Meet up at Stobo Kirk with walking companions, Lesley Morrison and Margaret Devlin. Stunning morning and walk past the wonderful cottage gardens leading to the John Buchan trail. We walk along, past Brian Pool’s bee hives and start climbing up into the hills. Pollaidh is able to go free with no lead and happily finds burns to stand in and cool down. This part of the John Buchan trail is lovely walking country – wonderful views in all directions taking us past woodland, ruined shieling cottage and out into the hills. Lesley comes with us till midday and we talk about her garden and wood projects, which are on the same wave length as the bee line.
After lunch by the Stobo Hope cottage, where there are the first midges we have experienced on the walk, we set off up the hill on the second stage of the walk. The weather is wonderful with magnificent cloud formations and hills in all directions. There is heather and wild flowers by the track and a few butterflies and bees flying.
As we go down hill we stop by the burn for everyone to cool their feet in fast flowing water before we set off towards Broughton Place where we meet up with Debs Stewartby our next walking companion with a wee terrier dog, Teasel.
She gives us a good account of the history of Broughton Place as well as of her grandfather, John Buchan’s association with the trail and the area. On the way down hill we sidetrack to look at a waterwheel construction on the side of a small burn flowing fast downhill, and meet with Bruce Fraser the maker and designer.
Another stop for tea and cake at Laurel Bank Tea rooms after looks at the wonderful flowers on the edge of the car park and in the garden opposite the tearoom. For bee friendliness we need to look for garden growers of the right kind.