A view of Arran from Bute and a photo left over from the Bute trip that was too good to miss out.
The post today however takes place in the hills above Dumbarton where a cracking walk of a few hours can be had along the Lang Craigs Escarpment, (ancient lavas flows) then up the gentle slopes of Doughnot Hill to return down the beautiful Overtoun Glen and House back to the car. Alex and Alan had never been along the Lang Craigs escarpment before, despite much urging from me, but they finally succumbed and agreed to join me. Mainly because Doughnot Hill had a new trig for Alex although Alan seems more open to going anywhere interesting.
Good and interesting link to the Clyde Plateau Lavas below. There are over 60 volcanic plugs between Dumbarton and the Scottish Riviera sunshine coast at Dunbar. Many of them were used as hill forts by the most powerful tribe in the area, the Damnonii, who ruled this district and much of the central belt when the Romans came and the remains of their defensive walls are easily seen in this great area for geologists and interested visitors. Many of them are photographed here which includes much more info than Dumbarton Castle itself. I love the title Gates of Sodom!
This is a lovely area as is Scotland as a whole but it is in danger of being swamped by a far greater threat than Rhododendrons. There is a small reservoir and dam just below this hill and it seems to have become a magnet for the outdoor drink and drug crowd. I don't actually mind that as it means they will die much faster than healthy people:o) What I cant understand is why, if they carry all their drink and rubbish up full and heavy... they cant carry it back down again when its five times lighter and empty. Many of my friends in the various clubs I've been in over the years liked a drink and a party but they still tidied up after them and carried any rubbish back to bins or house.
From what I've read and the pictures I've seen recently Glen Etive has gone the same way every summer and the Loch Lomond park authority is talking about strict new regulations which is yet another case of the minority spoiling it for the rest of us as they will simply move the problem elsewhere. Meanwhile, over at the Hamilton Mausoleum the massive sleeping lions that generations of children enjoyed getting their photographs taken beside are now locked up behind high railings after vandalism to the monument. During the last prolonged summer heatwave we had a few years ago most of the grasslands surrounding Glasgow were set on fire deliberately which at least burned the mountains of fast food takeaway rubbish left scattered in the grass as well as all the wildlife too slow to escape the inferno. I, the fire brigade, the landowners, and most nature lovers I,d imagine, were very relieved when it started raining again after almost a month of dry weather.Truth is, a warm dry summer is not in the the United Kingdom's best interests. We need all the rainy days we can get to deter certain groups going into the outdoors who seem to treat nature as a toilet or a rock festival where someone else will clear up the mess left behind. No wonder a sizable percentage of the planet's wildlife is facing extinction in around 50 years time, kept alive only in zoos. The dirtiest, litter dropping nation in Europe? Shithole Britain. What's the answer? When will the culprits stop? When it's knee deep? Waist deep? Over their heads and they have to toss it upwards to get rid of it? When we are all swimming through lakes of human waste to reach the hills?
And the main summer season hasn't even started yet.
Dumbuck arete from an unusual angle.
Video this week is one I promised to post a couple of weeks ago about anti- social behaviour. I like this band and it's a great classic song from the 1990s that's had almost 40 million hits but as soon as I watched this one on Top of the Pops years ago I thought "some nutter is going to copy this for real" and sure enough a few weeks later there was a spate of similar incidents with gangs running over a parked line of cars for fun. Not so funny if you had a repair bill to pay afterwards. I also remember a certain well known gang doing this with swords and knives in a busy city centre street at lunchtime with shoppers scattering for cover but they paid the price and got long jail sentences. Hope it was worth it. Not picking on this band as such as I like their music and the lyrics are good but this video did seem to raise the bar on extreme behaviour and many other "Rebel bands" hold similar anti establishment, F*** you attitudes. I know it's all part of the game with rock bands since the 1950s but I wonder if they would feel the same way if someone smashed their property up and had a bigger more threatening approach than they did and raised the bar even higher as has happened frequently with gangster rappers getting shot.Is this the world they want for their own children? Does that encourage ordinary people in the street to follow suit? There are enough nutters in society already without media endorsement and I seem to have encountered more than my fair share of them over the years. I,m not suggesting a Cliff Richard approach as I like edgy subversive music myself but what happened to being decent and reasonably polite in real life and more importantly, being creatively subversive rather than in your face aggression all the time?