Out and about and about.

Today’s guest picture from my sister Mary rather puts the bridges over the Kirtle Water into the shade.

Tower Bridge with Canary Wharf in the background

We woke up to a proper winter’s day today, with frost on the ground and a nip in the air.  At 1°C it still wasn’t below freezing point although it was too cold for me to go out of the bicycle.

Having considered my options and consulted with Mrs Tootlepedal, whose options were curtailed by an engagement to go to the Embroiders’ Guild meeting, I made an arrangement with Sandy to have a cup of coffee and go for a walk.

While I was waiting for him to arrive, I spotted a robin lurking in a bush…


…took shots of two perching chaffinches who were enjoying the sunshine…

perching chaffinches

…and put out some blackbird pellets.  These quickly attracted black birds…..


…but they were jackdaws who soon gobbled up all the pellets and flew off chortling.

There were more flying birds about today than you could shake a stick at.

flying birds at the feeder

When we had finished out coffee, Sandy drove us down to the Tarras bridge on the Claygate road.  We stopped on the way to admire the mist streaming across the road at Broomholm as the sun warmed it up.

mist on Claygate road

The moss on the wall was literally steaming.

Moss steam

There was mist just before we got to the bridge as well.

Tarras Bridge

I was pleased that I wasn’t on my bike because although the road in general was clear, the bridge itself was a sheet of ice and would have posed a nasty problem having a sharp bend at the bottom of a steep hill.

We left the car at the bridge and walked along the track beside the Tarras.  There has been a lot of rain recently so there were many puddles to choose from for the obligatory icy-in-a-puddle winter shot.

Ice in a puddle

And every branch was dripping as we passed.


The bank of the Tarras shows why there is currently so much current interest on coal in the Canonbie area.


On closer examination the seams almost look as though there are the work of a builder.


The track was exceedingly wet….

Track by tarras

…but the sun was exceedingly sunny….

Tree beside tarras

…so we didn’t mind.

We spotted quite a lot of fallen branches with this on…

white fluff on branch)

…and couldn’t make up our minds as to whether it was vegetable or frost based.  Can anyone help us?  It was quite soft to the touch, rather like cotton wool.

We didn’t walk far as Sandy wanted to be home in time for lunch (and that suited me too) and so we stopped taking pictures and headed back to the car.

Mrs Tootlepedal was just leaving home, needle in hand, as I got back.  I waved her off, had some soup and got the slow bike out and pedalled carefully round to the Kilngreen.  I was hoping to see the heron but it was elsewhere and I had an enjoyable time watching the ducks and gulls instead.

Things were quite quiet until a couple came along with some morsels of bread.  This excited the bird life considerably and gave me some good opportunities.

flying mallard



After chatting with Stan, a very good local photographer who was out walking his dog,  I pedalled on up to the rugby club where Langholm, in white, were playing Linlithgow.

There was a select but knowledgeable crowd on the touchline…

Rugby crowd

…and plenty of action on the pitch.

Langholm v Linlinthgow
A lineout
Langholm v Linlinthgow
A scrum
Langholm v Linlinthgow
Linlithgow on the attack
Langholm v Linlinthgow
The Langholm stand off makes a break
Langholm v Linlinthgow
Langholm run in a try.

The try caused ecstasy among the supporters but there was plenty of agony to go with it.  Both physical…

Langholm v Linlinthgow

…and mental.

Langholm v Linlinthgow
The Langholm goal kicker turns away in despair as his kick to win the game in the last minute drifts wide of the posts.

I cycled home full of sympathetic disappointment.

We had an excellent slow cooked beef stew with dumplings for our tea which rounded off a fine winter day in traditional style.

The flying bird of the day is a gull making off with a good chunk of bread.

gull with bread

Published by tootlepedal

Cyclist, retired teacher, curmudgeon, keen amateur photographer.

23 thoughts on “Out and about and about.

  1. Fantastic photos of the mist on the Tarras road, the strata in the rock, and as always, good birds – especially Iike the jackdaws. Hmmm, that white stuff! Possibly one of the slime molds? Or a fungus? I’ve seen it before, but don’t know it’s proper I.D. Sorry! How about putting the photo on iSpot? I’m sure you’ll get an answer there.

    1. Having looked at the link, I don’t think that is what is was. It was very dense and like what we call cotton wool. As always though, you may well turn out to be right.

    1. They couldn’t afford me. No but seriously, I wouldn’t want to be tied down to having to take photos. They do occasionally use pictures of mine.

  2. Great shots as always. I particularly enjoyed the rugby match, complete with the action photo at the end – a unique combination of the action and the emotion that went with it.

  3. Loved the atmospheric misty shots. The rugby looked like fun, far more manly than football but the same emotions. The coal seams are interesting. I’m surprised no one has made away with them for their fire.

  4. Loved the misty shots, and of course the lurking robin. Great action pictures of the rugby game. Glad you had some sunshine for your walk and ride.

  5. So many good photos, especially the mist and geological ones. I’m not much of a sports fan, but the rugby pictures capture the action well.

    I followed the frost flower/hair links of the previous comments. Fascinating stuff – I don’t recall seeing anything like it. Of course, it is pretty dry around here and a lot of moisture seems to be required for those frost features.

  6. Nice wintery shots. I was hoping to get some nice ones in Canada from leisurely snowy walks, but it was so incredibly cold and treacherous underfoot, I only got a few from the window or a very fast out the door shot!

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