A picnic at Ardmore Point, Helensburgh

This might be the closest to insta-blogging I’ve ever come (can we make this a thing?). Returning to the west coast last night in a blur of service stations and neighbouring vehicles, the sun rose again on another beautiful May day this morning. We’d left Edinburgh behind and the constant pollution — both noise and traffic — had dissolved into quiet village life. I love … Continue reading A picnic at Ardmore Point, Helensburgh

A short and sweet walk above Aberfoyle, Trossachs

I love the Trossachs. Sitting north-east of Loch Lomond — about an hour from Glasgow — it’s a range of rolling hills, hidden lochs and cute cottages on the waterfront. It’s one of those ‘places of my childhood’. Do you know the ones I mean? Those hideaways you always feel safe in, that bring back fuzzy memories of sitting in the backseat of the car … Continue reading A short and sweet walk above Aberfoyle, Trossachs

My first taste of winter mountaineering in Scotland

Always wanted to try your hand at hiking in the white stuff, but not sure where to start? Just like me, then! I was lucky enough to attend a Winter Skills Course with ClimbMTS a few weeks ago so — if you fancy giving it a go — here’s the lowdown on what might be your best ever day in the Scottish outdoors. The week before One week to … Continue reading My first taste of winter mountaineering in Scotland

Walking in the Lomond Hills, near Falkland, Fife

A wintry walk at East Lomond, Falkland (as seen in Outlander)

Winter in Scotland has been pretty half-hearted this year. We’ve had a few flurries, far more on the highest hills, but for those of us in Leith… well, it’s been non-existent. So when snow is forecast, us city dwellers do the obvious — chase it. Last weekend, we took the car over the Forth Road Bridge and onto the Fife plains, direction Falkland. It’s a … Continue reading A wintry walk at East Lomond, Falkland (as seen in Outlander)

Growing up by St Peter’s Seminary, Cardross

I first caught wind of the NVA’s sparkling proposals for St Peter’s a few weeks ago on Instagram. Since moving away from Cardross — my childhood home for over 22 years — I had been out of touch with the village. But a social media mention of Hinterland — the ambitious sound and light show that would take place at the abandoned seminary, launching Scotland’s … Continue reading Growing up by St Peter’s Seminary, Cardross

Owning the outdoors at Go Ape Aberfoyle

I can’t imagine a more outdoorsy man than my dad. Ever since I was little, he’s dragged me up hills, through marshes, into a kayak and towards trig points. He is that guy who — at fifty-two — still insists on donning his foul weather gear to head up the mountains, regardless of the weather or his dodgy hips. So, when I was organising my trip … Continue reading Owning the outdoors at Go Ape Aberfoyle