Dumfries and the south west coast

Summer heatwave, no holiday plans, late booking at a cottage few miles west of my home town Dumfries.  A week of cycling and walking.

IMG_0924 southerness ian lighthouse

IMG_0909 - southerness


IMG_0938 southwick church
Southwick Church – a rest in the shade
IMG_0942 - from coast to beeswing
back road to Beeswing

Dumfries and Galloway Council doing a major re-surface of what seemed like all back roads west of Dumfries.  To be fair, roads quiet and motorists not too bad.

IMG_0944 - lots of these

Highlight cycling wise was a memorable circuit of the Galloway Forest Park

The Big Country Ride (Strava)

Started from Clatteringshaws Visitor Centre (forgettable) on a misty morning.  Only snag was a puncture – first on the Trek Mountain Bike – coming away from Glentrool on route to Newton Stewart.  Road had just been relaid with sharp shards of stone, (alliteration not intended!).

IMG_0961 - puncture near glentrool visitor centre
amateur stuff – had an inner tube for a touring bike, blew in an instant

So started to push the bicycle the 8 miles or so towards Newton Stewart.  Busy road.  Kind gentleman with two dogs going in opposite direction stopped to take me to Newton Stewart and a cycle shop.  From Yorkshire originally, let’s just say he had no time for ‘English settlers’ in Scotland.  I was in no position to be judging his views – not many people would have gone out their road to that extent – saved me a long and uncomfortable journey.  Lunch and re-charge in Newton Stewart at the Beltie Cafe / Visitor Centre and onwards up over Queen’s View.

IMG_0967 - old edinburgh road
Old Edinburgh Road in the heat of the day was a slog
IMG_0973 - down from big climb near clatteringshaws
this was no pushover up and over the forest roads

Our cottage was basic but had everything you needed.  Nice people too which always makes a difference.

IMG_0949 - pussy at cargen cottage
friendly pussy at Cargen Cottage

Other highlights of the week in Dumfries and Galloway – a first game of golf for many a year at New Galloway GC.  Mixed shall we say.  Fantastic views from a parched course.

IMG_0956 - ian and liz new galloway GC BEST

And getting an electric shock trying to get out of a field with this unsettled cow getting very unsettled …..

P1040112 - bull

Also tried a spot of coarse fishing at a spot from my youth, where I also recall catching nothing ….!

IMG_1004 - ian fishing lochrutton
rain at Lochrutton Loch, Lochfoot, near Dumfries

and some nice forest walks, this one near Kircudbright after accidentally bumping into Princess Anne opening a new gallery and arts venue.

IMG_0985 - liz kirkcudbright walk

Week ended with an 84 mile cycle home from Dumfries to Edinburgh via the Dalveen Pass route.  Had a steady tail wind making it easier

Dumfries (Lochfoot) to Edinburgh (Strava) 

IMG_1033 - dalveen pass smaller
Dalveen Pass

IMG_1025 - wild flowers dalveen pass

Stopped at favourite cafe in Carnwath on return – Apple Pie Bakery for a coffee, pancake or two … and a read at ‘The Sun’.  Brexit brought to life in wonderful simplicity!

IMG_1037 - brexit JRM versus alastair campbell


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