Monday, January 30, 2012

Glenkiln Sculpture Walk - Part 2

Rob and I completed the second part of the Glenkiln Sculptures Walk today. It was a bright, frosty morning - perfect for walking. The walk is 2.5 - 3.5 miles, depending on where you start from.

The first sculpture you see is The King and Queen by Henry Moore. The figures sit on a hillside overlooking the Glenkiln Reservoir.

A mile or so further up the track and you come to this sculpture called 'Visitation' by Sir Jacob Epstein. The sculpture is set within a circle of scots pines and looked very eerie standing there in the mist with rays of sunlight breaking through the branches.

You follow the track through a couple of fields, before getting back to a small single-track road, which you follow round to the left, between hills full of sheep. Henry Moore's 'Two Piece Reclining Figure No. 1" sits to the right of the road. An interestingly abstract figure, which looked like it had male and female 'aspects'.

We stopped off, for our second visit, to Kilnford Barns Farm Shop and Restaurant on the way home, for lunch. The restaurant has a modern feel to it and the loos are very well fitted out and clean. The staff are polite, efficient and well-trained. We both had the 'delightfully' named, 'Meat Free Salad', which comprises mixed lettuce, tomato, and cucumber, plus your choice of three other salads. I went for the red cabbage and sultanas, char grilled vegetables and potato salad. Rob had a similar plateful. We shared a bottle of mineral water and both had a tray bake. Rob had a roll and butter. The bill came to £14.40. The food looked very good, but was a bit lacking in flavour (and protein - eggs, cheese or mixed beans would have been good). It was very cold and perhaps that was part of the reason. You get a choice of dressings and there looked to be about 8 or more varieties. I had the blue cheese.

Other choices on offer included:- sandwiches/toasted sandwiches; some meat dishes; and macaroni cheese. I would go back again, but it would be nice to have more vegetarian choices, such as baked potatoes, or vegetable curry, for example.

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Kilnford Barns Farm Shop and Restaurant

On Monday, Rob and I stopped off for lunch at the Kilnford Barns Farm Shop Cafe on the way back from our walk at Glenkiln.

The farm shop is just off the A75, and has a large car park. The shop has butchery and cheese counters, fresh fruit and vegetables, frozen, chilled and delicatessen goods. We bought some leeks, celeriac and other bits and pieces while we were there. The vegetables were very good value, and many are locally sourced. I made a big batch of vegetable and bean soup with some of them.

The cafe is bright and airy, with modern furnishing. We picked the vegetarian lunch from the grill, which was grilled halloumi and beetroot salad. We also had a cappuccino each (one large, one mug) and a tray bake each. The bill came to £20.90. The salad came with char grilled halloumi, beetroot wedges, beetroot leaves, red onion and a balsamic, blackcurrant and fig dressing. It was very tasty, especially the dressing. The only minor complaint would be that the halloumi had a rather burnt aroma, and personally, I would prefer it fried flat in a pan so that it heats up more and cooks more evenly. The coffee was good; the tray bake was fairly standard and a bit pricey.

This beautiful quilt was hanging on the wall near our table. It was made by Kate Henderson of Clarencefield, Dumfries.

We will definitely be glad to visit the restaurant and shop again. I will give the mixed salads bar a try next time: it looked very appetising!

Monday, January 16, 2012

Glenkiln Walk, Dumfriesshire

Today Rob and I went on a walk to Glenkiln in Dumfriesshire, Scotland. It is Walk 5a in the following book:-

It was another frosty, clear morning as we parked up near to the Glenkiln Reservoir to start the walk. This statue of John The Baptist by Auguste Rodin is right at the start.

A short walk along a single track road brings you to the second sculpture: Standing Figure by Henry Moore.

Shortly after seeing the second sculpture, you strike off the road and up a very steep hill towards Bishop Forest Hill. The photo below is taken from Cornlee Hill and shows the misty view over Glenkiln Reservoir.

The ground is extremely rough going in places, with hidden rocks and tussocks of grass and bracken, with marshy ground in the gaps. Here is Rob struggling through one of the worst patches!

A view of a remote house, photo taken from the hillside.

This beautiful black swan was floating silently on the reservoir as we came back to the car park.

The second walk in the area takes in four more sculptures and we know that it's a bit easier going, having done it in the past. We will probably try that one again in a week or two.

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Dodd Wood and Bassenthwaite Walk

Rob and I went on a walk on Monday. The walk is number four in the book shown below and is about three miles long. There is a car park at the start of the walk (costs £1.70 for 1.5 hours), with a cafe open in Spring/Summer.

The walks starts through conifer woodlands and you can just about see Bassenthwaite Lake through the trees to your left.

You cross a busy road next to a hotel and small hamlet, before striking out across some very muddy fields. We were glad that we were wearing waterproof walking boots! The highlight of the walk is coming onto a track which leads you to the remote St Bega's Church.

The church is very simple, but rather beautiful, with a calm, serene atmosphere. According to the guidebook, parts of the building date to the 12th and 13th centuries.

The walk curves back to the car park, passing Mirehouse (below), a large country house, built mainly in the 17th century. It was owned in the 19th century by the Spedding family, who entertained there, writers and poets such as Thomas Carlyle and Lord Tennyson.

It was a most enjoyable walk, followed by lunch at a pub in nearby Keswick.


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...