Monday, 24 March 2014

Spring Has Sprung.

Sunday morning was a nice sunny one, so a wee trip along by the coast & a return trip up the hill roads & trails back home was required, nothing too strenuous today as I'm on night shift tonight & have a few jobs to do in the garden that I've put off for too long, so on with the ride...
Crossing the A1 road onto the old Skateraw road towards the beach, passing this field with huge furrows in preparation for planting the tatties.

A recently opened little walkway down by Skateraw farm with a little quiet spot & picnic bench.

Barns Ness lighthouse & Skateraw limekiln familiar views these are along the John Muir Way but not for long as the new extended JMW which opens on 21st April this year seems to be missing out this section. 
The present JMW route is from Fisherrow harbour in the nearby town of Musselburgh & ends in Cockburnspath just into the Scottish Borders which then links up with the start/end of The Southern Upland Way, where as the new extended route is from Helensburgh on the the west coast to Dunbar (Muirs birthplace) in the east coast missing out the section from Dunbar to Cockburnspath ! Maybe this 4-5 mile section will be re-named ?

I love walking the bike along this bit of the coast down by Skateraw to Torness, it is jam packed full of fossils of marine crustaceans, corals, plants & beaches all locked up in the huge slabs of limestone a good 4 or 5 hundred yards long & every time there is a storm or high tide it seems to unveil more of the hidden treasures.

The Dunbar lifeboat poised & ready for action moored at Torness power station harbour.

Around the perimeter of Torness power station & the sea looked amazing today really blue with a nice cool fresh wind.
Thorntonloch beach...All to myself :-)
Off the beach onto the cliff top trail of the JMW towards Dunglass beach & stopping to take a picture of these daffodils smiling in the sun at the edge of the Bilsdean burn waterfall.

More fossil hunting down at Dunglass beach & these are tree bark & root fossils from trees called Lepidodendron / Lycopod also known as Scale trees. These trees reached heights of 30 metres (100 ft) & thrived during the carboniferous period 359-299 million years ago.

And what an amazing fossil of the root, I think I will come down with the tools to extract this through the week. You can see how it's embedded in the grey rock which is hard when it's dry but when wet it turns to a soft sludge, so it will be easy to extract, again this is another great geological area for fossils after storm rains & big tides. This like many many others would & will just fall into the sea to be broken up by the tide.

How about this then ?? I remember seeing this years ago & every time I'm down this beach I look out for it & now with a shift in sands it's now exposed again.
It is a chain which has been wrapped around a wooden post & it has all fused & rusted together !! It would make a great garden ornament but just a bit on the heavy side to carry to the car.

Heading inland now towards the Dunglass estate,

Passing through Dunglass estate to Springfield farm & it was great seeing & hearing the birds singing from Sky Larks, Yellow Hammers, Goldfinches, Chiffchaffs etc singing from the hedgerows, fields, trees & up in the air, who needs music when nature already provides it.

On the way back I cut through this little trail that I've been meaning to explore for ages, it's an old road between Branxton & Blackcastle farm but it has good views over the coast below & the sea beyond.
Branxton farm with a great big pylon in the field & Torness power station over the hill & through the trees.

A couple of little guffy's foraging & rooting around in the woods & the joys of spring, proof natures season has turned full circle again with the early flowering Gorse & Ribes bushes & below that the furry catkins of the Willow bush.

Tor Bridge not far outside my home village of Innerwick, I came across these pictures in a book that I have explaining that the two pictures above based on an eyewitness description of how the Home Guard might have looked when preparing to blow up the bridge to halt the Germans advancing.
While the pictures are quite realistic you would have to assume that the Home Guard would have paid greater attention to staying under cover in a real-life situation.
The eyewitness also alluded to the presence of a 'Flamme Fougasse' at the Tor Bridge.

Another curiosity I spotted on an old map is this bridge again just outside Innerwick, It's called Edinken Bridge & there is very little of it remaining other than a few stones from the under arch on both sides of the Braidwood burn. I can't find any information for this old bridge & I can't even figure out where it would be linking a route / road too, but it does seem to head in the direction of Innerwick castle.

A nice quiet little spot at the bridge location, one of my little girls who is a keen mountain biker wants to go on a little biking camping trip when the weather heats up a bit, a little bonfire & some camp fire cooking of sausages & marsh mallows & this is the perfect spot only 10 minutes from home perfect look forward to that :-)

Doing a bit of exploring along the Braidwood burn, all nice & tranquil only to round the corner to see...

...a farm dump where for years scrap metal & rubbish from old cars, oil drums, tattie howkers baskets, old washing machines, cookers etc the list goes on ! It has just been thrown over the banking down into the burn below terrible !!!

And on a lighter note, nice to see the calves at Innerwick farm.

Hope you liked the little tour come back soon & thanks again for looking.