Benchmarked

Today’s guest picture was sent to me by my friend Bruce who seems to have popped up in Spain.   He had an excursion today to the monastery at Montserrat and found a statue there of interest.  He claims that its eyes followed him about wherever he went.  Look closely at the triptych which he took and you can see what he means.

MontserratI didn’t need to be followed anywhere this morning as I stayed firmly at home doing nothing more exciting than making some slow cooked lamb stew and a pot of coffee.  Sandy joined us for coffee on his way home from a fifteen mile cycle ride which put me to shame.

Mrs Tootlepedal was hard at work doing preparatory work for the final decoration of the downstairs room and I lent a small hand from time to time.

I did take a walk round the garden.   I found two small tortoiseshell butterflies trapped in a spider’s web in the garage and Mrs Tootlepedal came with her delicate fingers and freed them.  We were worried that they might be fatally injured but after a little basking in the sun…

butterfly…they both flew off looking quite chipper.

New flowers are to be seen.

tulip
The first of many tulips
forsythia
A few forsythia flowers

The tadpoles are beginning to roam free in the pond.

tadpolesSpurred into action by a sardine sandwich for lunch, I put on my walking shoes and walked up to the top of Timpen, a 1000 ft summit behind our house.  I had my cameras with me but I was more interested in walking than shooting so I took my walking poles along and hardly stopped until I had made it to the top of the hill.

Two brief photo ops detained me on my way up.

Hill cattle
With the hill cattle around, I had to be careful not to get between mother and calf.  They can be fiercely protective.
meadow pipits
I saw quite a few of these little birds on the hillside.
meadow pipits
They turned out to be meadow pipits.

There is a trig point with a bench mark on the summit….

benchmarkThe numbers do not refer to the height above sea level which is 1069 ft.  Another benchmark near our house in the town is at a height of 269 ft and this shows that I had climbed exactly 800 ft, as my route had not involved any loss of height.

It was another hazy day but I took a couple of shots from the top of the hill.

Langholm
The town just visible 800 ft below.
Craigcleuch
In the other direction I could see Craigcleuch, one of the houses built by mill owners in Victorian times.

The light was very variable but every now and again, a bit of sunlight penetrated the haze and lit up a view.

Castle HillI went (very carefully) down the steeper side of the hill towards the Bentpath road and could see the pheasant hatchery on the Castleholm laid out like a map plan below me.

CastleholmOnce back on the road, I crossed it and walked back to Langholm through the woods to the Duchess Bridge.  I was greeted by a very charming bunch of primroses.

primrosesThe recent dry weather has made the path much less muddy than usual and it was a pleasure to walk along it.

Duchess bridge walkThe bridge itself is very difficult to see because of the trees lining the riverside…

Duchess Bridge…and if I was the landowner, I would make sure that there was at least one gap in the trees so that walkers could admire this historic bridge.

When I got home, Mrs Tootlepedal had reached a natural hiatus in her decorating tasks so we went for a nine and a half mile cycle ride up and down the Wauchope road in the the warm early evening sunshine.  The trees at the school are retreating ever further along the banks of the river.

Wauchope school treesWe turned for home at Westwater and had a quick look at the massive wooden circular construction there which will be used for a falconry centre there.   You can see a picture of it at the end of Gavin’s latest blog.

When we got home, Mrs Tootlepedal washed one of a pair of big velvet curtains from the front room in a large tub and I helped her to hang it out.  I question whether it will ever dry out but we can but hope.

I took a picture of a euphorbia before I went back in.

euphorbiaThe lamb stew turned out very well after my gravy chef had worked her magic and provided us with a good meal.  As I was feeling inexplicably snoozy, the rest of the evening saw no action of note at all.

Bird  action was very limited in the garden during the day but as I was waiting for the stew, I did see a late flying chaffinch.

chaffinch

Published by tootlepedal

Cyclist, retired teacher, curmudgeon, keen amateur photographer.

30 thoughts on “Benchmarked

  1. That was quite a hike for some one taking it easy, you have real hills there. I’d have to drive a considerable distance to see that much elevation change in so short of distance. The views and photos were worth it though, at least from my view as some one who gets to enjoy them without having to have made the climb. 😉

  2. Does anyone live at Craigcleuch? I see that there’s a Grade B listed house of that name – is it the same place? Lovely – ‘tho not someplace I’d want to have to maintain!

      1. Titanium knee – 6 Million Dollar Man, you will galloping up the hills!!!!

  3. Craigcleuch looks more like a castle! I see what you mean by that statue’s eyes following people. I would love to walk these hills. No chance of a poisonous snake and the views are lovely! I’m glad Mrs Tootlepedal rescued that beautiful butterfly. What a beauty it is.

      1. Well, I never knew that. Thanks for telling me. I will now have to read about them. it seems there are few places in the world without venomous snakes. 🙂

  4. An interesting and enjoyable post, I loved the picture of the cow and her calf, the primroses and the views from the top of the hill. You managed a good shot of the bridge too despite your complaints.

  5. With all that exercise, no wonder you were tired at the end of the day! I enjoyed all the photographs today. Wet velvet curtains! I don’t think my washing line could cope!

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