Tuesday, 26 January 2016

Burns Supper at BBC Scotland ,Glasgow. January 25th. 2016

Looking towards the top table.
Last night Anne and I were very privileged to be invited to the HQ of BBC Scotland Scotland for a traditional Burns supper which was being broadcasted live on radio Scotland.4500 people applied for tickets and only 50 lucky people were successsful.It was chaired by Bryan Burnett along with Jamie MacDougall (singing) Brian Taylor (BBC political editor) who did the Immortal memory, Jonathon Watson recited the most wonderful Tam O'Shanter, Des Clarke did a toast to the lassies and Martha McBrier replied. Once we were all seated the broadcast began whilst we were served a full traditional meal with loads of wine and a wee dram to toast the haggis. It was a very well presented evening with lots of laughter particularly at the tables as I think there ballot for tickets was done by selecting a particular age group mainly 50 to 70 year olds . Excellent evening and the icing on the cake was the TV license fee paid for it.

PS . Some regular followers of the blog may be wondering why there are no reports of walks recently,this is due to the mainly to our recent weather if it is not raining it is blowing a gale and even today the Deerstalker had a walk arranged for the Kilmarnock area which she rightly cancelled as there are storm warning being issued for the area. Hopefully it will improve once we move into February.

Wednesday, 20 January 2016

Kilmarnock OIR. Troon/Prestwick circular. January 2016

Troon shore after Storm Frank

Morning coffee sitting on old tree stumps.

We walked under the flightpath at Prestwick.

Todays group.
Yesterday Tuesday January 19th Kilmarnock OIR met at the ballast bank in Troon on a reasonably mild dry morning to do a 7 mile walk towards Prestwick and return on the shore.Unfortunately our leader for the day was unable to attend so 2 or 3 of us who have walked this area many times before worked out a route suitable for the walkers and off we went at a fair old pace as this is the group that does not hang about.Troon shore is starting to recover from tons of driftwood that was thrown up during Storm Frank but thanks to the sterling ongoing work being carried out by the local authority it will not be long before it is ready to receive an influx of visitors in a couple of months time.Walking up past millionaires row we went round the edge of Fullarton woods before joining the cycle track at Royal Troon golf course which is the home this year of the world famous "Open". Arriving at the caravan site beside the airport we took the path down onto the shore to have our lunch stop admiring the winter colours of the sky reflecting on a very calm sea. The last part of our day was a very pleasant shore trek back to the start to end another excellent winters day out with this very fit group.

Sunday, 17 January 2016

Cunninghame ramblers. Irvine to Kilmarnock linear. January 2016

Stop to let everyone catch up.

Crossing a bridge/ice rink.

Excellent surfaces on the old railway line.

Todays group.
Yesterday Saturday January 17 Cunninghame ramblers met on a cold frosty morning to walk 7 miles to Kilmarnock on the old railway line before taking the bus back to Irvine.20 of us set off and it was nice to have 2 local visitors with us who may become members in the near future.The first part of our walk took us past the Hallmark Hotel which over the years has changed its name several times just to keep us all confused. Once on the railway line great care had to be taken as it was extremely icy in places making for one or two slips and slides but fortunately nothing too serious. Morning coffee was taken on a stretch of line known locally as coachmans brae near to Dreghorn in sight of our local retired school teachers place of employment.As we passed the villages of Springside and Knockentiber lots of history was discussed and little stories of a bygone year were swapped. On reaching Kilmarnock 3 of us left the group to get their bus to Irvine whilst we carried on into the town bypassing Wetherspoons to the main bus station to make our way home after a most enjoyable winters walk completed before the snow came on turning everywhere lovely and crispy white.

Thursday, 14 January 2016

Kilmarnock OIR Darvel circular on the Lang Cairn walk. January 2016

Tea break in the rain.
 On Tueday January 12th Kilmarnock OIR met on a dreich wet morning to do the Lang Cairn walk to Loudoun Hill returning on the old railway line. The forecast as usual said it would be dry in the Darvel area with only a slight chance of a shower. Well how wrong could they be,the rain was constant for the first 3 hours of the 8 mile walk with a little bit of relief early afternoon.Undeterred off we went into the gloom and up the hills to the lang cairn before lunching at the Wallace monument at Loudoun Hill. The leader quite rightly suggested that we miss out the climb up to the top of the hill as it has an extremely steep descent and would be too dangerous today. In the afternoon we trudged along a very wet muddy disused railway line back top the start.I enjoyed the company of this hardy group of ramblers they just take weather and mud in their stride and get on with it. Lets hope for better conditions next week at Troon.

PS. Lack of photos due to the conditions.

Thursday, 7 January 2016

Kilmarnock OIR. Barskimming estate by Mauchline. January 2016

Happy new year to everyone who reads the blog. This posting is rather unusual as there are no photographs as I was requested by the estate management that the family do not wish pictures of their estate on the internet and as a member of Kilmarnock OIR their wishes have to be respected.

On Tuesday January 5th 17 members met at Barskimming House to be greeted by a senior member of the staff accompanied by his wife ,2 children and 4 dogs to be shown around this beautiful estate. On a cloudy cool morning after all the introductions had been made we set off along one of the many tracks through woodlands and open meadows.Our guide was very helpful explaining the history and the ongoing maintenance that has to be carried out every year to keep the estate accessible for all the equestrian events held there annually.Our walk was about 7 miles and we never once left the boundary of the estate which stretches far and wide into the Ayrshire countryside. An excellent informative walk and a vote of thanks was given at the Fairburn Hotel where we all enjoyed a wee refreshment or a coffee.

Friday, 1 January 2016

New Year 2016

Happy New Year to all our blog readers in cyberspace.

From Anne and Gordon Phillips.