.............not all those that wander are lost..............

Monday, 8 April 2013

A slow start......

Four days before the cut-off date of 31st March I was offered a place on the TGO Challenge for this year. I accepted and then began to panic......A combination of back-to-back visitors, when we tend to eat lunch out and then have a big meal in the evening, and the continuing cold weather, which increases my appetite, has led to me being rather heavier than I would rather be and although I am ski-fit it doesn't necessarily mean I'm walking fit......

So this morning being the first day home I opened the curtains and watched a blizzard adding more and more whiteness to the garden. I decided to wait till after lunch before going out. John had to go to Ballater to collect a parcel so I took a lift from him and decided to walk along the Deeside Way and get the bus home.

{The start point of the old railway line in Station Square}

{Following the original platform}

At this point a notice board telling me that the Cambus O'May Circular Walk would take me 4 hours attracted my attention. So I changed tack and walked over the main bridge across the Dee and climbed up into the Pannanich Woods to follow the path to Cambus. This would take me to the White Bridge at Cambus where I could then return to Ballater on the old railway line. The mud and snow on the path were deep in places but not too slippery so I plodded on happily. I had packed my Microspikes but decided they weren't needed.

Eventually the forest track flattened out and I passed the picnic tables and story-boards for the Canadian logging camp that was there during the Second World War. I haven't researched this but I know it's quite an interesting bit of local history. At one time there was a move to rebuild one of the cabins and make a visitor's centre but that doesn't appear to have happened.

{Picnic tables on the site of the Canadian Lumberjack camp}

{A story board about the Newfoundland lumberjacks of 1941}

There was a short spell on the road before turning into the woods closer to the River. A good deal of work has taken place to make a good path for walking, cycling or riding a horse along with smart new fences and gates. And signs. There are always signs.

{The new gates}

There were still patches of deep slush but in general the fairly open birch covered land on either side of the path would probably be a good place to find a wild camping spot. I can't help but look out for camping sites....

{A snowman left to enjoy the peace and quiet}

{Through the trees towards the River}

 A bit more history - this time about Torphantrick - once a thriving village. Now there are just a few stone walls left to see.

{Holding up the story board.....}

At last the White Bridge is crossed and I can head back to Ballater. Now the sunshine has gone and there is horizontal wet sleet in my face......

{The White Bridge at Cambus O'May}

The old railway line heads straight back to Ballater. It's a great cycle run which I used to do regularly with groups of children.

{The new cheese factory...}

 It passes both new and old buildings. There were two fishermen on the river bank and the light was beginning to go as some heavy clouds rolled in with the sleet.

{The old Kirk at Tullich}

I just made it with 5 minutes to spare for the bus back to Crathie.

Viewranger tells me I walked 13 kilometres in just under 3 hours. My legs tell me I'm not as fit as I need to be.

There will be more walking tomorrow...............


Louise said...

My legs are making very similar mutterings. Somehow, I'm glad I'm not floundering around in the borders...

Alan Sloman said...

Good girl!
Admirable stuff, in that weather.

Alan R said...

Pleased for you Laura. Lots of walking posts pending over the next couple of weeks then.

Louise:- No floundering, honest. Cold though with some long spells of ankle to knee deep white stuff.

Louise said...

I am sorry to have missed it Alan, but not! I hate struggling through 'Ankle Shaping' snow. Hope you're all have a fab time!