Tuesday, January 30, 2007

A new route

Dailly Village centre

Last week I did a loop around Dailly windfarm and it was nice enough for me to declare a NEW ROUTE so today after a little walk up at Parkhill wood Lochwinnoch I put together the map and description and stuck it into my web site.

Up at Lochwinnoch today there was a little more than recently in the way of birdlife, got a bit of video of goldeneye, whooper swan, Grey Heron, cormorant, blue tit and goldfinch, so it was quite a nice little visit.
I've still to view the clips but I'm hopeful of some nice shots.

Monday, January 29, 2007

Around and about West Kilbride

Duck or Grouse

Got out on the bike this morning over some of my secret trails near home.
There seem to be some people out there that dont like mountain bikers and put obstacles along the tracks so I try to keep them as natural looking as I can.
There are also some cyclist that just dig up the ground into a mess making trails, I just hope they don't find any of mine to dig over, hence the secrecy.

PM Anne and I had a stroll over behind Law Hill, it was cool but the views were nice, so took some pictures along the way and added a bit of the morning cycle to produce a bit of video.

Sunday, January 28, 2007

A grizzly day

Fairlie Glen

Didn't fancy the look of the weather for the MTB this morning, so after a bit of picture doctoring I went a sheltered strole up Fairlie Glen.
I'd intended going into Kelburn for a loop but ended up burn splodging up Fairlie Glen taking photos and video just pleasantly passing the time.
PM did some more photo doctoring, then had a jog down to the beach, my that was hard work!
I havn't done any running for a couple of weeks and it sure felt like it!

A video of Fairlie Glen from some time ago here.

A few photos here.

Walk description here.

Saturday, January 27, 2007

Newton Stewart

Orchid in The Buck Cafe Straiton

Anne and I went off down to Straiton and Newton Stewart over the past two days.
We took walk up Bennan at Straiton Friday morning followed by a walk in the ancient Oak Wood of Knockman just north of Minigaff in the afternoon, before treated ourselves to a night in Creebridge House Hotel, pleasant suroundings and a very nice evening meal.
There was a birthday party on in the hotel so it was all go up to midnight.
Today we went across to Glen Trool for a walk up to Loch Valley.
Glen Trool was nice but the walk was pretty awfull, really boggy with slippy rocks that were hard to avoid, and it rained.
We had a picnic lunch on a tiny beach by the loch as the weather closed in, so we just made our way back, getting rather wet and cold, managed a few pictures for the album.
On the way back home we stopped off at the Buck Cafe in Straiton for a coffee and a nice bit of cake.

Thursday, January 25, 2007

The big downhill

Crosbie reservior and Arran

Sunshine, no wind and a sharp frost, a combination thats hard to resist if you enjoy mountain biking, the mud's frozen, the sunshine and low temperature makes climbing almost enjoyable, and no wind chill means sitting and admiring the view is a pleasure rather than a pain.
Initially I thought I'd go across to Bradshaw ruin but changed my mind in favour of THE BIG DOWNHILL on Kaim, glad I did the views were stunning, the ground was firm and it was just fabulous.
On route I didn't rush along just took my time taking a bit of video here and there, I still worked up a good sweat on the climb up to 300m, but I had my deserved reward after a stop in the quarry for a snack 20minutes of marvellous downhill......wheeeeeeeee!

A short video of today here.

Wednesday, January 24, 2007

Dailly Windfarm

Dailly Windfarm

Had a great day on the MTB today down at Dailly, cycling through the windfarm, quite a short run but I put an extra loop west of Dailly to make sure I spent more time cycling than driving.
The windfarm tracks were pretty grotty all grey whindust and horribly wet, but at least they were firm(ish).
It was cold but luckily there was no wind so just about managed to stay warm during the run.
Stopped off at Tilly's tea room for a coffee snack warm up before doing the extra loop to fill the day.
Took a bit of video along the way, view it here.

Tuesday, January 23, 2007

Mauchline Gorge

Wallace's Cave

Went down to Mauchline Gorge today to do a loop on the MTB.
The sandstone span of the railway viaduct is the largest stone arch in Europe
The gorge is facinating about 150ft deep cut into sandstone that at one time was part of a desert when this land was nearer the equator, hard to believe.
Cup and ring marked rocks hundreds of years old, and more recent remains of a mill laid tunnelled through the rocks, its a lovely place to linger.
The new River Ayr Way now has a new bridge higher up above the gorge making the traverse of the gorge a piece of cake, at one time it was quite dangerous if the river was up a bit.
After the gorge I cycled over to view Auchinleck House and to visit Wallace's Cave then Dumfies house and into Auchinleck town
It started to snow quite heavily in Auchinleck so I decided to cut the route short, going directly to Catrine and back to the car.
Grand day on the bike even with the snow.

A short video of todays cycle can be viewed here.

Very similar route description here.

Monday, January 22, 2007

Pottering and video

Arran from Seamill beach

What a lovely day, crisp and clear, so I was off like a shot down the beach pottering about taking video as I went.
I cycled over Goldenberry then back home for lunch, afterwards I went up Biglees quarry again pottering and videoing as I went.
Played about at Biglees upper falls before making my way home, absolutely great fun.

View my local trails here.

Sunday, January 21, 2007

A lucky day on the bike

Snowdrops in Fularton wood

Graham and I were off to do a route from Troon to Ayr along the coast and then up stream along the river to Failford.
On the way down we passed two road accidents, a car through the crash barrier and one on its roof on the other carriageway, no doubt due to the fresh fallen hail.
However all day we managed to miss the showers, but only just, we followed the new river Ayr path some way but went through Enterkin as it avoids a rubbish section of the new path to Stair.
Soup and coffee and a bit of a warm up at Stair Inn was most welcome before we carried on along the new singletrack to Failford, then to Tarbolton (along a very wet farm track) and back through Monkton.
It was a lovely day out but only because we were lucky to dodge the hail showers.

View a similar route here.

Video of the day here.

Friday, January 19, 2007

A Kelburn Loop

Kelburn Castle

The weather forcast lead me to believe I might get out on the bike this morning but it wasn't to be, there was a heavy shower about 10am, the sky was heavy so I decided to go up to Kelburn for a walk.
There was a shoot in progress but luckily they were moving position in their 4X4s as I was passing so there was no problem.
I went up to high Kelburn then unusually I did a loop down past Kelburn Castle, I avoid that area normally as they charge entry to the grounds, no one bothered as I passed the centre and I completed a nice figure of eight walk finishing down Fairlie Glen and along Miller Walk.

Wednesday, January 17, 2007

Biglees and Kelburn

Just went a local gad about today up Biglees and then into Kelburn.
Took a few photos along the way, see some below.




Tuesday, January 16, 2007

A beautiful day along the cut.

Loch Thom

On this lovely day Anne and I went up to Cornalees to walk the Greenock cut, anticlockwise to make sure we got the best views.
It was very slightly hazy but the views were still great.
We took lots of photos as we strolled along enjoying the sun.

View a walk description here.

Saturday, January 13, 2007

A no cycling week

Fairlie Castle waterfall

Monday I woke up with a sore throat and chest so I haven't been on the MTB all week, still got out and about though clearing trails and taking short walks to keep my head clear.
Today we took a strole up Fairlie Glen out of the strong breeze and before the rain set in seriously, view a short video of Fairlie Glen Waterfalls here.

Midweek Anne and I went down to Dundonald Hill to check out the path construction, they're about 70% done so there should be a nice through route and double loop around the hill, I'm looking forward to giving it a go, however first I've got to shake off this cold.

Present Dundonald route here, but its super muddy at the moment.

Sunday, January 07, 2007

Failford to Stair

Fungi at Failford

Anne and I were off visiting some old friends yesterday but we had time for a nice walk from Failford to Stair.
The route description from the link above doesn't show the out and back to Stair but its pretty obvious at the far end of the Failford trail, it takes about 30minutes to reach Stair giving a round trip walk of 2 hours not counting the lunch stop at Stair Inn.
Shot a short video along the way, I couldn't resist the water at the wier so had to shoot a bit more to get enough clips, there was some nice light so took a few stills to add in as well.

Today Graham and I managed out for a short MTB run between the morning showers and the PM rain, it only amounted to 1.5hours so PM I went for a stoll around Goldenberry hill just as the rain was setting in.
There was only a light wind so it was very pleasant among the trees with the brolly and wellies.
Some spring photos on Goldenberry here.

Friday, January 05, 2007


Hidden falls at Fairlie

Anne was off to Glasgow this morning so naturally I got out and about, up Biglees Quarry on the MTB and across to the falls for a bit of a play on the short steep slopes, shooting a bit of video along the way.
I'd intended to go up to Kelburn but a large shower was approaching so headed home for some lunch and then, after the shower had passed, took a walk up behind Fairlie along the singletrack to the hidden waterfall.
Its only 20metres from the track but unless you go looking you'd never know it was there.
It has a rock spread that breaks the water as it falls, its quite pretty when there's a good flow like today.

Managed a little jog down the beach as well just as the sun was going down, there was a glorious sunset, but of course I didn't have the camera with me to record it, so its just a fading memory now.

View route description here.

Thursday, January 04, 2007

1st MTB 2007

Goldenberry Hill View

It been windy and wet since the beginning of the new year so Anne and I haven't been far.
My bike was in need of some maintenance, chain, chain ring, gears, all the stuff that gets destroyed in the mud.
Finished the repairs yesterday and went out for my first run of the new year today as Anne was off shopping.
It was very breezy and I was having difficulty just going straight, was forced to walk some easy bits just because I couldn't stay out of the heather on the moor.
Down through the trees on a secret trail was a relief to get out of the wind, then did a loop over Goldenberry, nice views, and along the beach home for lunch.

PM had a walk with Anne on Fairlie moor and last gasp a little wind assisted jog along the beach, nice day in spite of the wind.
Took a little video or some photos here similar route description here.

Monday, January 01, 2007

Brand new year same old weather

Portencross castle sunset

Anne and I brought in the new year at a ceilidh in West Kilbride public hall, organised by a friend of ours along the road.
I'm pleased to say it went really well, he got 40 folk over the break even point and the profit will go to the hall fund, over £400... well done John!

Hogmanay weather was rubbish, Edinburgh and Glasgow Hogmanay street parties were called off due to the terrible weather, shame.
The only exercise I managed was a jog along the beach in the one dry hour of the day about 3pm.
The first day of 2007 was almost as bad, Anne and I went for a walk in Fairlie, but got rather muddy and wet, then we called in on my cycling pal Tom before heading back for some late lunch.
PM I went up a secret trail for a couple of hours to remove debris brought down by last nights high winds, there's still one larger fallen tree that will need the big saw, a little outing for another time soon.

Well, thats the silly season over, time to get back to normal and loose the extra festive pounds around the waist, this calls for discipline and hard work, or in my case, more fun on the bike!
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