Monday, 30 March 2009

Changing Weather at Bluefolds, Glenlivet and Cairngorm

On Saturday, my cousin, Jennifer was to help us with the painting in Glenlivet cottage. The first problem was that there was about 6" of snow on the road to the cottages and we had to abandon the car at the farm about 1/2 a mile from the cottages. You could think that we struggled through the snow - but we waited until Steve arrived with the girls who were doing the cottage turn rounds! I know it is cheating, but it meant we were fit to get on with the painting. The weather remained snowy with some heavy showers which let to Jennifer being able to sledge on a run behind the cottages. She loved it!
On Sunday after all our labours over the last few days, we went for a typical day out from Glenlivet starting with a visit to Drumin Castle (Lair of the Wolf of Badenoch in an earlier time), the views to the River Livet and River Avon are lovely and it was easy to see why he chose this spot with panoramic views. The castle has been made safe by the Crown Estate, Glenlivet. There is also a lovely walled garden and the daffodils will be in bloom in another week. We drove past the Glenlivet distillery which is currently being renovated and along a little side road which gave views back to the distillery and Ben Rinnes still with a cap of snow and on towards the Ladder Hills and Tomintoul. Ben Avon (pronounced A'an) was still looking very snowy and it would be a good day for sking at the Lecht. We stopped for hot chocolate and cake at the coffee shop in the Whisky Castle. Both were delicious and it was good to see that there were quite a few shoppers visiting on a Sunday. Kathy stocks a wide range of goods and Jennifer found some warm hats which were put to good use later. It was a beautiful sunny day until we reached Cairngorm for a trip in the funicular! Everything changed as we approached, the wind increased in speed and soon we were in a mini blizzard. As is the usual case in Scotland, if only we had been there 2 hours earlier! The trip up the mountain was wonderful and we braved the outside for a few very cold minutes to get some photos. It was hard to believe the change in temperature from Tomintoul to Cairngorm. We were amazed at the number of people sking, although we knew earlier in the day the car park had been full, as we could see the spaces where cars had left. We caught the last train down the mountain at 1620. We passed many skiers in the blizzard still making there way down the slopes as well. We drove back to Glenlivet via Carrbridge. The bridge was looking beautiful in the evening light and the river was very full. As we drove back to the Grantown road we saw that the blizzard had passed and the mountains in the Cairngorm range were once again looking wonderful with their snow caps. We crossed back across the River Spey at Grantown and drove along enjoying the light shining on it. There were quite a few weekend drivers around so it was fine to enjoy the trees, river, light and beautiful skies. It had been a wonderful day out, we were ready for our supper and nice refreshing glass of wine.

Friday, 27 March 2009

Visit to Lossiemouth Beach from Bluefolds Holiday Cottages

The weather in this area never fails to amaze me as we go from several feet of snow to brilliant blue skies and sunshine. The weather was outstanding for a second day running and I just had to go to Lossiemouth. Since then there have been few days off to enjoy the lovely weather, as we have been cleaning and painting the holiday cottages ready for Easter. We still have some availablility between 28 March and 18 April. Have a look on our website for discounts.

Monday, 16 March 2009

Trip to Findhorn

An afternoon off from work at the holiday cottages. It was raining in the morning, but by the afternoon the sun had come out and my friend, Paddy and I decided to visit Findhorn for a stroll along the beach. It was a windy, cold day, but beautiful as we wandered along the beach. The tide was on its way out so it was ideal for a long walk with lots of looking in rock pools, admiring stones of every shape and size; looking for shells and just generally enjoying being out it the fresh air on a breezy March day. We felt great after inhaling great lungfuls of sea air. Just proves you don't need to wait for summer to visit a beach!

Wednesday, 11 March 2009

Winter snow and sunshine - mountains and castles

On Friday last week, when I was on the way to do spring cleaning at the holiday cottages in Glenlivet, I was sidetracked by sunshine and snow and had to stop and take some photos on my route past Drumin castle, the Glenlivet distillery and Blairfindy castle. When I was stopped, I had a beautiful view of a buzzard overhead with the sun shining on it's wings. Unfortunately, the photo I took is now very sharp - not a high enough shutter speed! As Ben Avon and the Cairngorm mountains were looking wonderful in the sunshine, I had to stop work to go out and take some more photos - the advantage of being my own boss! It always amazes me, even although I have lived in this area for 10 years, how many days in winter we get glorious sunshine whether combined with snow or frost! A friend, Paddy, arrived on Sunday for a short holiday with us. The weather had taken a turn for the worse with rain and high winds, but Paddy loves wind so we were not daunted and had a lovely walk beside the river Livet and saw 2 little dippers, bobbing on rocks in the river which quite captivated us. We also saw banks of snowdrops telling us that spring is really on the way.