Sunday, 27 January 2013
A good history of the house, modern dodgy dealings surrounding it, and the Clan Gregor connected to it is contained in here.http://www.glendiscovery.com/glengyle-house. Click on Glengyle House htm, to see it.
The photograph above is the route we took following a faint path around the back of the buildings starting near the old graveyard. By the look of it this mountain does not get many ascents. I know from previous outings with Alex on the hills surrounding Loch Katrine that these hills give tough walking and this one was no exception.
The snow was soft and slippery underfoot and the wind chill factor was below minus twenty. As soon as you removed a glove to take a photograph your hands grew numb and even with double insulated gloves and full face balaclavas on it was unpleasant. Hands had to be brought back to life occasionally by removing gloves and placing them under clothing next to bare warm skin to keep the blood circulating round the fingers.
Views northwards were impressive though.
A great day out but easily the coldest day on the hills I've had for several years. Even the walk back to the car along the low level water board road with a strong headwind blowing off the loch was full face balaclava time with jacket hood up and freezing, watering eyeballs.
Video is Catherine Destivelle in a classic from Mali. Its nine minutes long but a real gem with local cultural interest throughout as she solos a vertical cliff with a trumpet playing witch doctor blasting jazz at her as she hangs off overhangs.
I remember seeing this many years ago as she's a real legend in climbing circles. In her early 50s now. Also the first women to solo the north face of the Eiger in winter taking 15 hours. Makes our day out seem rather tame :0)
Wednesday, 23 January 2013
Never seen it look so beautiful. Mind you I always think it looks stunning :)
Near the top of Scald Law. Great views over the whole range,then across to the Moorfoots, the Broughton heights and the Lomonds. As soon as nearby Edinburgh fades from sight here it feels really remote and isolated, especially in winter.
I'm just happy it wasn't me :)
Todays video. Two today highlighting the contrasting qualities of the Dark Angel of Atlanta herself, Chan Marshall. This girl can nail a whole range of different styles from Indie to rock to grunge to jazz to blues to melancholy southern gothic.
I've been a big fan of hers for years and her back catalogue has introduced me to so many different artists I would never have found myself.
As soon as I watched two of her videos I knew I'd crossed a great frontier in music and she has never let me down yet. The first is pure southern gothic.. the second some may find extreme but it has a haunting intensity. Her songs have an edge and a dark ambiguity I find compelling as I'm not too keen on middle of the road music or bland, overfamiliar subject matter in songs usually.
These are certainly not that.
'Forgiveness? I pray the ground trembles under the impact of their falling bodies'... New York city female multiple abuse victim.
Saturday, 19 January 2013
Do people know when they live through a golden age or when it comes to an end?
The good news for future generations is that they will probably not miss it when its gone as they will have an entire virtual graphene bendy friendly kaleidoscopic world to live in instead. I wonder what Kim Kardashian is having for breakfast today? I love bendy twitter. Touring my local computer retailer I'm comforted to see its the really important things that matter most on modern Windows Eight displays. As a great modern philosopher once said...Be careful what you wish for cos you just might get it.(Pussycat Dolls I think it were?)
Me? I'm unchangeably old fashioned in my tastes so I still prefer the high street version of nature in the raw for now. Like watching a long line of dominos falling isn't it Mary? Ah well, you tried your best. Maybe we could turn them all into cut rate licenced sex,drug and party zones instead. That might work. One way to pull money from punters pockets even during a recession. I cant see the supermarkets putting that on the shelf's just yet but you never know.
Or maybe I'll raise a whole new society of Sexton beetles when my corpse topples over on a remote hillside someday. As I've discovered there's a hidden world of wonder in corpses and crap if you go looking for it. Now that's a happy thought to end with. Kim, eat your heart out! Lets hear it for international burying beetles. A real growth industry.
Todays video is a cracking live action extravaganza of Starlings going through their nightly winter display. Once a common sight in towns and cities throughout Britain. I used to watch these displays at the bottom of my local hill growing up but didn't see as fine an example as this.
Wednesday, 9 January 2013
Biggar, seen above is one of my favourite small towns. There's a lot more to it than you think with lovely walks and a collection of moderately priced museums. This is the old bridge on the west side of town. The type of urban landscape rural English villages have in abundance but Its as scare as chocolate fireguards up in these parts. No village pond but you could sneak Biggar into Kent, the Cotswolds or Dorset and it wouldn't look out of place.
It was this that attracted me as I hadn't cycled the minor yellow roads to the north of Biggar for over ten years but I remembered them as being special and unique .
OS Map 72. Upper Clyde Valley. Just follow the yellow brick road.
As you can see here its a network of quiet highways that takes you into some superb cycling country with huge skies and flat plains one minute, mountains the next.
It was a warm lazy hazy day in October. Frost in the mornings high up but hot sunny afternoons in the valleys.
It felt like a lush fertile garden of Eden and there have been precious few outings I 've had those feelings this year with all the rain and chilly conditions summer long.
A great year for slugs and snails...not so terrific for everything else.
A blast of modern blues now by a young man with an old soul. Cracking band playing up a storm.
Wednesday, 2 January 2013
The well made track above was the only one we managed to find and we were only on it for a short distance
Dogs have been lost in this area falling down fissures and there were plenty scattered around the vicinity. Deep pits that is not dogs.
It was slimy, tussock filled slopes pouring with mud and water but I eventually made my way to the bottom then caught up the others near the road.
This was the size of a couple of thumbnails.
Everyone agreed it had been a great but tough day out. We enjoyed it once back in the house, dry and warm after a hot shower. No rain but soaking wet from the knees down most of the time as soon as we left the car. It was this trip that made me invest in decent winter boots.