Chillin’ in Contin


This month, we had a bit of an adventure. Normally, when we go on holiday, we rent a dog-friendly cottage in an interesting place with lots of walks and fur-friendly places to visit. This time, it was a bit different. No cottage for us – we rented a campervan instead. It was from Big Tree Campervans near Perth who have a fur-friendly campervan.


Our van! (it’s called Alder)

Simon from Big Tree was very helpful and kind to us newbie campervanners and showed us how everything worked. Well, actually he showed @HeatherAlex while I ran off and explored their garden🙂

The van was bigger than I thought it would be. Lots of room for all our stuff (I need lots and lots of my favourite things when we go away!) and a kitchen and cupboards and a seat that turns round and a clever bed that folds out. Oh, and another bed in the roof – that was VERY clever – not that I was allowed up there in case I fell through the hole in the ceiling.

Twiglet on seat

But it’s rather a long way up here…

Now the first thing I noticed when we drove off was that @HeatherAlex was a lot further away from me than she is in a car. I was a bit lonely all the way back there on the seat, so I tried jumping off it a few times, until I was told very firmly to stay put and the harness safety lead was shortened so I didn’t have much choice😦

We drove for quite a bit, with a visit to a place called Ralia for lunch, a quick walk and checking of pee-mail, and finally we ended up in a wee village not far from Inverness called Contin, at the Riverside campsite.

Roverside sign

Our home-from-home for 3 days…

Guess why it’s called that?

riverside pic

Yep, there’s a river at the end of the site🙂

Once we’d parked up, it was time to put the roof up because someone kept bumping her head😉 During the day, we could fold up the bed platform so it was out of the way.

van with roof up

There’s a bed in that roof!

If I’m being completely honest, I wasn’t entirely sure about this campervanning malarkey. It probably didn’t help that the weather was cold and wet. I did point out that the previous week was lovely and sunny and would’ve been much better but that didn’t cheer anyone up for some reason. I had to be on a lead on the campsite, but I didn’t want to be in the van, so I sat outside for a bit getting wet.

Twiglet sitting outside

I *know* it’s raining but the van’s too small for the 2 of us!

Eventually, we went for a walk in the forest at Contin, which is handily just a few minutes’ walk away down the main road.

Contin forest sign

Time for a forest walk🙂

It wasn’t a very long walk though because I was a bit fed up and didn’t want to walk very far. Well, it was raining, after all! Life improved when our friend Ally arrived though, and we went for another walk in the wee wood across the road…

five-acre wood

All set for our big walk…

Actually, 5 acres isn’t very big at all so it only took us about 10 minutes to walk round the whole wood! I did have to stop and inspect a Giant Squirrel though.

wooden sculpture

It’s HUGE!!

So quite soon we were back at the van, and it was time to celebrate Ally’s big birthday.

birthday cake

Happy Birthday Ally!

I wasn’t allowed any of the chocolate cake (sigh) but I did get some special treats.

Twiglet getting a treat

Yummy, it’s chicken!

It was quite cosy in the van, and the heater worked very well (just as well as it was chilly outside). Bedtime was … interesting. Ally had to climb up into the roof-bed (that was quite fun to watch). We turned the seat into our bed but I was still not very happy about being dragged away from my home, smells, parks and pals, and I slept on the other side of the bed for most of the night just to show I wasn’t very pleased. Until I got too cold and started shivering, so I caved in and snuggled up to keep warm.

The next day we all went for a nice long forest walk. We started at Rogie Falls and worked our way almost all the way back to Contin then turned round and headed back to the car at Rogie.

Rogie falls suspension bridge

The bridge at the falls has gaps in it – I had to be careful where I put my paws!

Rogie Falls

The falls are quite impressive…

I was keeping an eye out for deer to chase, but the only deer we saw was carved on a signpost.


You’d think the signpost was pointing to where you’d find deer, wouldn’t you?

We found a great spot for lunch. Someone has built a shelter in the forest and it was big enough for us to sit and have lunch inside it, out of the showers.

wooden stick shelter

My own lunch place…

Well, to be honest, once the other two were inside, there wasn’t that much room for me!

Twig in the doorway

I need to fit in as well, you know!

We added in a detour up to a place in the middle of the forest called View Rock. I think on a sunny day, it would actually be a nice view…

view from the rock

…but the cloud was down and it’s a bit dreich!

We only got lost once. I didn’t mind as I got to scamper down and back up beside a lovely burn but the other two were muttering under their breath all the way back up the path. Actually it wasn’t really under their breath😉 All in all, though, it was a good walk, and we didn’t get too wet, which was a bonus.

Ally headed off to go to a concert after tea-time and so we had a quiet evening. I did deign to cosy up on the seat while @HeatherAlex was reading, but that was mostly because it was chilly!

On our last day, we decided to drive most of the way back to Perth in the morning and go visit a different wood at The Hermitage near Dunkeld. It’s owned by the National Trust for Scotland, but parking is free for us members.

sign for the woods

Hermitage Woods – lots of paths and a river as well…

We just did a short walk of about an hour, but there are much longer ones as well. We went round an interesting trail that had Ossian’s Hall and Ossian’s Cave on it. The Hall is quite small but has a great view of the river…

Ossian's Hall

I’m glad the bars were there – it was a long way down!

Ossian's cave interior

The cave has more interesting smells though!

I had to be dragged out though, cos I found some food in there (hee hee)

I had to be dragged out though, cos I found some food in there (hee hee)

On the way back to the van, we met loads of people in red and yellow suits and wetsuits, coming up the path. I think it was a rescue team going to practice rescues at the river. I’m glad they had wetsuits though because it was very wet and even more chilly by then!

Fire & Rescue service

They weren’t here to rescue me, honest!

That was the end of the adventure, because then we took the van back, and I snuggled into my usual spot in the car with some relief. Familiar territory at last! I fear that may not be the end of the story though, as I think we may try again in the future to see if I can be persuaded to enjoy it. We will see……..

A new path at Rouken Glen


They’ve been working on improvement projects at one of my favourite parks: Rouken Glen. There are new trees and a new fence (I can still get through it, phew!), but they have just opened the biggest project – a new path. Actually, I think it may be an old path as well, but in any case this week we went to explore it.

At one end of the glen walks, the end we usually go to, there are some steps. They’ve been there a long time, but they have had a makeover:

steps at Rooken Glen

Yes, those steps ARE squinty!

They go down at a funny angle, so the people going down find it a bit odd, but I just skip down them or run down the bank at the other side of the fence. Anyway, at the bottom, there’s now a new path going off to the right. We usually go left and down to the bridge over the water, but this time we decided to explore the new path.

new path at Rouken Glen

A new path to explore!

It all looks very new but there are some old foundations, metal rails, running under the new wooden path, so we think that maybe there was an old path there long ago. The new path has new foundations, but if you look back alongside it, you can see the old rails.

new path at Rouken Glen

Can you see the old path’s foundation?

After that section, we thought it was just going to be a normal path, but it looks like it would be very muddy walking, so they have built a brand-new boardwalk that goes for quite a way across to the bridge over the water.

new path at Rouken Glen

It’s all very new…

I quite liked the idea of exploring the muddy bits but I was asked not to, and as you know I’m very obedient (!) and decided I’d rather have the treats this time. Next time, who knows…?🙂

new path at Rouken Glen

There’s a bridge over the water too

There’s a mini waterfall here (there’s a much bigger one at the other end of the glen) but I couldn’t get down to the water.

The new path runs out just after this, but there’s still a track through the woods so we decided to see where it went. It turns out it goes to meet the paved track that runs alongside the golf course. There can be cars along there, and the golf course has no fence, so I was on the lead for a bit. Not so keen on that, to be honest, but it’s safer for me and the golf balls, I suppose. After a short walk, there was a signpost to go back into the park and the woods, so we did that and found ourselves at the bottom of the “puppy field” where we play Fetch. So I chased my ball lots and got very warm. For some reason, they’ve dug some big holes at the high part of the field, which was perfect for a nice muddy cooling dip.

puddle at Rouken Glen

Ahhh, a nice dip after all that walking!

@HeatherAlex wasn’t too happy with that, so I cheered her up by splashing around in the river later on and got rid of most of the mud🙂

I like the new walk but… with so much wood, there’s not a huge amount to sniff, and I don’t like having to be on the lead along the road, so I’m not sure if we’ll make it a regular part of our walks. It’s a nice path for people though, so I hope lots of them will find it and use it!

Lending a paw 2016


Every year, me ‘n’ @HeatherAlex try to do something to help raise money for something we support. In the past, we’ve walked for John Muir Trust (1000 miles) and Dogs’ Trust, because we love the outdoors and other dogs (of course!).

This year, we’re walking for a charity that helps women set up their own businesses so they can make their lives better. It’s called WEvolution, and it helps women by creating small communities of them who help and support each other while doing business.

Just for a change, we’re part of a team this year, from Scottish Women In Business (SWIB) – WEvolution was chosen to be SWIB’s charity of the year for 2016 – and we’re taking part in something called the 5×50 Challenge. There’s lots of different ways to take part in this, but all involve doing some exercise for 50 days. We’re doing the 30-minutes-a-day version instead of the classic 5km-a-day, partly because of my sore leg from March. But I think @HeatherAlex was worried about the days when I’m off to play with my friends at day-care and whether or not she’d get out and do 5km!

So far (today being April 6), we’ve walked nearly 46km and spent over 12 hours doing that.

If you would like to support our 50 days of exercise for WEvolution, it’s dead easy – just pop over to the team’s fundraising page to make a donation🙂

Thank you!

Queens Park through the year


Most mornings, me ‘n’ @HeatherAlex walk in our nearest park, Queens Park in Glasgow. It’s not quite like the open countryside or woods, but it’s VERY handy and can be very beautiful, especially in the morning.

sun thru trees

Lovely sunshine! … and lovely me as well, hiding in those shadows😉

Sun through the trees

In the autumn, you get lovely low light – just perfect for sneaking up on squirrels…

Anyway, last year, we thought we’d record a year in the park, mostly taken from one spot – the highest point, where the flag-pole stands – and looking over the city to the Campsies and even beyond (on a good day, you can see Ben Lomond!).

We had lots and lots of photos to choose from as we took one almost every weekend, and during the week too if there was some special weather. But I’ve chewed up the ones that were too much the same so you don’t get too bored🙂

Here we go…

View from the flagpole

Our first photo – mid January and the sun is just emerging🙂

Across a month, the weather can be very different. In March, for example…

View from the flagpole

A lovely crisp morning in March, perfect for snootering through the fence!

View from the flagpole

But on this March morning, we’d lost the hills completely…

And then in April…

view from QP flagpole

…it could be grey, with the hills hiding in the clouds…

View from the flagpole

…or it could be a lovely sunny morning, with the leaves starting to come on the trees

And again in May…

QP flagpole

After our May holiday, the park was looking lovely…

View from the flagpole

…but by the end of May, where were the hills??

June is usually lovely in Scotland, so I was hoping for lots of sunshine every morning🙂

View from the flagpole

If you peer closely, Ben Lomond might just be in sight (so I am told)

But it wasn’t like that every day, sadly…

View from the flagpole

It’s not exactly “flaming June”, more like “foggy June”😦

In fact, pretty much every month had some lovely days and some not-so-lovely days…

view from QP flagpole

This is early July, the grass has been cut and it’s a lovely day…

View from the flagpole

But by mid-July, it’s gloomy skies again. Still, at least it’s not raining (yet!)…

August was mixed too…

View from the flagpole

Streaky sunny skies on an August morning

View from the flagpole

Mid-August and everything is very green – because it just kept raining! (which is why the hills have disappeared!)

View from the flagpole

I just love walks in September sunshine!

View from the flagpole

Late September and the leaves are starting to change colour…

View from the flagpole

Not much of a view on a foggy October morning…

View from the flagpole

But here’s a glorious October day, perfect for morning snootering!

By November, it started getting a wee bit darker in the mornings, but we still had some nice days…

View from the flagpole

November sees trees undressing and putting their leaves on the ground #brrrr

View from the flagpole

A cold’n’clear November morning….

View from the flagpole

Brrrr, it’s freezing fog in December….

This was our last photo of the year, before we headed south for the Christmas holidays…

View from the flagpole

December mornings are dark in Scotland…why are we out this early??!?

One last thing… you’ll have seen that there are lots of trees in the park, and we even saved one of them last year! It was looking very poorly…

Toppled sapling

This poor tree had fallen over so we told the nice man at the park about it…

sapling staked

…and they made it all better and gave it a stake to hold it up (so we can leave pee-mail again!)

So that’s a skip through my morning walks in 2015 – hope you enjoyed seeing my park in all its different colours and weathers!🙂


December walkies


My New Year resolution for 2016 is to blog a bit more than I did last year, so here’s a round-up of some of the walks I did in December.

There are quite a few walks I can’t show you because some of them were VERY wet and @heatheralex didn’t have her waterproof camera with her. Truth be told, I didn’t want to hang about for pictures then either! December was a very wet month and I ended up with very wet fur quite a few times! #shakingallover

We finally went back to one of my favourite country parks, Mugdock, which is to the north of Glasgow. It’s not our nearest park so it’s a bit of a drive to go there but it’s worth it. Mugdock has a river and woods and a loch and an old penguin pond and a boardwalk and sheep and barbecue pits and TWO castles and a moor which is just perfect for chasing balls, so it is quite a special place.

Twiglet on boardwalk

Look how big my shadow is on the boardwalk!

The next day, me and my pal Finzi went to visit Loch Ard near Aberfoyle. It has a sculpture trail (with squirrel sculptures too!). The sculptures aren’t doing too well these days, though – the silvery eagle seems to have flown away… You can see what it used to look like in one of my Big Walk posts.

Locah Ard sculpture trail

The eagle has flown from its pole😦

It was a winter’s day, so me ‘n’ Finzi had a fine walk.

Twiglet & Finzi

Me & my pal Finzi, just pootling along and enjoying the sniffs…

Another great park is Rouken Glen. That’s a bit nearer so we go a bit more often. It has a nice river, which makes it really good in the summer when it’s hot, but I like it at any time.

Rouken Glen waterfall

All that rain means the waterfalls are very splashy!

It also has LOADS of squirrels…

Twiglet looking for squirrel

Drat, it just went up that tree…

Over the holidays, we headed south to visit @HeatherAlex’s mum, and various friends and family. When we’re there, we like to go to Chobham Common:

Monument @ CHobham

A lovely sunny day in the Far South!

There are lots of watery bits…

Twiglet at pond

Admiring my reflection – looking pretty good, I think!😉

Twiglet at hill pond

You can just see me…

Our last park walk for the year was at Pollok Country Park, my regular park. It was VERY wet, and there were loads of bits where I’d have had to swim where normally I could walk!

Floods at Pollok

Errm, we can’t get through this way today – I’m not swimming!

And now it’s a brand new year and we’ll be off on our walks again later today. I hope y’all have a fantastic year in 2016!


2015 in review

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Last year, Teagan Times introduced me to the WordPress annual report on my blog. Sad to say, this year’s report mainly highlights how little I have blogged this year😦

Thanks to all those who read my blog though – I promise to post more often in 2016!

Here’s the 2015 annual report for this blog.

Here’s an excerpt:

A San Francisco cable car holds 60 people. This blog was viewed about 390 times in 2015. If it were a cable car, it would take about 7 trips to carry that many people.

Click here to see the complete report.

Wandering in Wales (May 2015)


After Cornwall, our second week of holidays was in North Wales in a place called Caernarfon. It was MUCH bigger than where we stayed in Cornwall, and had a HUGE castle as well.

Caernarfon castle

It’s a very big castle but it’s not dog-friendly so we didn’t go in…

This week we had our good friend Carolyn staying with us for most of the week. I like snuggling up with Carolyn…

twig on seat

There’s just about enough room for both of us…

We used a different book to help us find good walks this week. It was very clear in all its instructions which made doing the walks straightforward.

guide book

Lots of good walks in here, but only a few were near where we stayed😦

We stayed in a nice dog-friendly house just on the outskirts of Caernarfon, with a park across the road for our early morning walks and a steam railway just below us! The only slight problem was the two (TWO) cats next door as I spent a lot of time trying to see them and chase them. There was a lovely conservatory with views into the garden so I could play Spot-The-Cats🙂

view to garden

No cats on view just now…

squirrel thru window


twig on sofa

…and sometimes it was nice to doze after a hard day’s walking


Our morning walks were in this lovely wee park…

Erw Goed

… and the house was right beside the railway line

There weren’t very many trains a day so it wasn’t too noisy, and in any case, I liked hearing the trains chuffing past every so often.

WHR engine

Here comes the steam train…they tooted when we waved🙂

We even took a trip on the train one day, just a short ride down to Dinas so we could walk back along the cycle path.

train tickets

I really like my special “Rover” ticket (and the people were third class!)

twiglet on train

I was mostly well-behaved…

WHR locomotive

This was our train when we got to Dinas – it’s quite big!

Then we had an easy walk back to the house along the cycle path. It was a very handy path as you could also walk into Caernarfon on it, and stay off the busy roads.

cycle path entrance

We walked into Caernarfon a fair number of times on the path…

Our first proper walk though was up a hill called Conwy Mountain. It was a great hill, but it was very windy that day – my ears kept blowing the wrong way!

path on Conwy Mountain

Ears flapping in the wind…

view of the hill

It was a lovely walk, even if it was on-lead (because of the sheep)

After our windy walk on the hill, it was time for lunch so we went into Conwy and found a great cafe where we could sit outside. @HeatherAlex had what sounded like “welsh rabbit”, which would obviously be delicious, but she told me it was mostly cheese, which is also delicious. I did get a few crumbs🙂

Conwy has a castle too, but we didn’t explore it. Instead we went for a walk across the suspension bridge and had a look at the tiny Toll House where people used to pay to cross the bridge.

COnwy castle

All these places have castles, it seems…

suspension bridge

…but I liked the bridge better

mussel statue

… and there was this pile of HUGE mussels by the harbour!

We needed to walk off our lunches, so we went to explore Aber Falls.

slate fence

First, we walked past some fences made out of thin stones called slates – very different to the stone walls I’m used to…

view to the falls

It was a great walk out to the falls, even if I did have to be on the lead…

welsh ponies

…because there were other animals about

Aber Falls

It was definitely worth the walk, and I had a great paddle in the stream below the falls

My people quite like woods and waterfalls, like me, so the next day we went off to find the Swallow Falls. We had to drive up a VERY narrow and steep road to get to the car park. It had nice views but I did NOT like the drive (I don’t think my people much liked the drive either).

view from car park

There were peacocks hollering in the distance too but I wasn’t allowed to chase them this holiday…

in the woods

…still, it was a really lovely woodland walk…

twig with a twig

I found some tasty sticks to chew…

Swallow Falls

…and the falls were impressive

We had taken a picnic lunch so we didn’t have to find a dog-friendly restaurant but we found one in Capel Curig anyway, just for a wee refreshment, as they say in Scotland. And then it was off to our afternoon walk at Cwm Idwal.

view of the mountains

It was a beautiful area but it was oh so windy!

cwm idwal

The lake (Llyn Idwal) has waves and spray from the wind…

My people could barely stand up in the gusts of winds (I was fine, being nearer the ground), so we didn’t finish the walk that was in the book, and hot-pawed it back down the path to the car!

It was nice and sunny the next day, though, so we went to find a nearby beach for a long walk and much chasing of the ball. DInas Dinlle has MILES of sand. Part of it is not for dogs though, so it’s best to park in the last car park as that is right by where dogs can be.

beach view

There’s a LOT of beach….

view of hills

…with great views …

seagulls on beach

… some seagulls for chasing …

twiglet chasing ball

… and of course, balls to chase too🙂

twig on beach

… I’m ready – you can throw it again now!

That afternoon, after lunch and some snoozes, we went to find Gelert’s Grave. It’s a sad story about a brave dog😦 There’s a statue to him as well as a tombstone.

Gelert statue

Not sure what he’d have made of the lamb, mind you

We had a good walk after that (another one from the book) and ended up at a cafe in Beddgelert having ice creams. Yum!

On our last day, me and @HeatherAlex were on our own and had to do packing and stuff (again!), so we went back to the beach at Dinas Dinlle for some ball chasing.

twig with ball

There’s no escape for this ball…

twig with ball

Here I come – throw it again!

And all too soon it was time to leave Wales. I had a great holiday with loads and loads of walks and ball chasing. Still, at least we were driving to a very special birthday celebration with the family, so we had that to look forward to.

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