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  1. #21
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    3 July

    10p shower hot water
    1 bus
    2.60 hostel
    1.58 map
    1.80 food
    80p fish and chips

    Went to church. Was told it was Perth Holiday Fortnight so only 40-50 in church. Was invited to a meal with the pastor and wife. Cold turkey, boiled and fried potatoes, carrots, cauliflower and cheese sauce, blackberry cake with whipped cream [feast for me!]

    [More bouncy bus notes]

    Left Perth 2:30 cool, cloudy, threatening but no rain. To Cupar yesterday [not sure what I meant?] 3-4 ruined castles/keeps on small back roads.
    Main route, no stops to Pitlochry
    Mr Thomas of the Perth church usually wears a kilt to church, speaks Gaelic. Saw 2 men on the way out of town wearing kilts.
    Heading over the Highland line for good. Unlike going to Comrie you can really see entering the hills. This is near the road to Grandtully.
    Pitlochry reminds me of Waterville [VT]. Same Alpine. Little traffic, quiet except for wind, busses and birds.

    Tomorrow cash traveller's checks, post a card and printed matter [I shipped home printed flyers and a couple small books in two packages. Only one made it. I know better how to pack things now.], freight the suitcase ahead [to Crianlarich].

    Went window shopping. Need matches!
    Bedroom and dining room look over Pitlochry and Creag an Fhithich.
    You'd better check food, last town in [is?] Kinnloch Rannoch til Loch Tay? Killin? and you may not get food after!!!

    Food, now have some spam, 2 boxes vitawheat, shortcake, need some small cans of food, matches.
    Meths [methylation spirits] white spirt, down main street by tourist[?] shop and flower shop.

    [My plan was to hike across Rannoch Moor to Glen Coe. Hence the following entry]
    Well, if you get out on the moor and starve, you've no one to blame but yourself. Watched cluds whip over Creag an Fhithich and across Pitlochry. I'm here. I still can't believe I intend to do this. The immensity of the area has finally hit me. Also it's desolateness.

    Card to McDuffie [my graduate professor]

    I can lay in bed (top bunk) and look out picture window and see from the Linn of Tummel, the north slope of Creag an Fhithich to Carn Beag.

    [I had cans to open and forgot a can opener] The hostel warden gave me a Swiss Army Knife from lost and found to use for a can opener. [I still have this].
    Caisteal Dubh before breakfast?
    Last edited by DCampbell16B; 1st March 23 at 12:36 PM.
    "There is no merit in being wet and/or cold and sartorial elegance take second place to common sense." Jock Scot

  2. #22
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    4 July

    Not much to speak of. Only 2 sections [stacks?] standing in the middle of a hay field.

    [News on the hostel telly:] 40 men hurt, brawl with Scots Guards who were taunted about kilt.

    [Shipped suitcase to] Henderson, General Merchant, Crianlarich.
    Pack weighs 76lbs [about 35kg]

    [I didn't have hiking boots. I had black Oxfords for any dress situation, kilted or not. For most walking and hiking (for now) I wore sneakers/trainers which were really running flats. A very thin sole and no heel.]

    ****[At this time I can only post by phone. I won't have access to accompanying photos for a few days. I will add them back to where they belong for the future, and also put them together for any who just might want to catch up.]**

    Left Pitlochry at noon. Garry Bridge, small waterfall other side I couldn't get to.
    Saw the Queen's View down Garry and Pass, Soldier's Leap. Ford at the River Garry (camp) look over Blair Castle. Hill which I took a picture of 5 min ago has a cloud over top now.
    Nice footpath by Killiecrankie. Evening camped on bank of River Garry above River Tilt. [Asked a local man and he pointed over there by the river and said no one would bother me.]
    ~2 to camp at a caravan site [not spending the money]
    Evening gorgeous. Warm, no breeze. People walking around, locals and visitors. Now understand why always talk about the weather. Everything is based on it. Work done when the weather is good, but if very good enjoy. Watched a game of bowls at Blair Atholl bowling club (lawn).
    Today did Pitlochry to Blair Castle.~8miles. Tomorrow maybe same. Depends on how long [I spend] in Blair Castle. May only walk from noon. Check map and estimate 10 miles. Not too tired but very sore. I keep moving to keep from freezing up. Rannoch Moor is looking very difficult at this stage and I am having second thoughts. Perhaps call Killin Hostel and warn them. Weather bad , could get stuck, then trouble. Estimate fastest time based today 16 miles/day. Will get better wt time but... Sun just going behind hill 9:08. Waded Garry to practice pipes.
    "There is no merit in being wet and/or cold and sartorial elegance take second place to common sense." Jock Scot

  3. #23
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    5 July

    1.20 Blair Castle
    1.17 lunch
    1.00 supper and breakfast: 2 apples, orange, 2 crisps, 4 rolls, choc ice
    85p tea
    26p tip
    [I'm not transferring all purchases. Some I can't read my writing, some don't make sense, and some are most uninteresting]

    More in papers about Scots Guards in fight.

    Broke camp and packed in about 45 min, taking it easy. Very light rain this morning. Weather reports not good. May try to catch ride after Struan.
    Castle is to mile from A9. Had I known, I'd have left pack in the village. 1 blister left foot, front on inside ball of foot. Poked with needle and wore extra pair of socks. A nuisance, but not really painful yet.

    YOU IDIOT! You sent $1000 travelers checks in .. sporran to Crianlarich!

    Blair Castle has impressive collection.

    Walked to past Struan, picked up on B847 by couple and daughter (father from Glasgow) and put right in Kinnloch Rannoch. [He was very quiet, wife and daughter quite outgoing. They said they were Brummies as if that explained it]

    Tea at Dunalister Hotel. Can sit here and watch Schihallion. Scones still warm. Even extra hot water to dilute dregs if pot.
    Michael Douglas [?]- two more experienced "walkers" talked a while with me, particularly social gospel. Probably see them on the morning bus, 7:45. Gave them each a roll. Gave me ⅓ banana. Weather threatening. Schihallion has disappeared and reappeared.

    Been a short shower, now over. Very impressive drive down by Beinn a'Cheallaich. No tree cover, very large.

    Campbell east end of Loch Rannoch. Fly only.
    Played pipes on the shore of Loch Rannoch.
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    Beautiful country, desolate, depressed, dangerous even, but beautiful.

    [I remember playing for a while on the shore. When I quit there was cheering from what must have been a hotel or gathering or something further up the north shore.

    That night was one of the two worst I remember. It was so pleasant I only set up the fly and climbed into the sleeping bag. A tourist family was walking by on the road above me, only saw me at the last moment and waved. I just grinned stupidly and waved back.

    I should have set up the tent. All night the midges were at my face, despite any repellent. And it was hot, but I couldn't get out of the bag without getting covered with the wee things.]
    Last edited by DCampbell16B; 4th March 23 at 06:23 PM.
    "There is no merit in being wet and/or cold and sartorial elegance take second place to common sense." Jock Scot

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  5. #24
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    Photo Catch-up

    Comrie looking west
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    South Shore Loch Rannoch
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    "There is no merit in being wet and/or cold and sartorial elegance take second place to common sense." Jock Scot

  6. #25
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    6 July

    Cleared up this morning. Slept badly last night. Also midges. Schiehallion easy to see, no clouds. Also mountains at end of Loch Rannoch. Have snow in the corries. Very beautiful. Washed face, neck, arms in Loch this morning. Temp of water must have been at least 2-3 degrees above freezing. Bus to Rannoch Station [post bus. First time I used it]. [The post bus carried mail, ans could carry a few passengers, delivered milk, sometimes even animals. Filled a need to the remote villages.] Packed and got to town 45min. Easier with fly.
    Killichonan the first Highland town. Houses strewn over the hillside, not on road. Driver says lots of people here still speak "Perthshire" gaelic. Water brown, just like the pictures. Sky clear, a little hazy. Can see Scheihallion from the forestry road.

    [The road dead ends at Rannoch Station. You can look north or south along the rail line. Or back behind you, but the bus is gone. Or head to the moor.]

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ID:	42420 Map of Rannoch Moor from the Ordnance Survey Map for Pitlochry and the Trossachs

    Rannoch Moor crossing, Loch Laidon. Foreground Leathad Mor, in rear Beinn a' Cheachain, to right Beinn Achaladair.

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ID:	42421 Loch Laidon and Ben Achalader

    Drank the brown water and gratefully. [I wouldn't do that now. Who knows what sheep lurk above?] What a gorgeous day. Breeze to keep the midges off. Sun sparkles on Loch Laidon.

    Back toward Loch Rannoch. I tried to shade the lens from the sun. [click for larger view]
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    Wet feet, peaty soil, some slips (3). Bad falls. [The trail was pretty dry, but when I stepped even 6 inches or so off the trail (when I got unbalanced by the 76 pound pack) I was immediately up to my knee in peat. Then I had to figure out how to get myself out. It usually meant dropping the pack, getting leg out, getting on the trail and hoisting the pack again.]

    Rested on a rock. Can still see Rannoch Station. Going is wet and rough. Plenty of Heather. No blossoms. Almost past path by going through gate [not sure what I meant]. Tigh na Cruaiche by 11am.

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ID:	42422 Schiehallion from the west

    [Looking over my shoulder I saw a dust cloud approaching me. If I had been in the States I would have called it a dust devil. It was a hiker. She was an Israeli who had finished her national service and was walking around Britain. She left me in the dust.]

    RAF fighter flew by at my eye level. Was past me before I even knew he was there.

    On the west side of Rannoch some Heather is starting to bloom.

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ID:	42423 Glen Etive to the left. Am Buachaille Etive Mor center, Glen Coe to the right.

    4:10 between lodge and Kingshouse Hotel. Air very heavy.
    5:05 Kingshouse Hotel. Must find out if you tip for a cup of tea. [I had the place to myself. Just as well as I must have been a sight after that.] Saw some of the Glen Coe Mountain Rescue team at hotel.
    Fate seems to have pointed me to Glen Coe village. If I don't make it I'll camp for the night and decide which way in the morning.
    Given lift to Glen Coe Hostel almost immediately (3rd car). Took me to the door. Got in. Met a couple of English chaps who had been over Aonach Eagach and were pleased they made it and horrified they went. Went to pub, drank Pepsi. Met the English chaps and the Israeli girl. Discussed cultural differences. Had shower.
    Last edited by DCampbell16B; 6th March 23 at 09:34 AM. Reason: Added photos
    "There is no merit in being wet and/or cold and sartorial elegance take second place to common sense." Jock Scot

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  8. #26
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    7 July

    Both blisters on each foot infected.

    Old stone buildings in Glencoe Village are mix of flat rock sections and large round rock sections, have gables. A number sod these in village with newer houses. Some stone left plain, some mortared in joints and painted. Generally tin roofs wired down in 2 or 3 places.
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    Drawing of gable end of Glen Coe type house


    [While I was at the Glencoe museum I was asked if I would take part in a survey about it. I did, but was unusual in that I knew quite a bit about the history of Glencoe already.]

    [As i was checking out of the hostel a wee 4yr old girl was stranding there. She had a mop of curly brown hair and the brightest, sparkling brown eyes I have ever seen. She looked up at me and chirped "I'm frae Glesga!" And I was smitten.]

    [That morning I saw quite a number of technical climbers carrying all manner of ropes getting ready to do some serious climbing.]

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    Glen Coe from village

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    Glen Coe

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    Aonach Eagach

    [I hiked up to Hidden Valley. The story is that the MacDonalds would hide cattle up there. If so, I don't know how they did it. The trail feom the glen really was mostly hidden, but included a 20ft section of almost vertical climbing. Once up there it was very open. I decided to try to climb up the west side and come down the next valley. The higher I got, the less that seemed like a good idea. I was getting near snow, the angle of climb was increasing and it was turning into loose stone. I went back the way I came.]

    At bakery, pastry apple filled, almond slices, covered with frosting. Tea cake 2 layers cake with ~ inch creme between, frosted on all sides but bottom. 1x2"

    Tea generally served with scones or biscuits (cookies). English guys my age don't [?unclear]. Must ask someone older. Went around the village and saw the massacre monument and WWI monument. Can see Ballachulish from here. Very hazy, some clouds but comfortable. Lots of trees on the lower slopes of the mountains.

    On map Rannoch crossing from Rannoch Station to hotel ~11miles.

    Doing more hostelling and bussing than planned. Pack to heavy to walk far with. I've been lucky hitchhiking, but I don't like to do it with large pack. So after I get to Lewis maybe I'll try it up there. Maybe not.

    [Got busses to Killin]

    Looked at burial ground Killin.
    Finlarig Castle ruins of castle, chapel, plus two graves. 4th Marquis of Broadalbin and wife. 17th century castle, vault, walls about 4ft thick.
    First disappointment. Killin very touristy. 2nd hostel very dull, could just be the night of the week. After Glencoe anything would be a letdown. Saw chaps from last night on reh bus to Crianlarich this morning. Note Crianlarich booked solid for women tomorrow night. Might be worth going back [not sure what I meant]. Sron a'Clachain [see your Scottish history, particular the Campbell/MacDonald issues] is right behind the hostel! Can't get to Aberfeldy from here. Also see Douglas castles before going back [I didn't. That is my mom's side of the family]. Finlarig must have been impressive in its day.

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    Drawing of Finlarig layout

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    Finlarig Castle

    Also play pipes [I did up on Sron a'Clachain].
    Few more people in the hostel [this evening], but all older and not interested in talking.

    Jim and Margaret of Killin are hostel wardens, know the Hendersons [wardens] of Glencoe hostel. He served in the Royal Navy in Lewis [?], India and on the Royal Yacht Britannia. All who serve [served] on her went down one rank, so that if they were kicked off there was no scandal about losing rank. All orders were given in whispers so as not to annoy the Royal Family.
    Last edited by DCampbell16B; 10th March 23 at 02:08 PM. Reason: Added photos
    "There is no merit in being wet and/or cold and sartorial elegance take second place to common sense." Jock Scot

  9. #27
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    8 July

    Footpath to Sron a'Clachain
    Falls of Lochay
    Dochart
    MacNab burial site 15 graves 9 chiefs in rectangular stone enclosure. One is effigy of a man lying down.
    Stone circle at Kinnell Estate, 6 stones in circle, 3 or 4 in center
    Lunch was ploughman's platter, roll, cheese, cucumbers, tomatoes, apples, tea. Craigard Hotel. Lots of fun, locals. [I noted I ate the tomatoes and cheese, mostly because I didn't care for them in general. I got over it.]
    Waitresses fun. Good looking women around here. [Hey, I was 23 and single. Give me a break.] Clachaig Hotel (across Dochart), at fruiterers [?].
    Looks like a ruin right below West of last new house. Also across road some kind of complex pen.
    Forgot to exchange money.
    Clumps of moss on moor (and on Rannoch) 8-12" deep (makes peat).
    Drunk 8-9 cups tea today.
    Weather has been balmy. Convivial gatherings on front porch [of] hostel last two nights. Scots say it never happens [weather]. Danes, Italians, Poles, Germans, Nederlands.

    26p, 26p, 28p post cards
    1.40 lunch
    1.80 hostel
    38p jam
    91p spam

    Changed $20 to 12.30

    Falls of Dochart
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    Craig aChailleach from Killin
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    Last edited by DCampbell16B; 15th March 23 at 08:00 AM. Reason: Added photos
    "There is no merit in being wet and/or cold and sartorial elegance take second place to common sense." Jock Scot

  10. #28
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    9 July

    Washed clothes. Wore kilt as it was clean. English couple stopped and asked for directions. Acted Scottish and said little.
    [So to expand on the entry. My clothes were sorely in need of cleaning. The only thing I had to wear was my kilt. So dirty clothes went in a big black plastic garbage bag. The bag went over my should and I sauntered off to the laundrette. Sure enough an English couple pulled up in a car to ask if I knew where the golf course was. Now I'm in a quandry. These poor people think they've met a real Scottish Highlander. If I speak more than three words they'll know I'm an imposter. I'd picked up the "Ach", and could roll my "r's", and nothing us worse than overdoing a fake accent. So I kept it to three words and said "Ach, no sorry". I've no idea if they were tickled or annoyed to have met a genuine rude Scotsman.]
    3 other men in town wearing kilt. Want to swim today. Change to jeans first? See ruins up the road (didn't), Falls of Lochy.
    Took "Bath" in Falls of Dochart*, and sat beside West end of Loch Tay. Stocked up for Sunday. Rainstorm. Thunder/lightning. Didn't last long. Very tired. Because [I] didn't drink any tea? Withdrawl. Saw a family stacking hay across the street in stacks rather than bales. Stacked over a tripod w/ 4ft legs and roped down.
    [*I was able to find a hole in the rocks filled with water and got in right up to my neck. I remember lots of moms with young kids playing in the water and on the rocks up and downs the sides of the Dochart]

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    1.00 clothes laundry
    1.80 hostel
    20p biscuits
    49 1/2 p soup
    32p fruit
    Last edited by DCampbell16B; 29th March 23 at 04:52 PM. Reason: Added photos
    "There is no merit in being wet and/or cold and sartorial elegance take second place to common sense." Jock Scot

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  12. #29
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    I hope people are enjoying this thread. I see it is being read.
    "There is no merit in being wet and/or cold and sartorial elegance take second place to common sense." Jock Scot

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  14. #30
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    10 July

    Walked. Found old Perthshire style stone house abandoned. Had 2 wall beds, tin roof over wood slabs. Fireplace, coal, chimney in gable. Fireplace through the roof, overhang hearth. Wall paper, many layers over stove inside. Byre, props for roof show just as I.F.Grant "Highland Folkways". Large flags on the floor of the byre.

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    Lamb came up and sucked on my finger - couple weeks old, not afraid. Falls of Lochy nearly empty due to Hydro, but rocks are impressive. Am feeling much better than when I left States. Then if one little thing went wrong I felt awful, but kept on. Now I'm relaxed enough to not care. Girls sweaters Susan? Mom, Buster, boys [this is all family while I was wondering what to bring back to them. Sweaters for my sister's and step sisters (I did something different)]. Sharon [sister] should come just to see the gardens. Spent 120 on living so far. 125 on jacket/train [not living expenses]. Purple rhododendron in profusion here. Thought I saw a fox at Hydro Lochy [? does that make sense?]
    Well, am still tired today, some little diarrhea, but better than yesterday. Maybe it wasn't the tea. 3 kilts Clachaig [seen? Don't know what I meant]. Large group of French kids w/ leader through Killin today. More than anything French reminds me of someone trying to gargle [Sorry all! Especially French speakers! Not one of my languages!]. Group of Italians at Bridge of Lochy Hotel. Very hazy today. Lady is working on the restoration of Menzies Castle, am helping her out. Mrs.Storrier? Hills gradually becoming visible. Trying for Oban Tuesday- Friday. Got through on phone [to hostel] 7:00, was asked to call back 7:30, couldn't. Tried hour, the op the[?] couldn't get through. Oh well.
    Last edited by DCampbell16B; 31st March 23 at 12:56 PM. Reason: Corrected spelling
    "There is no merit in being wet and/or cold and sartorial elegance take second place to common sense." Jock Scot

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