Experiencing Arran’s April Showers

Happy Easter from the gardens of Brodick Castle, Rob didn’t make it a particularly tricksy hunt…

On the first day out in the hills we got the bus westwards and down the coast to Dougarie Point and initially headed up Glen Iorsa as a group of 18 and then split up. 8 of firstly us headed up Sail Chalmadale, towards Loch Tanna – the largest but also most remote loch on Arran.

We scrambled up Beinn Bhreac and the winds had become quite strong so instead of heading up Mullach Buidhe we headed due north around Meall nan Damh to Catacol where the hotel was calling to us! After some well deserved food and drink we helped it down with a post dinner walk back to the campsite via the Lochranza Hotel Bar which was extra rammed. That and the lack of staff made for an extra stroppy barman!

This morning we headed south east to Brodick Castle to wander round the gardens is the rain…this is the roof of the Bavarian summer house beautifully adorned with fir cones:

After a rather brief tour of Brodick – cheese shop, aromatics, cash point, outdoor gear shop and cafe for coffee and cake we got the bus up to Sannox and walked the coast path back to Lochranza whilst keeping an eye out for local wildlife.

All of this has been accompanied by many many April showers, hopefully the sun will come out tomorrow!

Off to Arran

After starting at the Great Nepalese outside Euston, a few of us set off from London in the sleeper train bar – classic! Then it was another train, a ferry and a bus to get to Lochranza.

We eventually pitched our tents on the right spots in the field..initially ‘where the cars need to park’ then on the ‘tractor route’, grrr. Then it was off to check out the local spots; the sandwich pavilion at the ferry port, the hotel, the castle ruin, the golf course, the craft shop and then the distillery for a flight of delicious Arran whiskeys.

On our way back from our wander we passed the ‘natural hazards’ surrounding the 8th hole, wouldn’t fancy trying to play a ball from under one of their hooves!!

Finally a nice view of the castle on the way to the hotel for a nightcap.

The preparations are almost complete…

Maps to study and guidebooks to read.

I’ve got a lot of things to do before I leave and one of those things was to set up a blog, so that’s something I can tick off the list!

So this is my walking blog where I plan to document not just my big adventure for this year; walking Land’s End to John O’Groats this summer, but hopefully many more walks in the future.

I’m off on my final ‘training’ trip with the mountaineering club that I’m a member of; theĀ Rockhoppers. We’re going to the Isle of Arran over Easter and a few of us will be extending the trip to explore the wilds of Jura too. That will also be the first test of trying to post blog entries from the ‘field’ as it were. So come back and visit soon to read about that and LEJOG which I currently plan to commence on May 7th.


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