Winter Walks

The evenings are getting lighter and there is definitely a hint of spring in the air with the snow drops shooting up. But it is still winter, the cold air says so. This last week it has been the coldest its been so far in 2017. There has been snow on the mountains for days and when we went for our weekend dog walk there was ice covering the puddles and edges of the lochs.

A couple of weeks ago, on another cold but sunny Saturday, we took the dogs out to find a good hill to climb. We generally leave Tobermory not knowing where we are going and just pick a forestry commission track that looks like it might go somewhere interesting. That’s what we did on this occasion. We wound our way up a hill called Coire nam Fiadh.

The views were fantastic. The colours of the landscape up here are amazing in winter, dusty browns and dark greens mixed with purple shades from the heather, and the bright blues of the sea and sky.

We even spotted an eagle (I think) in the distance.

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The weekend just gone we went up to Ardmor. An area of forestry commission that has great views over to Ardnamurchan, ruined crofts and tracks down to the sea.

That was a cold day, ice everywhere and snow visible on the mountains in the distance. We even saw a small ice formation that I’ve never seen in this country before. I last saw it on a trip to Iceland during my A-levels, and of course I cant remember what its called. It happens when its so cold the water in the soil freezes and pushes the top layer of soil upwards.

The small ponds along the track had a thin layer of ice covering them, much to Reuben’s delight. It was so funny watching him slide over the thicker bits of ice and then crash through the thin bits. He spent ages pouncing on the ice to break it up.

We had such a lovely walk. There’s nothing better than a beautifully sunny but crisp and cold winter day.

That might have been another eagle, or maybe just a large buzzard. Must remember my binoculars next time.

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