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Report on Irvine & Kilwinning New Town Trail
Sunday 13th February 2005

We met at 10am in the car park at the visitor's centre in Eglinton Park.  Anne, Mike, Caroline, Keith, John, myself and my dog Cairn were all set to walk this trail for a bit of exercise.  I hadn't walked this before and only had a rough map from the internet but luckily John knew where he was going.  There was a keen frost with a biting wind and the walkway was initially icy.

New Town Trail Group - without John who had gone shopping !!
Mike took off at a pace with Cairn challenging him for leadership!  Those two were ahead for the 12 miles of the walk and seemed to bond.  There were ample signposts until we reached Bourtreehill then nothing.  We were in that dilapidated concrete jungle and by chance found the trail again.  We passed behind Greenwood Academy in Dreghorn then crossed over Long Drive and the bypass then walked behind the Thistle Hotel.  We didn't think we would have been made welcome for a drink as we rather muddy and had this bedragled dog with us.

We stopped a couple of times for a hot drink and Cairn found our sandwiches much more tasty than his biscuits.  We continued along the Low Green and onto the Moor.  Just behind Ravenspark Hospital there was a deer bounding through the long grass.  We met a strange wee man carrying a huge doll that he had picked up from the council skips (maybe that's normal for Irvine). 

The worst bit of the trail was passing the skips and into Kilwinning passed the factories.  What a mess this is!  Surely if North Ayrshire Council are promoting this New Town Trail they should enforce it to be maintained and cleaned up.  Think I'll email them!  Stephen walked to meet us after his run so he got slagged off about becoming a rambler.

Back into Eglinton Park and poor wee Cairn started to slow down. I think his four legs were aching.  By this time the wind had died down and the sun was shining for a perfect end to the day.  We all went to the tearoom except John who went to Braehead (he must have been keen) and Cairn who had to be lifted into the boot of my car and lay down and slept.  Cairn spent the rest of the evening in his basket and whenever I mentioned the word "walk", he just ignored me.


Photo: Irene Cahill

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Mountaineering Council of Scotland
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