All posts by Ken Brown

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It’s an Effin Shame

In light of a new comment by curveyhiker I ‘ve “bumped” this old post.  Have a look down the comments to see why.
In the news this week the existence of the wee town of Effin was banned by that demon of social networking – Facebook- for being a sweary word in disguise. Undeterred I am prepared to flout such blatant censorship and bring you the original…the one and only..Matt McGinn. The spelling may be slightly different…but it’s the same sweary word in disguise.

The Featured Panel

This blog layout provides a “Featured Panel” at the top of the front page.  From time to time I will put old posts from the archives into the panel for those of you who may have missed them first time around…or for those of you with problems of recall …or for those masochists amongst you who would actually want to read them more than once.

At the time (2008) these were the indicators of the start of the path up the hill.

Venison Pie Hill

It’s hard to know why the story of our wee trip in April 2008 to the Corbett, Beinn Each, was never written.  I found it one of the most enjoyable half day walks we ever tackled, courtesy of a mere 2m of bog…one of the lowest bog counts encountered on our travels.  Maybe its omission was due to our busy hillwalking schedule or perhaps because the walk was so short it was damn near impossible to create a decent back story – something de rigeur for the Fatdog “Tails” of that period.  In those days the “Tails” appeared on the forum scottishhills.com.  It would be another 8 months before the first incarnation of Where The Fatdog Walks would hit the blogoshere.

What the day lacked in headline news it made up for in both weather and views from the summit, although they were a bit on the hazy side for decent photographs.  However, the highlight of the trip had to be lunch – venison pies from Mhor Bread in Callander.  I am salivating as I recall those juicy meat and veg filled, pastry-lined, treasures.  Food like that made it a day for lazing around and enjoying the experience while at the same time taking in the superb view across Loch Lubnaig to Ben Ledi.  The Fatdog’s drool did detract somewhat from the moment but you learn to put up with such minor inconveniences when faced with such culinary magic.

It was an effortless hill; a short section of forest path (some say creepy and gloomy) from the A84 at Ardchullarie More on the edge of Loch Lubnaig; a quick meander along the old estate track in Glen Ample; then at the cairn (and stone arrow) onto the narrow path up the grassy slopes of Beinn Each itself.  A whacking great total of 6.5km!  That must be one of the shortest round trips for a hill from one of the major Scottish hill groups.

I would love to do it again…but not at the minute.  First of all getting the pups out of the “Tank” next to the busy A84 gives me the shivers just thinking about it…then there are the sheep in Glen Ample.  God knows what the wee delinquents would make of them.  But it’s still a great little hill…doable even with my sciatic niggles.

Click on the first photo to bring up the carousel.

The Restoration Begins!

As I brush a thick layer of dust from the cover of the huge leatherbound tome, the ornately scrolled title becomes clearer.  Where The Fatdog Walks stands out in big black letters; once shiny but now dimmed by time and faded in memory.  This near-forgotten volume of “Tails” still holds the magic of days past and a picture of places to which I may never return.

“Ugh…!” you say,

 “We don’t come here for mushy claptrap like ‘…places to which I may never return!’”

No…I have to correct you on that point .  There are many places to which I have no intention of ever  returning…because they were soddin’ unpleasant and I should never have visited them in the first soddin’ place!  But I have no doubt I will mention that in posts to come.

The dust covers have been whipped off Where The Fatdog Walks to begin the delicate restoration of what was once a fine piece of work.  I’ll be adding missing adventures and taking a look back at some of the more interesting incidents over the 6 years of our adventures.  The new blog layout will be be ideal for galleries of photographs, some of which were not used in the original “Tails”.  I have not as yet decided whether to import all the old stories or whether to take a more generally reflective approach to our adventures using extracts from the originals.  At the minute the latter is looking the more likely.

I attempted to keep the blog going after we lost Maisie (The Fatdog) but found it incredibly difficult to write, especially on a regular basis.  I’ve lost count of how many times I began a post, stared blankly at the screen for 5 minutes…then turned the computer off and went back downstairs. In an attempt to break away from the past I opened Reservoir Dugz, based on the new pups, but again found that I still couldn’t break past the quiet sadness.  I nearly gave up blogging altogether…until recently.

It would appear that nearly year and a half later the past is now behind me and, at long last, I’m able to produce new work without the dark shadow of the events of 2012 looming over me. I can  now begin the restoration of the blog and create a  proper archive of our adventures.

I realise that there may be nobody out there to read this now…and in truth it’s maybe not a blog in the accepted sense.  But it is a record of events, something left in print that says;

“We did all THIS!”

Welcome once again to Where The Fatdog Walks.