Come back, I’ve left ma pieces!
The camping ban in Loch Lomond was something else to contend with- I refuse to pay to camp out of principle, so I decided that much of Loch Lomond was out- until I stumbled on a solution: boats.
There’s a ferry from Tarbet on west Loch Lomondside to Inversnaid on the east side, cleverly bypassing the area at the south of the loch which falls within the camping ban area and dropping you bang on the West Highland Way, around four miles south of Doune Bothy.
Full Trip Report: West Highland Way: Inversnaid to Ardleish
Edinburgh to Airdrie on Runkeeper.
Having moved to Edinburgh earlier this year I’ve not been cycling to the same extent I was before. I was regularly cycling part of my commute from Plains to Bathgate or occasionally to Uphall or Edinburgh itself. I’ve found that while Edinburgh has a lot of cycle provisions (especially off road cyclepaths) it isn’t conducive to a long unimpeded run on the bike. The road from Drumgelloch to Armadale is; around 12 or 13 miles with no junctions to give way at and no traffic signals to stop for. So, with my troublesome knee having been quiet for a few days I set off from Edinburgh late yesterday morning, Airdrie bound. I was averaging just under 5 minutes a mile in the confines of Edinburgh, and it wasn’t until I was clear of Bathgate that my times started to improve.
Walking from the Blackhill Transmitter to Mid Bracco
As I passed the Owl and Trout at Hillend a group of hillwalkers came on to the roadside and I drew to a juddering halt as I recognised David Dunn and his wife who had both joined me last year on a walk as part of the North Lanarkshire Walking Festival. They were out with Monklands Ramblers carrying out the same walk from Salsburgh to Caldercruix– and had just been talking about me to the rest of the group! It was a strange coincidence to meet up here at exactly the same time. A few minutes earlier or later and we’d never have met up!
We said our goodbyes, the Ramblers heading in to Caldercruix for the bus back to Airdrie, while I set off on the bike for the last few miles to the town. Tired as I was I think I may just have got there first…
I was in Italy recently and having had a fair bit of knee strain decided against talking any walking gear, but when I got there things kind of eased off and felt up for a few light rambles. I was in the town of Tirano, on the Italian/Swiss border, and happened upon an outdoors shop there and thought I’d pick up a cheap pair of poles. In the end I found myself leaving with a pair of Camp Sonic Alu walking poles, and very pleased I was with them too.
Full Review Here: Camp Sonic Alu Walking Poles
Looking north up the path
Some time back I wrote that Right of Way SM10 (Ballochney Road to Jarvie Avenue) was in the process of being upgraded after being threatened with closure due to vandalism. The path was further threatened by a sinkhole which appeared at the end of Moffat View. I visited the path recently and found that access there has been significantly improved, with the section from Moffat View now properly surfaced, and a new access installed onto Killearn Crescent. Far from becoming an eyesore, this has actually become an asset to the community and has allowed quicker and easier access to the village from the new housing development.
New access at Killearn Crescent
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?
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
“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