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Posts Tagged ‘MM3YVQ’

With MM3YVQ in the Forest of Ae

Posted by gm4uls on June 13, 2016

As you know, I post an occasional update on my daughter Ruth, MM3YVQ, the third generation ham in our family. Our latest activity was a 20Km hike in the Forest of Ae, Dumfries and Galloway, on which I was photographer and bag-man. We hiked mainly on Forestry Enterprise tracks, but at one point climbed a twisty mountain-bike trail, making sure we didn’t get in the way of any mountain-bikers. It was a Tuesday and blazing hot, so thankfully there weren’t many about.

The point of the trek was to gather information for her MSc dissertation, which is to do with a project Glasgow University is undertaking for SEPA, the Scottish Environmental Protection Agency, all about sediment and channel-change in the Water of Ae, a river in southern Scotland. Ruth made many interesting and surprising observations about the upper reaches of the river and its upland tributaries, and hopes that these will inform her dissertation.

We went as far as the fairly new Array F of the Harestanes Wind Farm (see the picture below). We would have liked to go on to the source at the Pot of Ae – in fact we would have liked to climb Queensberry*, the nearby high spot, at 697m/2287ft – but we didn’t have enough time. The hike took over four hours on the outward journey, with stops to fix our position on GPS, make observations, and take photographs, and a forced march of two-and-a-half hours on the return leg.

2016-06-07 03a Ruth, Harestanes wind farm


As well as Ruth’s scientific observations, I did some wild-life spotting. It amazed me just how far into the upland area I could hear the spring call of chaffinches. They were everywhere and in great numbers. I wouldn’t have expected to hear the spring call this far into summer. We also spotted a slow worm by the trackside. This fascinating creature looks like a snake, but is in fact a legless lizard. This is the first time that either of us had ever seen one.

2016-06-07 05 slow worm.png


The Water of Ae is a very beautiful little river, particularly in the stretch between Ae Village and the footbridge above Dan’s Pool. Minor roads beyond Ae Village take you to tributaries such as Capel Water, and to little places that tourists seldom visit. It’s a lovely part of the country.

2016-06-08 03a NX96182-96365 Caperl Water (trib) conf w Garroch Water (sub-trib)

The confluence of Capel Water, a tributary of the Water of Ae, and Garroch Water, with Queensberry in the distance topped with cloud. ©GM4ULS

*For those of you are interested, Queensberry is a ‘Marilyn’, a ‘Donald’, and a ‘Graham’. 🙂

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