Our final day was to be a climb up and over Tinto Hill, roughly a 7km walk with a 500m ascent. This lovely rounded hill is the backdrop to our comings and goings here at Wiston. There is a poem that you might recognise if you have visited us here at the lodge.
On Tintock tap there is a mist,
And in the mist there is a cist,
And in the cist there is a cup,
And in the cup there is a drap,
Tak' up the cup, drink aff the drap,
And set the cup on Tintock tap.
It was a cloudy morning as we loaded the van one last time with rucksacks, packed lunches and boots before heading off to the Tinto Tea Rooms Car Park where we would meet Margaret ( The 4th Human Beeliner) and begin our climb. The journey there was interrupted by the hint of a Rainbow. By the time I had jumped out of the van, a hint was all I could photograph. Shame.
Margaret was waiting for us at the car park and we kitted up and headed off into the mist and rain.Wet is what it was and stopping to add more layers we were taken aback by a beautiful sight. The Rainbow had returned and this time it was bright and beautiful. A blessing on the Beeline walkers.
I never cease to be astonished by the magic of Rainbows and this was a spectacular example. Of course I needed to compose a Beeline shot.
I took a lot of Rainbow photos. A lot. Here is just one more of my favourites.
We continued to climb into the mist and at the point where we started the summit push we were offered another window of light and I snapped a couple of walkers we had just passed and chatted with.
A little further up the hill I shot this wee beauty. Ewan as you have never seen him before.
Minutes later this was Ewan.
Meg was discovering her waterproof jacket was nothing of the sort and for the first time on the walk she looked tired and cold. Stoic is her middle name however and she pushed on.
The wind was battering us now but we could glimpse the summit through the mist. Leaning into the gale the Bee-liner’s trudged forwards. Almost there!
Then we were there. The summit. Hurray!
Extra layers and gloves added for warmth, lunch was eaten in a wee cairn circle and we were off again in no time at all. Far to cold for sitting aboot!
Down we headed, the steeper side of the hill, so care needed to be taken. Dropping through the clag, we started to get views of the Wiston side of Tinto Hill as well as a wee high flying pollinator. I actually had a Bumble Bee whizz past me at this point heading right for Wallace’s seat. Too fast to photo but in honour of his altitude and tenacity we named him Bee-Heart 😉
Sunshine was now falling upon this sodden bunch and we were grateful for it. Pollaidh had spotted someone coming towards us up the hill. An advance welcome party in the form of Ronni, a volunteer gardener from the Lodge. Well met.
We walked a little together and then stopped for a moment at the Life Cairn on the hillside. A little cairn housekeeping and a sit to contemplate the connections being made and were were off walking again.
A final sighting that Meg wished to be recorded as we made our way to the down-slopes of Tinto Hill. A good omen she insisted. How lucky we were today. Rainbows to start with Puffball’s to end.
We arrived at the edges of the Wiston Lodge estate and our footfall was heard on familiar ground. Pete McIntyre, our outdoor program coordinator, greeted us as we approached the lodge and walked the last few steps with us.
Cups of tea were had and other folk came out to congratulate us on the completion of our Beeline. Then a bit of solitary time for the walkers, and a nap or two I suspect, before we gathered again to light a fire and sing a few songs and chat about the journey.
And that folks is that. Except that it’s not is it? The Beeline was for a purpose and that purpose is still in front of us. In front of you.
For me this is a beginning. A deeper realisation that everything is connected and that how we go about our living our lives is so important. Every tug on the web of life has an impact.
I want to continue this blog as I move forward into this new consciousness and write about issues that are relevant.
We, the Beeline team, have all kinds of ideas that have sprouted from the fertile soil of our time on the road and so there will be more to come, not least the ‘Human Bee In’ here at the Lodge over the Easter weekend of 2017.
So for now let me just say this.
Hasta La Beesta Baby 😉