1 EAGLETON NOTES: Another Walk in The Woods

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Monday, 24 June 2019

Another Walk in The Woods

It was a beautiful morning: sunny (almost), mild (almost), dry (for the next two hours). I decided that I wouldn't need to don my waterproofs and could enjoy my walk in the woods with just a light windproof jacket over my shirt and light fleece (not really midsummer attire). So off I set on a walk through the Castle Grounds. I have a great choice of routes depending on the weather and the direction of the wind and, possibly, the driven rain. The trees can be a great source of protection and one doesn't want to be tramping across a wide open stretch or along the waterfront in the rain with the gale in your face driving the rain under one's hood and hat and down one's neck.

A number of people have commented on the lack of trees on Lewis and some have asked what my walks are like. I've posted some photos from my walks in the past but I decided today that with the trees in full leaf I'd give you the full works just to show that I really can walk in the woods.

The walk. Clockwise.
The following photos are shown in the order of the walk

Speedwell (I think)

A few rhododendrons are still out 

The Ninth Hole

Monkey Flower, Mimulus guttatas (?)


Across the golf course going North

Along the Willow Glen






Leaving the Willow Glen and returning South

Add caption

Looking North across the course


Along the river towards the harbour

An alternative path that I didn't take.

Along the harbour side

The Woodlands

43 comments:

  1. Wow that is a beautiful walk. So green and lush, I guess that is because it rains a lot but this day looked perfect.

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    1. Diane, the climate and the millions of tons of imported soil all contributed to their establishment over 100 years ago.

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  2. Looks wonderful. Is it a marked "walk" or is it just local knowledge? We are looking at visiting Lewis on holiday next year and would love to do a walk like this.

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    1. Good to hear that you may be coming to Lewis, Helsie. I do hope that we meet and, if you need a guide, I'll happily do my best. Some of the walks and mountain bike trails are marked but there are maps and it's pretty difficult to get lost . There is a huge amount of interest on Lewis and Harris as well as stunning scenery. The ferries are very busy though so I would suggest booking early. It's unlikely in that summer that you could just turn up and get on.

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  3. You proved it. There are lots of trees!

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  4. Thats all just glorious! to my Australian eyes it looks like a movie set or a post card

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    1. Kylie, the scale of things is totally different. You have forests and we have woods. We do, however, have some huge and magnificent beaches and they are shark-free. However the temperature is a little cooler - just a little 😂

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  5. I knew that Lewis has trees. Only round the castle though. Weather looks grand.

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    1. Actually, Adrian, since you were last here there have been a lot of coniferous plantations and one or two of those now have walks as well.

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    2. Graham don't muddle trees and wind farms. It confuses oldies like me.....I should perhaps identify as Don Quijote. Quijote is southern Spanish for Quixote which is more a Basque thing, those buggers have (X)s by the dozen in all words. Both are pronounced as Keehowtee in a North English Spanish accent. I once fell in lust with a Basque folk singer lady. She was amazed by my butchered Spanish and insisted on speaking and then writing down lots of exes. I got bored who in a christian country writes kisses to a bloke sitting next to them? The world is insane and so was she. All I got out of the liaison was a free CD. I'll pop one of her tracks on a video. Gorgeous she was.
      Sorry for this, I'm waiting for a video render.

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  6. I can see the forest and I can see the trees! Beautiful photos, Graham. :)

    A heavy shower of rain is just coming to an end here as I type. (Well...outside...not literally "here"!)

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    1. Thanks, Lee. Many people take trees for granted but we certainly do not.

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  7. It all looks beautiful, as are your photos. Being a keen mushroom gatherer, I wonder whether your woods provide anything worth eating?

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    1. Cro, there are many, many lichens indicative of the clean air and lots of rotted material but fungi and mushrooms are things I've rarely seen.

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  8. Definitely trees! A beautiful walk and one I'd certainly enjoy, it also looks a good, even running path when it is dry enough. There is blue sky in your photos, too!

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    1. Meike, there are plenty of walkers, runners and even mountain bikers on their specially made trails in the woods. The blue skies can be a bit rarer. My walk today will certainly not be in the sun.

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  9. It looks so beautiful. What a lovely walk. I can almost breathe in the damp woody air of the Glen.

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    1. Jules, having had a glimpse into what you enjoy in the outdoor life, I have no hesitation in saying that I'm sure you'd love Lewis and Harris.

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  10. Apart from the Harbour shot, one could imagine that you were in deepest, darkest Surrey! My Home county.

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    1. Potty, the real difference is the 10 cars that I'll pass on the 7 miles on my way to the Woods this morning.

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  11. That looks like quite a long walk, but a colourful one.

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    1. Hi Amy. It was just a couple of miles (about 3 ks). My usual walks range from just under 2 miles to 6 miles. My favourite one is 3 miles which just works up my appetite for my morning coffee.

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  12. It looks like a very pleasant walk. Not at all how I imagined Lewis to be. So ordered and not wild. Thank you for showing the photos.

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    1. Rachel, it's not truly representative of most of Lewis but it's very good in the sort of weather we've been having. Walking across moors and along shores can be cold and windy and wet with no shelter at all.

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  13. It really doesn't look like The Isle of Lewis at all - more like The Isle of Wight. May I suggest that you wear a motorcycle helmet when walking across or by the golf course. We wouldn't want your blogging activity to come to sudden and tragic end. A fluorescent orange helmet would be best. Also consider wearing a cricketer's "box" - just in case.

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    1. YP, your advice would be very well taken on a Saturday or any weekday afternoon or evening. There are few golfers out here on a weekday morning. Sunday is the safest day. The Stornoway Trust still refuses to allow Sunday play. They own the land.

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  14. How wonderful to be able to take that walk whenever you want to and not have to travel miles to do it. It is a beautiful place and you have tempted me to plan a visit.

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  15. I would never have guessed Isle of Lewis. North Carolina, maybe. Absolutely gorgeous. How invigorated you must feel after such a walk!

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    1. Bob, I certainly am always ready for my coffee!

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  16. A truly lovely walk. I believe that one reason Scotland generally is so denuded of trees is the grazing. I've been hearing about all the unique rainforest in some parts of Scotland. Last time I was in Skye, many years ago, they had fenced off a whole area and were planning to let it regenerate. I would like to see it now. My guess is that the woodlands you showed have taken many many years to develop that amount of variety and are quite old.

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    1. Jenny, the woodlands in Stornoway were planted by Sir James Matheson (of the huge company Jardine Matheson) in the mid 1800s on soil imported and overlaid on the rough grazing ground. Over centuries, trees were destroyed by Vikings seeking to deny islanders wood to build boats and later cleared for grazing land and growing crops. Centuries of such rough grazing has added to incredible peat deposits too. There are large coniferous plantations and some older deciduous species are also being planted. The problem is keeping the deer away from them.

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  17. I'm glad you have such a lovely place to take your walks. There wouldn't be many places that offer such lush surroundings and shelter. And trees. And the Woodlands. Gosh, golfers on Lewis would be hardy souls!

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    1. Thanks, Pauline. I'm very lucky but it doesn't stop me missing my New Zealand days very much.

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  18. I greatly enjoyed this walk through your provided photos and explanations. Thanks for taking me along and I didn’t even need to get out of my chair.

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    1. Beatrice, we have just had two glorious days when I would have given a lot to have been on one of my usual walks but, unfortunately, I've been working on the house ready for workmen arriving tomorrow. Hopefully I'll take you on another Lewis walk before the end of the summer.

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  19. Good to see what it looks looks like along the paths that you so often walk! Looks like a very nice walk. And I agree with some other comments above - if I had just seen the pictures out of context, my first guess would not have been the Isle of Lewis either! ;)

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    1. Monica, it is very deceptive but this Island has changed in so many ways since I came in the '70s.

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  20. I thoroughly enjoyed going on your walk with you today!

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