7th October 2012.
For weeks Bob had been taunting me with his new hillwalking friend that he`d bumped into whilst walking on the Campsies one day. “You are history” and ” Ron is much better company than you,he never moans” were two of the milder epithets lobbed in my direction 🙂 At long last I was eventually invited to join them on a jaunt to Stronend near Fintry. I was told to arrive at the car park at 9.30am and await the arrival there of a flashy new BMW which would be transporting my erstwhile climbing and walking partner of the last thirty years.What a hussy 🙂
After suffering the intoductions…”This is my new friend Ron ” etc; we headed off up the road through the grounds of Culcreuch Castle and made our way up to the crags which surround the plateau.
I maintained a dutiful distance behind as per Bobs instructions as you can see from the above pic 🙂
This gave me time to take a few pics as in this one looking back down on Fintry.
My last visit here was on December 30th 2003 with Gavin and Bob on a lovely day but one which was bitterly cold preventing us from hanging around the summit for long so I was looking forward to sitting around to soak up the views this time around.
Bob on the last band of crags up to the plateau.
Eventually I was waved forward to join them at the summit.Given it`s diminutive stature it`s an outstanding viewpoint with a 270 degree panorama of the Southern Highlands to enjoy.
Even Bob had mellowed and was asking if I fancied going out with them again the following week.I was even going to be allowed to travel in the rear seat of the flashy new BMW it seems 🙂 We wandered around the edge of the escarpment towards the Spout of Ballochleam following the odd sheeptrack.Pic from Bob of myself en route….
While Bob was doing his usual scarpering around for the best photo opportunites I got the opportunity to have a chat with Ron and it turned out he wasn`t the partnership breaking floozy I had imagined.He was actually quite a nice guy 🙂
He had just retired the previous year having spent his working life troubleshooting power stations around the world and had just started taking walks locally as he lives under the Campsies.We were talking away about this and that and got onto the subject of guitars.He told me that he had just sold a Les Paul on Ebay.Now I`m sure that Ron wouldn`t mind me saying that he looked “normal” so it came as a bit of a shock to me when he told me,after a gentle interrogation,that he had played a lot in the seventies in a band and had supported The Who amongst others ! My second rock icon in a fortnight 🙂
Not fancying the boggy return over the Shelloch Burn we retraced our steps back along the edge for the different views.
The quieter side of Ben Lomond.
Bob has a stern word with Ron for spending too much time chatting with me 🙂
A few more from the return journey…..
Cracking wee hill but I`m sorry to say that some tosser has attacked the trig pillar and stolen the flush bracket.