The Road goes ever on and on; Down from the door where it began;
Now far ahead the Road has gone; And I must follow, if I can;
Pursuing it with eager feet; Until it joins some larger way;
Where many paths and errands met; And whither then? I cannot say.

[JRR Tolkien, Lord of the Rings]

Monday 10 November 2014

GT Day 14: Loch Skeen

Sunday 9 November 2014

The weather this morning wasn’t such as to make us leap out of bed and seize the day. On the contrary, we got off to a very slow start and it was approaching 11am by the time we drove up towards Eric’s Stane, just north of Moffat. Plan A had been a walk from there, but before we even got to our parking area we were in the cloud.

It struck me that, after all the rain of the last few days, it would probably be a better day to visit a waterfall than to be on a cloud-covered hill, so Plan B was quickly formulated and we hotfooted it to Grey Mare’s Tail, to the east of Moffat (a feature of which I was only aware thanks to a passing mention in an email from TVPS t’other day).

The fall certainly was a spectacle worth seeing (sorry, no photo due to poor signal), but even more attractive was Loch Skeen, which was like a millpond when we reached it.

Its shore provided us with a very pleasing lunch spot, and it was as we lunched that the slightest hint of a bright orb appeared behind a thinning of the cloud. Within ten minutes we could see all of the tops surrounding us, including the Corbett, White Coomb.

I was sorely tempted to grab the opportunity and go up it, but Mick had a date with a motorway and was unconvinced that my speed versus the hours of daylight remaining were such that it would be sensible for me to take the upwards diversion. I, therefore, did the good wifely thing and returned back to the car park to wave him off on his way back south.

With a reasonable bit of daylight remaining, rather than spending the rest of the day absorbed in my book, off I went to explore the line of an old track (not marked on the map) I had seen a little way up the other side of the valley. It took me to Dobb’s Linn, which the information signs at Grey Mare’s Tail car park tell me is an important geological site, but I didn’t get to explore it as the burn was running high enough that I didn’t want to risk trying to cross it without my walking poles (this being just an little afternoon stroll, I hadn’t got anything with me except my phone). I noticed that the cloud was back down by the time I made my way back down the valley and with excellent timing, I had just closed Colin’s door behind me when it started to rain.

Combined, the two pleasant little outings amounted to 5.3 miles with 1500’ of ascent.

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