It’s been quiet around here…

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I haven’t posted much here because, well, truth be told, it hasn’t felt like there has been much to post. The year started off well, and we even had some snow (I love playing in the snow).

walk in the snow

I love an early morning snowy walk

But unfortunately I enjoyed myself a bit too much and I hurt one of my back legs when I was chasing a ball in the snow at the park. After I stretched a bit, it felt ok so I carried on chasing the squirrels. But that night it was definitely ouch-y and I was limping, so I had to go to the vet the next day. No-one seems to know quite what I did but Ross-the-vet said it was probably wasn’t my knee (great news) but was most likely a “soft tissue” injury. This was a bit confusing to me because I injure soft tissues quite regularly and that doesn’t make me limp…

torn up tissue

This is how I treat soft tissues :-)

Anyway, I wasn’t allowed off the lead any more and could only go on short walks.  Imagine walking in the park on the lead when all these squirrels are out playing!! :-(

squirrels at the park

Can you see all those flippin’ squirrels taunting me?

In fact, even those walks were too long as I still kept hopping so I was sentenced to 5-10 minute walks round the block. For 2 weeks! But it did seem to work and I was hopping much less – but then I sneaked out the back door and chased up and down the garden barking at Cat-Next-Door. It was great fun but I started limping again :-(

So we were back to 5-minute walks. Sigh. After that, I did a lot of gazing out of the window to watch everything outside, especially looking out for Cat-Next-Door.

sitting at the window

I can see everything from up here…

And I did lots of snoozing in the sun by the window too…

snoozing on the chair

I do love a sun-puddle…

To be fair, @HeatherAlex did try to make life more interesting with extra games and training. I wasn’t allowed to play Fetch or Chase or Tuggy, of course, so I had to make do with Find-The-Treats. Actually, I do quite like that game :-)

And we practiced some mat work using the clicker. I get very excited when I see the clicker coming out to play, so I have to calm down and go sit on my mat. Sometimes for quite a long time, till I hear the click and can come and get my treat.

on the mat

Look how calm I can be when a treat is only a click away…

We were allowed to gradually increase our walks – adding an extra 5 minutes every few days. But no parks, no rough ground, no stairs… And then I was banned from my favourite chair by the window because I jumped off it when I saw Cat-Next-Door and… you guessed it… I started limping again. Back to 5-minute walks AGAIN. Sigh. Lots more snoozing but not on the high chair any more…

snoozing on sofa

I can’t bear to watch yet another Scottish “gallant defeat” at the rugby…

During this time, @HeatherAlex has been amusing herself too. Even going out for walks without ME! And taking pictures of them to show me too :-(

bridge at Linn park

I haven’t been to Linn Park for ages…

The other thing she was doing was a clear-out. A lot of stuff was cleared out (none of it mine, thank goodness). One thing on February 1st, 2 things on February 2nd, all the way up to 28 things on February 28th. That was an amazing 406 things altogether! From books to games to magazines to CDs to maps to more books, and even out-of-date food from the cupboard (which I did offer to eat). Everything had to be photographed and put on Facebook to see if we could find a new forever home for it*, and I did my best to help.

* well, not the out-of-date food, of course

2 boxed games

It didn’t take long for these to be snapped up with me in the picture :-)

We had to be very firm that I was not included in the deal :-)

Anyway, it’s been nearly 2 months since I hurt myself, but finally we are making progress. I’m still on the short lead all the time, but we are now going to the parks, I’m walking on rougher ground, I’ve been allowed to walk downstairs (not upstairs yet) and our walks are up to 40 minutes. So things are looking up! I did hear that I might be allowed on the extending lead today. I’m looking forward to that :-)

Hopefully I will be back to running and chasing soon, and then there might be more news here…

My blogging year

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Those nice folks at WordPress put together a report about my blogging year… You’ll find it here. For regular readers, it’ll come as no surprise that my (almost) monthly report on The Big Walk was the main blogging I did. Note to self: must do more blogging this year!

A genuinely HUGE thank you to all those who sponsored us on the Big Walk. We raised over £400 for the John Muir Trust to help keep our wild land wild so that we can still enjoy it in generations to come.

John Muir statue

John Muir as a boy – I think I would have liked him

About the Big Walk – who, what, where, when and how much…

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Now that we’ve finished the Big Walk (you can find out about it here), I thought I’d look back at what we did. I had to get @HeatherAlex to do the fancy computer stuff, cos she kept all the records of where, when and how far we walked.

So, in all, between 1 January and 12 October 2014, we walked 1002 miles in wild(ish) places – parks, forests, beaches, hills, countryside and a golf club! Mostly, it was in parks as you can see from the picture. I’m told it is called a “pie chart” but it doesn’t look like any pie I’ve ever seen…

pie chart of walks

As pies go, this one isn’t very tasty!

Of the parks, roughly half of the miles were walked in city parks and the other half in “country parks” like Pollok or Mugdock. Now my friend Phil could tell you all about Scottish country parks because he’s doing research on them, and when he comes to visit, we go try out ones I’ve not been to before. I may not know much about the history of our country parks but I do know that I like them all so far! Especially the ones with squirrels :-)

And of all the walks, if you know what percentages are, apparently 83% were in Scotland, and the rest in England. I think of that as, if there were 5 squirrels, it’s like 4 are in Scotland and 1 is in England… Squirrel-obssessed? me? Well, maybe just a bit…

squirrel eating nut

I would LOVE to get this close to a squirrel!

We averaged 3 and a half miles a day, managing over 100 miles most months.Well, what that means is that @HeatherAlex walked that amount of miles. I, on the other hand, RAN for lots of those miles, and I also ran lots of extra miles chasing balls and – of course – in pursuit of my small furry friends with bushy tails….

The picture below shows how many miles we walked each month. You can see that we didn’t walk as much in July as the other months. I would just like to say that I walked LOTS of miles in July, but I was staying with my friends at Tails of Tranquility while @HeatherAlex was being a Clyde-sider for the Commonwealth Games so those walks didn’t count as the whole point was that we were doing the Big Walk together.

monthly bar chart

This is a “bar chart” but it doesn’t look like any bar I’ve been to…

Although we mostly walked by ourselves, we did have company too, so here are some of the folks who came on our 1000-mile walk. If I have missed anyone – sorry! – just let me know and I will see if I have a photo :-)

Most weeks, we walk with Karen & Murphy (he’s a bit like a Big Brother to me – not as big as he used to be, cos he has lost LOTS of weight and is looking very slim nowadays!) so he was part of quite a few of our walks this year:

Twiglet and Murphy sitting

Are we being good or what??

We walked quite a few walks with Linda, some in England and some when she joined us on holiday in Newton Stewart:

seat

Just big enough for me and Linda…

Our good friend Ally joined us on holiday as well…

Cairnsmore of Fleet

With Ally on the very top of Cairnsmore of Fleet

We quite often walk with Morna & Finzi at the weekends. Somehow Morna has kept out of my pics, but in this one, I’m wearing her sunglasses!

Twig in sunspecs

I think Dior suits me…

And then there’s Phil “Country Parks Are My Speciality” and Carolyn, and our friend Lennox from university days (that’s a LONG time ago, I can tell you!).

Rouken Glen falls

Carolyn & Phil (and me!) at Rouken Glen

in the woods

Lennox & Carolyn at Mugdock Woods – they forgot to include me!

We met up with @RohanTheBT in Killin, which was great – putting a Twitter name and furry face together was good fun!

Killin pub

Someone’s very focussed on the sausages…

Various friends from around Glasgow helped out too:

Drumpellier

Me, my friend Liz and …. something mysterious in the loch at Drumpellier!

The Refresh Group

The Refresh gang let me come to Aberfoyle with them…

And the Stirling & Dollar crew:

Relaxing after a saunter in Glendevon...

Relaxing after a saunter in Glendevon…

From further afield (we went to the Pentlands for this walk):

Pentlands view

Our friend Clare with Maxy & Dougie…

Finally, there was the last walk up Ben A’an, which we did with Jonathan:

summit view

The view… I was off sniffing out wildlife at this point, I think!

As for the “how much?” part of all this… We are still aiming to raise £1007 (our half of the £2014 target for the team). Lots of people and furs have been very generous and we’re doing well (thank you all!) but we’re not quite there yet. Well, being honest, we’ve a fair way to go, seeing as it was quite a big target. So if you like walking in wild land and you’d like to help protect it, would you mind sponsoring us? You can find out what the walk was all about (and make a wee donation) on our JustGiving page here. You might also consider joining the John Muir Trust, volunteering on one of their work parties or buying their Christmas cards – it all helps!

Thanks to all who’ve supported us, come with us, and donated pounds to the sponsorship. We’ve definitely enjoyed the walk this year and will be thinking of new ways to lend a helping paw next year.

The Big Walk is complete!

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Well, who would have thought in January and 1000 miles of pawprints ago that we’d have finished our Big Walk by early October?!

But we did :-) and our 1000th mile was walked on Sunday October 12 on a lovely wee mountain near Loch Katrine called Ben A’an. Hmm, I say “lovely” and indeed the hill is lovely but the alternative route we had to take because of forestry operations was a bit less than lovely. It was very slippery for the humans coming down… I was fine, of course, with my four paws and their claws, but it was quite funny to watch them slipping and saying naughty words!

Anyway, I’ll come back to our final walk on the Big Walk in a minute, because we did have to walk quite a few miles in September and the first bit of October before we could do that Last Mile.

Warning: this post may be a bit longer than usual as we did do quite a bit of walking! So just in case you don’t make it to the end, could I just give a teeny mention to the John Muir Trust (cos that’s who we’ve been walking for)? You can read about why we’re walking here, where you can (if you also love walking on our country’s wild land) also make a wee donation to help protect our special places.

It’ll be no surprise to regular readers that we visited all our usual parks in this home stretch. So here’s a round-up of some of my recent photos from the local parks…

sunshine thru trees

We had some gorgeous autumn mornings in Queens Park…

sunshine thru trees

…and some lovely sunny times in Pollok Park too

box garden at Pollok

I like running through the maze in the flower beds at Pollok House…

There were some windy days as well, though.

fallen branches

This poor tree lost almost all of its branches in the high winds we had…

broken tree

…now it looks like it is pointing sadly at its old branches :-(

But I had to chuckle when the winds were blowing conkers off the trees…

conker

Hee hee, this conker hit @HeatherAlex when we walked through the woods!

It’s definitely a good time for squirrels in the park. I’ve run way more miles than @HeatherAlex has walked because I have been chasing after them. So I have done WAY more than 1000 miles, I’d say :-)  I will confess that I have been less than wonderful at coming back when I’m called away from squirrels. But what’s a red-blooded terrier s’posed to do??

Looking for squirrels

I know that there are squirrels hiding among the trees…

Twiglet on log

…but every so often, I stop for a wee breather after chasing the pesky squirrels…

I’ve met up with friends for some of my walks. Most Wednesday evenings, I walk in Pollok Park with one of my good buddies, Murphy. He’s great – he runs about mental and sometimes nearly knocks me over, but he’s very good at finding things to eat so I stick with him. And if we ask really nicely, we get some of the loveliest smelly fish treats you can imagine :-)

Twiglet and Murphy sitting

Are we being good or what??

In September, I had another of my good friends walking with me. He’s called Finzi. We go for weekend walks together a fair bit but one week his regular dog-walker wasn’t able to walk him on weekdays, so he came with us on our lunchtime walks. He had to stay on the lead though, in case he chased after the deer. But it was nice to have the company :-)

Twiglet & Finzi

Me an’ Finzi had some good walks together, even if he was on the lead…

One weekend, we were on our way to Mugdock Country Park, we came across a collie running in the road so I had to be very well-behaved and sit in the front seat, while @HeatherAlex and two other ladies tried to catch him. He had no lead or collar so we couldn’t phone his owner. Luckily we always have a spare lead and collar in the car, even if it was rather small for him! He was a bit reluctant to get in the car, but eventually he did (amazing what enough sausage can do) and one of the ladies came with us to hold me and help us find the police office.

Rescued dog

This is my reluctant anonymous friend…

Once we’d delivered him to the police office*, we carried on and went walking at Mugdock. I just love the river there and I have a favourite spot where I jump in after sticks (it’s the only place anyone’s allowed to throw sticks for me, for some reason). Just to be annoying, I always take the sticks back to the other side of the river, so @HeatherAlex has to have a good supply!

Twig in the river

SPLASH! I’m going to get that stick, even if I have to swim for it….

We did some of our 1000 miles back down in the Far South as well, visiting @HeatherAlex’s mum. I won’t put in lots of pics of Chobham Common, but here are a couple of my favourites:

Twiglet on the common

There’s something small’n’furry in the grass here, I just know it…

And one day I ran over a small snake. Didn’t think anything of it, to be honest, but when @HeatherAlex caught up with me, she realised it was a young adder and they are poisonous! Glad I didn’t sniff it too closely…

Adder in the grass

You have to look really closely, but there’s a very young snake in the grass here…

But finally we came to our Last Mile… We went with Jonathan, a friend of @HeatherAlex. They didn’t half talk, cos they hadn’t seen each other for a lot of years. But somehow they still had enough puff to get to the top!

Ben A'an

We’re about halfway up at this point, with most of the nasty muddy slippery bits out of the way

summit pic

At the top!! And 1000 miles done :-)

summit view

The view… I was off sniffing out wildlife at this point, I think!

Ben A'an

Ben A’an from the road home…a proper wee mountain!

So………we made it! One thousand miles later, paws tired, but very happy that we’re helping to keep wild land wild.

Twiglet on the sofa

A well-deserved rest after LOTS of miles *zzzzz*

If you’d like to help to protect wild land, then please do make a donation on our JustGiving page. You can also find out about the Trust – they do lots of great things, like the John Muir Award and arguing with governments and repairing paths and loads more. Maybe you’d like to join and add your voice to ours?

 

* PS the good news is that our collie pal was claimed that same day – seems he’d run off from a local farm and got a bit lost

The Big Walk in August

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Can you believe it? we’re actually writing about our month within a few days of the month ending :-)

It probably helps that we didn’t have so many pictures to sort through, partly because it was quite wet for a while and the camera doesn’t like rain any more than I do!

So August started off with me still at my home-from-home as @HeatherAlex was driving for the Commonwealth Games for a few more days. No sooner was I back in my proper home than we set off for a couple of days on Arran with family. We did walk a few times on the beach at Whiting Bay as part of our Big Walk, but I don’t have any pictures of that so here’s one of me in the boat….

Twiglet on boat

Nice views but definitely chilly *brrrrr*

There’s a bit of a theme to this month’s tales from the Big Walk, which is Things We Find On Our Walks.

You might remember from last month that I found a new friend in Queens Park, a big wooden version of the Games mascot, Clyde (the Thistle). Well, this month someone very kindly donated him some traffic cones:

Clyde - Games mascot

Someone gave Clyde a hat (or two!)

If you don’t know Glasgow, you might not realise that putting traffic cones on statues has quite a history here. There’s a statue of the Duke of Wellington outside the Gallery of Modern Art and he almost always has a cone on his head, put there by happy people in the city centre. During the Games, he even had a special golden cone to celebrate all the gold medals that Scotland won. Then after the Games, someone decided that his horse looked unhappy without his very own cone…

Duke of Wellington, Glasgow

In the city, the Duke always wears a cone…and his horse has one as well now!

Back on our walk, on our first walk back in Pollok Park, the Things We Found were some VERY strange objects:

film set pollok park

I don’t think it would be very nice staying in one of these…it looks a bit draughty

film set pollok park

Less draughty, but not much of a view from inside this one :-(

It turned out that they were there using the North Wood as a location for a TV series (called Outlander).

film set pollok park

It was great fun sniffing round it all…

Later in the month, we were walking along part of the West Highland Way by Craigallian Loch. We decided to stop by the Craigallian Fire for a snack. Well, boy, was I in luck! The Thing We Found was very tasty. Someone had obviously had a large cheese there and cut off lots of the rind AND LEFT IT THERE by a tree just for me :-) I headed straight for it and was happily chomping it, till I felt a hand on my collar. Dag nab it, I had to leave it there and was tied to a tree while the cheese was gathered up (and was later put in a bin – such a waste!).

tied to a tree

Still licking my lips – it was yummy!

But our best Thing We Found was the family of hidden foxes at Loch Ard. They are part of the Loch Ard Sculpture Trail, which is a very pretty walk through some forests and by a loch or two. I put a  picture of the fighting squirrels in last month’s blog. But the walk description on the Walk Highlands website said there were foxes hidden in the woods and we’ve never seen them, despite looking very hard every time we go. Mind you, it also says the eagle is golden and it is definitely silver!

But this time we went with someone who knew where they were… I still think they are very hard to spot in among the trees if you don’t know where to look. Look very carefully…

loch ard sculpture trail

Wheeee, I finally found the foxes! (there are 3)

loch ard sculpture trail

The silver eagle is on the post sticking up

We also had some beautiful views on that walk…

Loch Ard view

Still waters at Loch Ard…till I jumped in :-)

Other than discovering cones, wagons, cheese and hidden foxes, most of our walks were in our usual parks, where I can chase balls, hunt squirrels, run through the long grass and splash in the river (I’m not allowed in many of the ponds just now because of something called blue-green algae).

pollok park north wood

I’m sure I heard a squirrel in those trees…

grass against sky

This is the view I get when I’m running through the long grass…

Despite not walking for the whole month, we did notch up 100 more miles on our Big Walk. By the end of August, we had covered 857 miles in total so we are definitely making progress towards our goal of a thousand miles. Those of you who are waiting to see if we do the whole distance can start looking out those credit cards now! ;-)  If you’d like to help protect the wild land we love walking in, you can do that on our JustGiving page – thanks!

The Big Walk in June & July

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The astute among you will notice that I’m writing about 2 months in one go here. Yes, I know, it’s cheating but honestly I have some great excuses. For a start, June was mega-busy. We were on holiday at the start (I mentioned that at the end of my May blog) so I had LOTS of pictures to sort through from that week, and then we were away again at the end of the month, visiting @HeatherAlex’s mum down in the Far South, so we had even more pictures. And then July…well, July was a very different month because I really didn’t see much of @HeatherAlex at all. I did LOTS of walking with my friends at Tails, but of course those walks don’t count for this Big Walk, because it has to be both of us walking.

Anyway, here goes with our Big Walk in June and July…

You’ll remember from May that we headed to the south of Scotland to a place called Newton Stewart to stay for a week, and we had a couple of good friends stay with us as well, which was great because they play with me too and throw the ball so it is double the fun (at least!). This is our friend Linda looking at waterfalls when she could be helping me chase squirrels…

woods wander

Waterfalls are nice, but I prefer sniffing out the wildlife :-)

And this is our friend Ally, helping us to conquer the mountain (errm, hill) behind our cottage.

Cairnsmore of Fleet

On the very top of Cairnsmore of Fleet

We were staying near the Galloway Forest Park. It’s a great place with loads of walks, because it is quite a big park! And it has been there for over 60 years, which is a very long time – it’s even older than @HeatherAlex…  *chuckle*

Galloway F P 50th cairn

This is the cairn celebrating 50 years of the park (I’m behind it!)

The forest park has lots of trees, lochs and hills, so of course, most of my pictures are of trees, lochs and hills :-)

Loch Bruntis

Our local loch near our cottage by Kirroughtree – bit chilly for a dip tho!

Loch Trool

Lovely and misty by Loch Trool

Loch Trool - east

This is at the other end of Loch Trool…

otter look-out

There were s’posed to be otters here but I couldn’t sniff or see any :-(

Loch Bruntis

Loch Bruntis again (the local loch)

Loch View trail

This was on a walk called “Loch View” – this was the ONLY spot with a view!

Some of the walks had things we weren’t expecting to find…

"The Eye" at the Black Loch

This is called “The Eye” at the Black Loch…

You can look through a tiny hole in it…

looking thru the eye

Well, you can look through it if you are tall enough (I wasn’t!)

And there was wild life of a sort too:

carving of deer head

I spotted this in one of the woods – didn’t smell much like a deer tho!

There weren’t just deer heads – we also saw some people heads on one of our walks – they looked very uncomfortable!

stone carving of head

A lonely head on top of a wall.. how odd…

stone carvings

These 3 were guarding a hole in the wall…still very odd!

We found some great places to eat or get a coffee – I especially liked the ones where they let me in! The Galloway Arms in Newton Stewart let me in the bar area (where you can eat). The Belted Galloway cafe at the car park in town (owned by the same people) is terrific too – they gave me a dog biscuit or three – yum! And they have the most accurate weather forecast tool I’ve ever seen, much better than those apps you get on phones ;-)

sign at the belted galloway

It’s *always* right!

So that covers the holiday at the start of June. I’m going to skip through the rest of June a bit, mostly because you have already seen pictures of the local parks, the Whangie and Loch Ard, because they are our favourite walking places. I can’t resist showing you my favourite bit by Loch Ard though:

sculpture trail - squirrels

Can you guess why I like this part of the forest?? Look closely at the trees…

At the end of June we headed even further south to visit @HeatherAlex’s mum. You’ve seen lots of photos of Chobham Common so I won’t put many here. This is one of my favourites, because I just *love* this pond for plashing and jumping in:

chobham common pond

Look how far I can jump! (good practice for agility long jump)

While we were there, the walking shoes completely shredded themselves and new ones had to be bought:

old and new shoes

Just remember…I walked all those miles on my PAWS!!!

On the way home, we visited Lincolnshire for a wedding, so we went exploring and found a pond for me to splash in (it’s in Twigmoor Woods, so it was VERY appropriate for me to walk there!).

pond in Twigmoor Woods

Lovely on the paws…

Back home for July and we squeezed in some walks in our favourite parks…

Rouken Glen

Hiding in the grass at Rouken Glen…

Pollok House gardens

Hiding in the maze at Pollok House gardens…

Boardwalk at Mugdock Park

Back on the boardwalk at Mugdock…

with Briso at Rouken Glen

Playing Fetch with my pal Briso at Rouken Glen

Reaching at Pollok pond

Just…can’t…quite…reach…that…darn…stick!

And finally… looks like I have a new playmate at Queens’ Park – this is Clyde, the mascot of the Commonwealth Games which were held here in Glasgow over 11 days in July and August.

Clyde at Queens Park

Errm, he’s quite a tall thistle, isn’t he??

So that’s a quick scurry through my walks in June and July. We clocked up 129 more miles in June, and a measly 67 in July. But we had reached the grand total of 757 by the end of July, which is pretty good going as it means we are three-quarters of our walk to our target of 1000 miles. As ever, if you’d like to sponsor me and help the John Muir Trust to keep wild land wild, you can donate here.

Thanks for reading!

PS In case you’re wondering if my typist/best friend/walking buddy had gone off on holiday without me, nope, she was being a Clyde-sider for the Commonwealth Games. She had a wonderful time, she says (even though I wasn’t around, so I do find that hard to believe), and drove some very smart-looking cars around Glasgow with Games people in them. I’ve decided to let her put ONE picture here to show what she was doing…

collage of cars

These are the sports logos from the car she drove each day…and the uniform is quite smart too!

The Big Walk in May

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You would think that – since we reached a significant milestone in our walk in May – that this blog would be published on time, wouldn’t you? Well, don’t blame me, blame the typist! Anyway, better late than never so here goes…

May was exciting for lots of reasons… We went to some new parks, visited our first agility show, met one of my Twitter friends and went on holiday in the far south of Scotland for the first time. AND….we reached our halfway mark on the Big Walk!! Yep, we reached 500 miles on May 17th, as part of the 101 miles we walked this month. So if you’ve not sponsored me yet, maybe you’d like to do that now that we are over halfway???? It’s all in a good cause, trying to keep land wild for us and our people to walk on and enjoy in years to come. Thank you! And whether you do sponsor us or not, I hope you enjoy reading the tales of our walks :-)

One of the best things about our Big Walk is meeting up with pals who come with us. And it’s even better when it’s a new pal (or in this case, TWO new anipals and a new human pal). Me ‘n’ @RohanTheBT are friends on Twitter but we’d never met till this walk. Mr Mike brought Rohan and his sisfur Poppy on holiday to Scotland in May, and we joined them in Killin for a forest walk above the town.

terriers in Killin

We be three terriers having fun!

Afterwards we went for a drink at a dog-friendly pub called the Falls of Dochart Inn, where we all behaved very well – most of the time anyway – and we even got titbits from the couple who shared our table! We dogs that is, our humans didn’t get anything for free and had to buy their own drinks.

Killin pub

Someone’s very focussed on the sausages…

If anyone is looking for dog-friendly places, I can recommend the Inn. And I saw this sign in a cafe window in Killin, which I thought was very good:

cafe window

Yay, another dog-friendly place to visit, assuming our people are allowed in ;-)

We had some more forest walks in May, and again with friends. I have been out with this group before – they are called “Refresh”. I think it’s because they like refreshments after our walk, like beer and wine and ice creams and coffee and food. All I get is water and a small chew! Anyway, they are good friends so it is great to meet up with them for a walk. We went to Mugdock Woods with Marian first…

Marian behind tree

I can see you hiding behind that tree!

…then later in the month all of us went to walk in the forest at Aberfoyle. We had a great walk, with a waterfall and trees and sculptures and a bouncy ball and – of course – refreshments :-)

aberfoyle forest

Can you see the sculptures of people among the trees?

sculpture in woods

A very odd sort of a tree, this one

 

I do love playing in running water...

I do love playing in running water…

…ending up at the dog-friendly Forth Inn in Aberfoyle:

at the hotel for lunch

Refreshments for Refresh (and me!)

We went to some new places in May too. @HeatherAlex is going to be a volunteer driver for the Commonwealth Games when they come to Glasgow in July, and one of the event venues is Cathkin Braes where people will be riding mountain bikes very fast. So we went to find out where it was and have a walk there.

Cathkin Braes sign

You do have to watch out for speeding bikes in this park…

I even found myself a new trig point for my Twig-at-trigs collection:

from the Braes

There are good views out over Glasgow from here too..

The other new country park we went to was Eglinton Country Park in North Ayrshire. There was an agility competition there, and @HeatherAlex was helping out a bit, picking poles up if they were knocked down. But once she had done that, and I had a look at all the dogs competing, we went for a bit of an explore…

castle at Eglinton

There’s a ruined castle with lots of room to play fetch-the-ball…

eglinton park

…and a riverbank to explore as well

We did also go away on holiday in May – twice!

The first time, we visited Arran where @HeatherAlex’s brother and family were staying. We did lots of walking on the beach with people and dogs (Dylan the BT, and Samba the Lab).

on the beach

PLEASE…throw that ball!

I do love the beach…

sitting at the beach

I don’t want to go home, can’t we stay longer? pretty please?

at the pier

We had some lovely evening walks…

Our second holiday was to Newton Stewart, but most of that was in June, so I’ll tell you all about that in our June blog. We did do one walk in May, though, by the river that runs through the town so here’s me and our good friend Linda having a well-earned rest on our walk:

seat

Just big enough for me and Linda…

For the rest of the month, we went to our usual parks in and around Glasgow. So here’s a selection of some of the best bits:

Cherry blossom in Queens Park

Cherry blossom confetti in Queens Park

Pollok collage

Spring flowers at Pollok – blooming lovely :-)

pollok north wood

The woods are steaming! Pollok North Wood after rain

rouken glen park

My ball’s in the stream! at Rouken Glen

Now, this Big Walk is all about walking with ME! It’s a thousand miles with me so it doesn’t count if @HeatherAlex goes for a walk by herself. She went to Dunbar in May for a Gathering of members of the John Muir Trust, and left me behind (at my favourite home-from-home, it has to be said). She wanted to include a picture or three from that trip (mostly cos she used her fancy new camera for most of them), but I was very firm.

“If I wasn’t there, it doesn’t count, and you can’t have a picture on the blog”, says I. “Who has all your yummy treats and food?”, says she. So we compromised.  It’s not a walk picture but one of the statue of John Muir as a young lad before he left for America. After all, we are raising money for the Trust that bears his name, so it is ok really :-)

John Muir statue

John Muir as a young lad – I think I would have liked him

So that’s our tales from the trails for May. Hopefully our June blog will be done soon too! Till then…happy walking!

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