Saturday, July 29, 2006

July Highlights

Today is the start of West Kilbrides scarecrow festival, but at the moment its slinging it down, I think I'll leave the rest of the picture taking until tomorrow.

I suppose the highlight of my month was the River Ayr walk from Glen Buck to Ayr, 42miles in all.
Having managed 32miles on a single day on the West Highland Way a few weeks back I decided to try to walk the River Ayr way in a single 24hour period, so on the 10th of July Anne dropped me off at glen Buck at midnight and off I went.
The first half hour or so was a bit spooky until I got used to walking in the dark, occasionally using my torch to check the path, owls were hooting, bats flying and birds fluttering away as I startled them from their roosts.
It was lovely walking as the sun rose red into the morning sky, a family of herons was startled off their roost tree and a pale owl flew silently on front of me.
By 8am I'd reached Catrine and had a short snooze beside the mill pond.
I got talking to an ex farmer from Zimbabwe, he'd been given a week to leave the country and ended up here through the kindness of some friends from the village.
After the short snooze I wandered into catrine and had an unexpected piece of luck finding Gracy's Kitchen open for breakfast.

Three mile downriver from Catrine is the gorge at Mauchline its a real gem, but beyond this the walk hasn't been sorted through Barskimming estate and they aren't too welcoming so I've been told, luckily I didn't have any upsetting encounters, so it was plain sailing to Failford and lunch at Stair Inn, a lovely steak pie and a well deserved pint of cool beer.

The next section of the walk hasn't been sorted either but the south side of the river is easy walking along to Annebank and Auchincruive where I picked up the official way again after texting Anne an update.
By this time I'd developed a small blister on my left heel so slapped on a Compeed anti blister pad, its great stuff, really does the job but takes ages before it can be removed.
The last few miles into Ayr aren't very exciting but I ended the walk down by the harbour at 5pm, a total time of 17 hours on the trail.
It was nice that the paddle steamer Waverley was berthed in the harbour, took some time for a couple of pictures and a coffee before Anne drove me back up the road very happy with my outing, however it did take me two days to catch up on my missed nights sleep!

Photos of the walk here


Blogger Jinxx said...

Do you reckon that it would be possible to cycle the route

6:00 PM  
Blogger Whee said...

Yes, easily, there are some silly bike unfriendly stiles and steps but no great probelms at all. The Barskimming estate has still to be sorted and I suspect there will be a few more bike unfriendly stiles to negotiate.

6:16 PM  

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