A Happy New Year to all my visitors, wherever you hail from!
The choice of walk this year was a local one – a figure of eight from the small village of Twechar taking in a couple of Roman Forts and the Forth & Clyde Canal.
There was a blue sky and a bitter wind as we set off to Barhill Fort, a hugely important relic of the Antonine Wall and one of the best preserved sections.
Close by is an Iron Age Fort giving some stunning views across the Kelvin Valley. We get a nice aerial display from a buzzard enjoying the strong breeze.
We followed the line of the wall, the defensive ditch remarkably well preserved, heading towards the large bar and restraunt at Auchinstarry.
The basin was busy with walkers and boats, although the pub was unfortunately closed.
From there we followed the South side of the Canal bank, heading along a network of paths towards Croy.
The path was steadily rising and eventually burst out the trees with extensive views east.
Here we turned back towards Twechar, heading up and over Croy Hill, once again following the line of the Antonine Wall and the remarkably well preserved ditch. It is easy to forget that you are walking in between the urban sprawl of central Scotland, and this section is even slightly reminiscent of Hadrians Wall.
We passed Auchinstarry again (the pub was still shut) and completed the walk by following the canal back to Twechar and the car.