Expedition 111 - 1st May 2004
The Acharacle Observer Post

The best day of the year so far, and the first warm one. It was a holiday weekend and there was an event in Acharacle, but we still had thirteen explorers, seven helpers and two dogs, i.e. Alexander, Alexander D., Allan, Benjamin, Donald, Edward, Fionn, Jack MacM., James S., John Donaldson, Peter William, Rebecca, and Thomas; plus: Dot, John Dove, John Evans, Pamela, Peter, Philippa and Sandra with Brucie and Stan as the expedition dogs and wildlife spotters.

We drove to the EFG Forest Car Park, which we pretty well filled, and carefully crossed the road and climbed up to the fence. We crossed the fence with the aid of a Spanish camel skin cover and carried on up to the Trig Point, the first stop for a talk and a breather. It was only a few yards across the hill to the old Observer Corps Post, which was used in WWII by local men. There was another talk with a photograph of the kind of German bomber the men once spotted.

Then we had a long, hot struggle across the moor to Lochan na Dubh Leitir, which we had seen from the big TV aerial on a previous trip. After refreshments, all of the explorers undertook a circumnavigation of the lochan finding, whirligig beetles, a leech, pond skaters, some tadpoles and a caddis fly larva. At the side of the lochan there were some tumbled rocks and we found a possible otter den among them.

We took a slightly different way back and Stan found a young hind and brought it back to see us, and then very obediently left it alone when told to do so, but we all got a very good view, particularly John Donaldson who was very close. Finally we got to the hills above the road and made our way back via the fence and the camel skin cover.

The Pictures

There were some very good pictures this time, but for Dé tha Dol? I picked out Edward's view of the lochan because it was the best for printing. It is very reduced in size and it shows the explorers along the shore, the hills behind and Stan swimming across, and it is really exactly what it looked like.
John Dye


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