Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Outerwards Reservoir

A few scenes from beside this small reservoir in Brisbane Glen a few miles inland from Largs along the lovely road to Loch Thom. Noddsdale Water flows from here into Largs Bay.

Below, looking south - you can just see the Clyde in the distance

Outerwards Reservoir

Looking north into the Clyde Muirshiel Regional Park

Friday, November 21, 2008

Gryfe Reservoir

A collection of photos of the larger of the two reservoirs of the same name, which were completed in 1872 (after the others in the group). They are found to the east of Loch Thom - I shall reproduce the same map from my previous post which shows all the reservoirs in this area. All photos were taken from the road along the south bank in October 2008.

The small island in the reservoir, close to its western end

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Compensation Reservoir

You can see this Inverclyde reservoir in the map above (click to see a larger size), to the west of Loch Thom. In October we walked up the long western side of the reservoir to the dam at the top, where the waters of Loch Thom feed from its north-western end into the reservoir below. It was a raining for much of the time so not the best conditions for photography yet again!

Looking towards the narrowest point of the reservoir

ItalicLoch Thom Cottage standing alone at the top of the reservoir, half hidden in the trees (and some blue sky making an appearance for a very short while!)

One of the muddy paths we followed, looking back towards Cornalees, where we started out

At the north end of the reservoir, showing the channel which carries the water down from Loch Thom. On the left (above) you can just see the two pillars shown below:

Rather corroded and difficult to read in parts, but it was good to see something there in recognition of Robert Thom who designed the whole scheme back in the 19th century

Edward Wilson (I can't find out anything about him but I'm still searching)

The walls of the channel with a small footbridge over the top...

...and Geoffrey sheltering from the rain underneath while I went off with the camera!

The small dam at the top of the reservoir. The video below shows the top end of Loch Thom. Once again it was difficult to hold the camera steady in the strong winds up there that day!

Monday, November 17, 2008

Loch Thom

The largest of a beautiful group of reservoirs in Inverclyde, now forming part of the Clyde Muirshiel Regional Park, and named after the civil engineer Robert Thom (1774 - 1847). He designed the scheme which created the reservoir and has provided Greenock with water from 1827 to the present day! On a personal level, this whole area fills me with memories as I used to come up here from Greenock many a time in my teenage years - I learnt to drive on the country roads around Loch Thom too.

An old map showing the position of the reservoirs. Of course, for years there has been a network of minor roads around the banks.

Below: some of my photos from October 2008, taken from the most southerly point of Loch Thom, looking north:

Geoffrey soaking up the atmosphere
(we were soaked by heavy rain a little earlier - the weather was very changeable)

The road and bridge over the southern tip of Loch Thom

(I shall include a short video showing the north end in my next blog!)

Evening drawing on and the light beginning to go

An interesting (Wikipedia) page about Loch Thom is found here


"Just for the sake of recovering
I walked back from forty-six
Quick years of age wanting to see,
And managed not to trip or stumble
To find Loch Thom and turned round
To see the stretch of my childhood
Before me. Here is the loch. The same
Long-beaked cry curls across
The heather-edges of the water held
Between the hills a boyhood's walk
Up from Greenock. It is the morning.

And I am here with my mammy's
Bramble jam scones in my pocket.
The Firth is miles and I have come
Back to find Loch Thom maybe
In this light does not recognize me.

This is a lonely freshwater loch.
No farms on the edge. Only
Heather grouse-moor stretching
Down to Greenock
Or stretching away across
Into the blue moors of Ayrshire."

Part of the poem, "Loch Thom" by W. S. Graham
(More about him here)

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Largs Pier

Some photos, from October 2008, of the pier in Largs - which I shall never see again! This is because it is being replaced with a brand new one over the next few months...

For more information, see here

Update (December 2008) :

Unexploded Bomb found under Pier!

(Thanks to Gerry for alerting me to this article)

Sunday, November 9, 2008

Largs: Pencil Walk

One of our favourite walks is from the centre of Largs to the Pencil Monument and Marina and back. This tall tower was built in 1912 to commemorate the Battle of Largs in 1263. As it looks like a pencil from a distance the name has stuck! It's a mystery to me that I don't remember it from frequent visits to Largs as a child. It was either because we just used to go to the beach on the other side of Largs or to Nardini's for ice cream, or because it wasn't so accessible or seen from the southern road (though this is unlikely, given the height of it!) Here are some of my photos taken one afternoon this October (apart from the first one which is from a different visit to Largs). The light was beginning to fail so some of the later ones are a bit dark:

Below: the Glasgow train going past some of the expensive new houses overlooking the monument!

It's essential to have coffee and cakes before the walk back to Largs!

The cafe at the Marina is quite good...

...some shots taken on the way back:

Below: the Coalpit Burn which runs down from the Haylie Reservoir, flowing into the Clyde.

Below: the path leading back to the town

There are some superb aerial views of the monument here and Wikipedia goes into detail about the Battle of Largs here