Over the sea to…Cumbrae.

With passports to the ready, four intrepid adventurers, Iain, Phil, Douglas and George, boarded the ferry at Largs for the first overseas venture of the year, setting foot on the foreign soil of the Great Cumbrae some ten minutes later.

The destination had not been in doubt, but confusion reigned as to what route was to be taken on our arrival, and serious placatory measures were required when some of the party realised that our route would not include a refreshment stop at the Fintry Bay café.

However, with reasonably good grace, it was agreed by all that we would be heading inland to scale the heights of this mountainous island. 

Striking off from the main highway and along a farm track brought us to our first hurdle. Well, the hurdle was easy enough, just a stile to climb over, but beyond that 100s of bovine beasts lay in wait.

With a fore and after guard and two wingmen, we bravely traversed through this threatening throng (to be fair they were some distance away, but even at a hundred paces the malevolence of a cow’s stare can be pretty intimidating) and swinging ourselves gracefully over a farm gate, continued on our route.

I’m sure it was just showing due caution, but the sight of Phil walking along with OS map in one hand and Google maps in the other, did suggest a certain lack of confidence in George’s route planning…….with some justification, as we exited the pastoral section of the walk, over or under a rickety gate, some distance from where we should have done.

Back on solid ground, we strode ever upwards to reach the summit of Great Cumbrae and the welcome sight of the Glaid Stone, some 417 feet above sea level. 

With pictures taken in the sunshine, and reluctant members extricated from the comfort of the convenient bench seat, it was down the hill towards the island’s metropolis. 

“We’ll be having a look at the Cathedral of the Isles” reminded Douglas (as per the itinerary). “Yes, that’s it over there with the spire” was our leader’s response. Churlish, but the lure of that lager-tops in the Pier Hotel was strong. 

And thus our destination was achieved, lager-tops (other beverages were available) were downed, accompanied by steak burgers and chips for three of us (excellent) and curry for one (so-so)

Our next walk is scheduled for Thursday June 6th; a coastal stroll from Ardrossan South Beach to Seamill.  If you haven’t tried one of our walks before, do give it a try.  They’re actually quite fun……

Largs Probus Club will next meet in the Willowbank Hotel on Wednesday 8th May at 10am when Chief Superintendent Faroque Hussain will speak on the Scottish Police Service.

Men over the age of 50 who are retired, or nearing retirement, can attend three meetings as a guest before deciding whether to become a Club member. Please use our Contact Form if you wish to attend as a guest, or to enquire about joining.