Very shortly, I will be a participant in a unique adventure. Below is a description, kindly provided by Ruaridh Ormiston of Newtonmore Riding Stables, of what I am going to be doing along with approximately 25 other people who are passionate about learning in, through, with and about the land in which we live…
I was approached early this year by Joyce Gilbert of the SpeyGrian Educational Trust and asked if I could provide up to twelve Highland Ponies from Newtonmore Riding Centre for a trip they were planning. Of course, I immediately said that would not be a problem. The plan was for a one week trip travelling at a “drover’s speed” of 10-12 miles per day, camping outside, carrying all our own kit and food and grazing the ponies en route.
“are united in their love of outdoor learning and who set out to create journeys of exploration, both actual and metaphorical, to explore, through shared experience, abilities and possibilities, attitudes and aspirations, physical and spiritual skills, knowledge and understanding.”
We are trying to encourage people to come and talk to us en route, especially those who work on the land we are passing through. Before we set off we are going to have an “Induction” day at Ruthven for “the drovers” to meet and learn how to handle all the livestock. That evening of Saturday 3rd July many people with droving connections will come and join us at our campsite below the site of the old stronghold of the Comyn’s, the old Chief’s of Badenoch and Blair Atholl. Overnight camps are planned for near: Ruthven Barracks, Gaick Lodge, Bruar Lodge, Glen Banvie, Loch Moraig, Shinagag and Glen Brerachan. Dates are from 3rd to 11th July.
“a badly dressed little man, about 5ft 6ins in height, of thin make, with a sharp, hooked nose and lynx eyes. A man of great energy, he frequently rode night and day on a wiry pony, from Falkirk to Muir of Ord, 120 miles, carrying for himself some bread and cheese in his pocket and giving his pony now and again a bottle of porter.”
May your summer be filled with the adventures of life as well. As for this blog, silence is golden…