the way to Arthur’s Seat?” is a question I’m asked more and more on my rambles around the Holyrood area. Since my job moved to Edinburgh I’ve found myself spending my breaks doing circuits of Holyrood Park…

Full Walk Report: Arthur’s Seat, Edinburgh

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North Lanarkshire’s Rubbish

The end of ROW SM17 & SM18 at Mountcow

The end of ROW SM17 & SM18 at Mountcow

The Christmas season usually sees an upsurge in fly-tipping, but some of the most recent cases I’ve seen were just before the festive season. Fly tippers are either becoming more brazen and seem to be going to new lengths to dump their rubbish, and by that I mean they are going off road, into woodland where they are less likely to be observed.

The first picture above is at Mountcow at the end of SM17/SM18 rights of way and is one of the worst cases of roadside dumping I’ve seen for some time. I’ve carried out numerous clean-ups at this site over the years, but this is a job which requires either a lot of manpower or plant equipment to clear away.

The right of way from Clarkston to Airdriehill (SM9) has been plagued by fly tipping at the Airdriehill end for many years, however since the gates have been removed the fly tippers have started driving up to the old Airdriehill House which is in a sorry state now, and completely unsuitable for anyone taking children or dogs due to the sheer volume of broken glass.

Airdriehill SM9

Airdriehill SM9

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Asbestos roofing?

Asbestos roofing?

Caution- Broken Glass!

Caution- Broken Glass!

Were this dumped at the roadside it would of course eventually be cleared by North Lanarkshire Council. Instead it is likely to remain in-situ for years to come.

Annieshill is also faring badly. With the chain removed from the path to allow vehicles access, fly-tippers have ventured further into the woods, with the car park and beyond now the site of repeated visits.

Old double glazing units at Annieshill

Old double glazing units at Annieshill

In the worst cases the main culprits appear to be builders, with much timber, glazing materials and old roofing in evidence.

Many years back North Lanarkshire Council installed signs warning fly-tippers that CCTV was in use. A freedom of information request suggested no such thing was ever deployed. With motion activated CCTV cameras available for under £100, NLC really has to look at installing some at known blackspots for fly-tipping. The savings, financially and environmentally would be considerable.

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Happy New Year

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New Years Day on Sron a’ Chlachain, Killin. In 60 mph+ winds, just the thing to clear away the cobwebs…

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Forrestburn Dawn

Driving back from a nightshift a few weeks back I was waylaid by a stunning inversion as I came of the M8 at Shotts. The view was amazing, normally I associate inversions with high places, but this sea of cloud was breathtaking, and you’ll understand why my journey home was slightly longer that morning…

 

forrestburn-dawn

Forrestburn Dawn

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Pentland Gold

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Turbines in a sea of fog

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On The Road to Recovery: Meall Liath na Doire

Setting off from Rannoch and climbing uphill through the thick, clammy pine trees I quickly realised that perhaps I had overestimated my abilities and my progress was not glacial, but I was well below where I used to be. My confidence was returning though, having viewed camping as off-limits for so long it was incredibly enjoyable just to be out on the hills.

Full Article : On The Road to Recovery: Meall Liath na Doire

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