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Tuesday, 16 June 2009

Traprain Law and Home







Finally, Tuesday dawned damply and I was trapped inside the soggy lump I laughingly describe as a tent until, about eightish, I think, the sun came out and my besiegers, who had somehow got hold of a trebuchet, all slinked off to their midgie cellars. So I packed everything up and hurtled off to Tyndrum for an all-day-breakfast (9 till 11)
On the way home, I paid a brief visit to Traprain Law, which is just off the A1 near (ish) to Dunbar (might have set some speed cameras off on the A1 by the way (dhuhhhh)
Anyway, Traprain Law is a large volcanic plug sitting in some very lush farming country. As is the way with volcanic plugs, it has very steep and rocky sides.
These two things, and, probably, the fact that you can get a very nice view of a large slice of coast from the top, could well have been the reason why the local British tribe, the Votadini, chose it for a capital. These Votadini were allied to Rome and kept this fortress well into the 5th century, at which point, it would appear that they moved to Edinburgh – probably just that bigger rock and just that bit further away from the naughty Northumbrians. They weren’t particularly friendly with the folks over at Trimontium, as it happens (remember them?) I expect that when the roman men they go house, there could have been some friction with the chaps at Melrose…..
The legend of St Mungo who is linked to Traprain Law is here http://www.undiscoveredscotland.co.uk/usbiography/mno/saintmungo.html

Anyway, it’s a cracking place to fill half an hour if you’re going up or down the A1.
There’s probably just about a mile of walking and a couple of hundred feet climbing to get on the top.
This is the end of the Glen Etive thing. There will be no more Scottish stuff for a while. I have socks to wash.

8 comments:

beatingthebounds said...

Good luck with the sock washing.
Your Glen Etive accounts have had me chuckling loudly (bit embarrassing when there's work to be done.)
Cheers.

John J said...

You should try Smartwool socks - they don't need washing.

A nice write-up Mike.

TTFN

mike knipe said...

Cheers for the sock washing comments boys - but, yes, John J, smartwool socks - what an excellent Fathers day or early birthday present they would make eh?
No longer will your old socks be used as an alternative anaesthetic for needle-phobics
Thats Smart Wool socks - they're great.
Be Smart - wear Smart Wool.

[Cheers for that John, I owe you another pint, probably, depending on results]

Martin Rye said...

You had a fine old time up in the highlands then. Good photos as well as walks.

Paul S said...

I'm another one who had some strange looks at work, still I suppose they must wonder why I'm laughing out loud, nothing normally to chuckle about in here!
Love the historical notes by the way, some fasinating hill names!

mike knipe said...

Martin and Paul - I hate to mention this, but its now traditional, close to fathers Day, Birthdays (early November) and Christmas, to mention potential presents for hillwalkers kid's Dads in your comments.
Just a thought, there.
Not that i'm bothered, but a moderator's job isn't easy y'know...

Paul S said...

Sorry Mike, glad you reminded me, I forgot to mention that my dad had hinted that it would take a very special son/daughter to supply him with what he really wanted, a waterproof midgyproof tent. Not sure what brought that to mind! However I can usually get away with giving him some quality walking socks, he especially likes smartwool funnily enough.

mike knipe said...

Hmm.. smartwool eh?[rubs chin] You're right, Paul, they'd make an ideal present [thumbs up]
Any dad would be proud of his kids if they bought him SMARTWOOL socks.[holds up pair of socks]

Thats Smartwool! The walkers choice. [cue music and sequence including "Dad" (square jawed, tanned country type) marching manfully over desolate North Pennine landscape]

Or a bottle of malt...

Or some jelly babies.