It’s been a week of highs and lows. The highs occurred in the garden when Beanie proved that she’s more than a match for those pesky squeaking space hoppers.
The lows occurred ironically while going up Conic Hill again. We had a brief burst of good weather and decided to revisit the hill – this time strictly at walking pace and sticking to the paths – to get a proper look & sniff at it. Unfortunately his Biggleship decided that to use this as the venue for his latest attempt on the world aaaaarrffing record. It was a shame because he’d been doing a lot better on country walks of late, but for some reason Conic Hill put him in the mood for extreme baying. And it certainly was extreme; his squeaks, aaarrfs, oinks and warbles echoed round the hill and eventually he even got into a long distance conversation with some other dog way back down in the Balmaha car park. We’re used to getting small outbursts from him, particularly at the start of a descent, but this was a return to the bad old days where it never really lets up until we’re right back at ground level. It was not only tiring but embarrassing when we encountered other walkers.
Adding to the embarrassment was the fact that I’d neglected to empty my coat pocket after the garden play session, and still had Beanie’s space hopper in there. I tried to reposition it but still I had a tendency to squeak any time I moved my arms. On the very rare occasions that Biggles took a breather from his baying, I was still squeaking away with every step. Not good. Even worse was the fact that somehow amid all the noise and distraction caused by her brother, Beanie managed to get offlead twice. The first time she managed to wriggle out of her harness (we’d neglected to tighten it up sufficiently) but thankfully responded to our emergency recall command just as she was starting to pick up speed. The second time the clip on her lead somehow came undone – maybe it rubbed against Biggles’ lead in just the wrong way – but we got hold of her before she realized she was free. So all things considered, this was not the relaxing, minor hill walk it was meant to have been, but it was remarkably pretty given the modest height.
Near the start of the walk reflections in a perfectly still small lake gave the illusion that reeds where floating in mid air
The winding path just beyond the forest
A brief moment of order & peace on the summit, but you can still count on someone to stick their tongue out for the group photo!
Yeah the views are nice…
But someone has spotted some sheep and the noise machine is about to start up again
Biggles is a noisy bugger but we still love him.. just about..
When we’d completed the descent (some of it conducted on our bums to avoid being pulled down at high speed by crazy Beagles) we took an extra stroll along the “Balmaha Millennium Forest path”. This took us up to the site of an Iron Age fort, then back to the car park via the shores of Loch Lomond. It was little more than a kilometre in length but very pretty, and now we were back at ground level and away from the scent of sheep, it was also mercifully quiet. Apart from the odd squeak from my pocket that is.
Peaceful sniffing at last!
The view point by the site of the fort
A chance to get some sand between Beagle toes on a short stretch of beach
The way back goes across a modern but attractive bridge. Biggles wasn’t keen on the grid-like floor of the bridge and had to be carried over it but Beanie was able to spider-beagle her way across.