Saturday, 23 July 2011

Hunters Gate Walk

This is Why I Live Here

The Easier Route
On Thursday Mrs Gill had arranged to meet Jenny Pike at the Buccleuch Centre for lunch. As the garden was in reasonable order I was free to a little indulgence. So after a light lunch of soup and a roll I packed my rucksack and headed for Hunters Gate. The shortest route would be to go straight up the hill at the rear of the house but as this is rather strenuous and on the advice of Mrs Gill I opted for the longer but easier route.
Approaching Meikleholm Hill

The Town Looked Splendid
I headed along Holmwood Drive through Meikleholm Side and up Jimmy's Brae. I passed through the gate leading on to the hill and took the track to my left. Looking back  the town looked splendid tucked away in the valley. The hills are a canvas of various shades of green at the moment especially with all the rain we have been having lately.

A splendid town

a Commanding Voice
Peter And Dogs
I hadn't gone very far when I could hear a distant commanding voice, it turned out to be Peter Harkness out training two of his Labrador pups which he uses during the shooting season.

                                                          Something Majestic and surreal
I continued on along the track with the Becks farm down to my left. As I rounded the shoulder of the hill the wind turbines that were erected above Carresgill came into view, but they were quite idle probably due to the lack of wind. I think there is something quite majestic and surreal about these giants on the landscape but they are not every ones cup of tea. Although I don't mind them personally I do wonder how economically viable they are.

Hunters Gate
Shortly Hunters Gate appeared, why it is called that I have no idea, so if any of my few blog followers have that information please enlighten me. This is where Meikleholm hill meets Timpen offering some spectacular views towards Milnholm and Potholm Farms.
Hunters Gate

A Nice Cup of Coffee
I spent a while putting the new camera through it's paces before crossing over the style and settling down behind the wall to enjoy a nice cup of coffee and a humus roll that I had saved from lunch time.  I brought the camera manual with me, I'm a great believer in R F I (work that one out) and experimented for a while using different settings on the camera.

Towards Milnholm & Potholm

A Familiar Voice
After a while I heard Peters familiar voice, and soon he came into view striding towards Timpen with one of his Labrador pups. After about 10 minutes Peter appeared back minus dog which I didn't give much thought. He waved and asked if I was enjoying my coffee and was quickly out of sight.  About 5 minutes the dog came bounding down the hill obviously to Peters command. I have often seen Peter in the field at the rear of my house working with his dogs and it is a sight worth watching. A kinder man to his dogs you will find hard to meet.

A Familiar Voice

Wild Orchids
I packed up and crossed back over the style and head downhill towards my left, stopping off to take some photos of wild Orchids. I see they were mentioned in Little Jottings this week, so if  the columnist and reader happen upon this blog please tell me what variety it is.
What variety of Orchid?

A Lesser Spotted Daewoo
Lesser Spotted Daewoo
 Continuing on down the hill I came onto the road that was made to extract the wood off the hillside and headed towards where it meets the B709 Westerkirk road and crossed over taking the path that runs parallel with the road and the river Esk towards the town. This is quite a delightful quiet unspoilt shaded walk or so I thought until I came upon a lesser spotted Daewoo. This television had obviously been thrown over the wall from the road above. What I really cant understand about fly tipping is, if they can make the effort to load the stuff into their vehicle and drive out to some isolated spot and dump their rubbish, why cant they just drive to the tip? I did some more experimenting with the camera. it seemed to cope very well in the shaded areas. Finally coming out at the Duchess Bridge I was on the home straight.

The conclusion of the walk was! I learned a great deal more about my new camera and once again I was reminded why it is I choose to stay here. I would also appreciate some comments on my content and photos please, no matter how critical, as it would help to improve as a blogger and photographer


  1. Possibly a northern marsh orchid

  2. thank you for that Mr Tootlepedal

  3. I've photographed a few similar orchids this year Sandy.One of our amateur botanists thinks they're Heath Spotted Orchids -Dactylorhiza maculata.

    Fly tipping's a scourge these days.What gets me are the outdoor type camping out in the Galloway Hills and leaving their drinks cans in the embers of their camp fires.