Wester Ross

The last five days Cliff and I have been assessing/supervising an excellent Gold DofE Group from Trinity Academy for The City of Edinburgh Council.

After an acclimatisation night at the Big Sand campsite the group’s route travelled through some very rugged, remote and scenic country between Gairloch and Killilan over four days with three nights wild camping.

Sunset on Beinn Dearg from Beinn a’Chearcaill.

The weather was generally pretty kind with sunshine and showers until today when the group finished in steady rain. The hills are pretty wet and walking off tracks is currently quite boggy. Localised heavy rain is affecting river crossings e.g. the stepping stones on the way to Coire Mhic Fearchair were impassible on Tuesday evening.

The group did a great job and coped with the conditions well. I’ll post some more photos from the trip on the ClimbNow Facebook page.

The Lammermuirs

The last three days I’ve been working for The City of Edinburgh Council supervising a Silver DofE Qualifying Expedition for a group from Trinity Academy. Their route traversed the Lammermuirs from Lauder on the west to near Stenton on the northern edge with a high point of Twin Law. It took in some beautiful moorland and two secluded wild camps.

Trig point and standing stone on Dabshead Hill.

The weather was a mix of sunshine and heavy showers and the group dealt with the conditions well.

East Lothian

The last three days I’ve been supervising a Silver DofE Qualifying Expedition for The City of Edinburgh Council for a group from Trinity Academy. The group had specifically wanted a flatish route, so had planned their expedition in the coastal region of East Lothian. This still allowed for some good walking, wild camping and some possibly more tricky navigation than in a hillier area.

The group walking along an East Lothian beach in the rain.

Tuesday was dry, Wednesday was definitely wet and windy during the day with plenty of rain until the evening and the group finished in the dry on Thursday.

Bangholm and the Tweed Hills

I’ve been doing a second week working for The City of Edinburgh Council delivering Silver DofE Training for a different group from Trinity Academy. On Monday and Tuesday we were based out of Bangholm Outdoor Centre and the last three days we’ve been out in the Tweed Hills for a practice expedition.

The view from Craig Head up Glensax. This makes a great horseshoe walk.

We started from Peebles and finished at Yair Bridge taking in Kirkhope Law, Brown Knowe and The Three Brethren along the way as well as two nights wild camping. This area is probably better known for it’s mountain biking, but offers some delightful walking on rolling moorland hills, through forestry and along river valleys. Some rain over Thursday night, but the hills are still pretty dry.

Bangholm and the Lammermuirs

This week I’ve been working for The City of Edinburgh Council delivering Silver DofE Training for a group from Trinity Academy. On Monday and Tuesday we were based out of Bangholm Outdoor Centre and the last three days we’ve been out in the Lammermuir Hills for a practice expedition.

Wild camping in the Lammermuirs.

The Lammermuirs are beautiful rolling moorland hills south east of Edinburgh and ideal for this sort of expedition.

Peebles and the Yarrow Valley

Last weekend Kris and I were out in the hills around Peebles and the Yarrow Valley supervising a Silver DofE group for the City of Edinburgh Council.

The summit of Minch Moor with mountain bikers up from Innerleithen and the Cheviot behind.

The summit of Minch Moor with mountain bikers up from Innerleithen and the Cheviot behind.

Starting at Peebles and finishing at the Bowhill Estate and taking in Minch Moor with two wild camps made for a very pleasant route. With just a little rain on Saturday and improving weather to a sunny Monday the hills were drying out well.

Pentlands

On Monday and Tuesday I was out in the Pentlands again with a Bronze DofE Group, who were traversing the Pentland Jills from Garvald to Easter Kinleith over two days with a wild camp.

The view from my tent door.

The view from my tent door.

The group were excellent and the weather was generally kind making for a pleasant two days in the hills.

Pentlands

The last two days I’ve been working for The City of Edinburgh Council supervising a Bronze DofE group who were traversing the Pentland Hills from Garvald to The Flotterstone.

My tent at a the wild camp near North Esk Reservoir.

My tent at a the wild camp near North Esk Reservoir.

The group did a great job and we were treated to some fine weather with only a light shower late this afternoon.

 

Pentlands and Lammermuirs

This week I’ve been running a Silver DofE training for The City of Edinburgh Council. This included navigation in the Pentland Hills on Tuesday and a three day practice expedition in the Lammermuirs.

The group approaching the Meikle Says Law trig point.

The group approaching the Meikle Says Law trig point.

The expedition took in Meikle Says Law and some delightful and, at times, tough walking terrain with a couple of beautiful camping spots. The group coped very well with some very mixed weather, which changed from heavy rain to bright sunshine on a fairly regular basis.

Pentlands and the Trossachs

I’ve spent quite a lot of the last two weeks supervising Duke of Edinburgh Award (DofE) qualifying expeditions for the City of Edinburgh Council Outdoor Education.

Evening light on Stuc a'Chroin

Evening light on Stuc a’Chroin

The expeditions included traverses through the Pentlands and the Trossachs. The weather was generally very kind, but a couple of the Silver Groups did particularly well to keep good spirits through a day and night of fairly incessant rain in the Trossachs.

Wild camping above Callander.

Wild camping above Callander.