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Scotland 2015: Epilogue

But wait, there’s more! Don’t run away just yet! I put a fun present at the end of the page!


I purchased 58 prints at auction.
So far I have addressed 54 of them.  Some of them I perfectly matched. Other were tricky as there was not much left or it had been vastly changed (or in the case of Friars Carse completely rebuilt). For 54 of these I was verifiably in the right place. So let’s talk about the 4 questionable ones.
1) Cockburn Path Tower
I already went over this one. Back on day 19 I missed it. I drove BY it!  This isn’t guesswork – Stravaiging Around Scotland has pictures and GPS coordinates for it. I just missed it. Boo hoo.
This really is the one that got away!
2) The Collegiate Church at Hamilton
I had high hopes for this one at first because I found this color watercolor of it from 1750.
CANMORE – The National Record of the Historic Environment entry for The Collegiate Church at Hamilton lists it demolished mostly around 1732 and completely demolished now.  Their map coordinates show where the site was. The site now is tennis courts. So I didn’t even go!
3) St. Roque’s Chapel
CANMORE – The National Record of the Historic Environment entry for St. Roque’s Chapel lists it as “No Longer Extant” which is good enough for me! It also says “The structure was derelict in 1789 and finally demolished in 1791.” Since there weren’t any pictures on their site (that I could access) I wanted to make sure that my St. Roque’s was the one that was in/near Edinburgh. I found this engraving of places around Edinburgh that listed a St. Roque’s chapel and the picture in the lower left is clearly the same place.  So I feel safe to say it is no longer standing.
Astley Ainslie Hospital is on that site and from Google Street View you can see a sign for St. Roque’s.
And the GPS Coordinates and Street View shows that there is nothing there!
So I didn’t go.
4) North Berwick Monastery
Day 19! Again day 19! As you recall from the entry for Day 19, I originally was only able to verify one of my pictures of North Berwick Nunnery.  But after careful sleuthing with Google Maps and Google Earth I was able to verify that the second print of North Berwick Nunnery is the same place. Not only is it the same place but I took a picture of it.  This was all covered on Day 19.
But this third one. North Berwick Monastery eluded me.  I drove around North Berwick until I was able to get a nice approximation of North Berwick Law (the hill in the backdrop) and called it a day. I figured that I basically had the same view without the ruin.  What had been bothering me though was seeing no record of a North Berwick Monastery ANYWHERE.  So I dug a little more.
The Monastery of North Berwick
It is impossible to state definitely the date of the erection of this building, locally known as “The Nunnery,” and, in the recent days, “The Abbey.” The correct name is “The Monastery,” which is that always used in deed granted the Prioress and on the Common Seal of the Convent.
So according to this – it really is the same place! Even better, the Transactions has of of my North Berwick Nunnery prints labeled as North Berwick Monastery. But even more astounding they cite the book that the print was taken from.  Now, I did a lot of research before I went to Scotland. And while I found copies of a lot of these prints at antique websites and auctions all over the Internet, I never once found the book that these book plates were from. I had assumed they were book plates but this was the best lead I had yet! And there it is: The Antiquities of Scotland by Francis Grose, Published 1797. And archives.org has the entire book online! 

All of my prints are book plates
from THIS book

Sorry, little excited there.
First things first. The book verifies that my St. Roque’s Chapel is in Edinburgh (well was – is – was – you know what I mean).
OK so going back to this print – North Berwick Monastery. The text of the book refers to it as “Nunnery” even though the engraving says “Monastery” (actually it is misspelled as “Monastrey”). This print doesn’t visually match anything. Even the historic photos on CANMORE – The National Record of the Historic Environment entry for North Berwick Nunnery don’t match up. So, while I am confident that this engraving is of North Berwick – it has North Berwick Law in the background – I just don’t feel I can put a stamp of approval that I photographed this print.
However – not to end on a downer!
I purchased 58 prints and identified the location of all 58! I even tracked down the source materials!
Here are all 5,000 pictures I took with my good Pentax DSLR

Scotland 2015: Day 23

Last day in Scotland!
I will start with some vanilla and toffee pancakes at the Albyn Townhouse.
First stop the Abbey & Palace of Holyrood House. It’s a two-fer four-fer! Its a castle, and a church, and 4 prints. All the prints are of the Abbey. Church #36.  This is Print #51.
Print #52
Print #53
Print #54. This last one was the hardest – too many trees! That’s my last print! I’m done! More about being done at the end of this post.
Last skulls for this adventure.
Holyrood Palace. That’s why it gets its own listing. Castle #74. The palace is still in use – the queen was just here 🙂
I said the queen was just here right? The gift shop knew she was here.
Up a long flight(s) of stairs – Castle #75. Edinburgh Castle.
If you go to Edinburgh Castle you have to have the tea service – even if you do hot cocoa instead of tea.
Old town Edinburgh – at a gift shop.
Electric bagpipes!
St. Giles Cathedral. Church #37
One last thing on my to do list and it’s free!! Museum of Childhood, Edinburgh. Historic #20. The guy who started the museum didn’t like children, he founded it so people could reminisce about their childhood.  Children are welcome now of course.
It’s a creepy doll museum!
Real creepy.
Cool but creepy!
Punch & Judy!
So many good old toys!
They even have phenakistiscopes!
To be honest though, I am here for the board games – I teach game design:
This last one got me in trouble:
The caption said it was the oldest board game in history. This didn’t make sense to me as I hadn’t heard of it, but it turns out that most modern board games do come from the Royal Game of Goose and my research led me down another rabbit hole of a project that is best mentioned at a later date!
Finally – my rack of lamb!!! Sadly it was terrible! I mean horrible. Worst meal in Scotland.
That’s it! The last sunset over Edinburgh Castle, in the rain of course! Goodbye Scotland!
Scotland 2015 Final Total
Days: 23
Prints: 54
Castles: 75
Churches: 37
Historic: 20
Nature: 11
Prehistoric: 8

Total Miles Traveled: 3,390!

Map Day 23: Edinburgh
Map Week 3 (+2 days):
This is the complete GPS trail of my expedition or this link to a live map:
But wait, there’s more! Don’t run away just yet! 

The Epilogue


Scotland 2015: Day 22

Day 22 – starts with some porridge 🙂 Would you believe that it’s raining?
Biggar Kirk – Church #32 – Print #46 an easy one. The custodian of the church was taking her friend around so she insisted I come inside with them. Her friend said she lived in the town for years but had never been inside. I asked if that was because she was some kind of heathen and she said no – it was because she was the pastor at the other church!  We all had a big laugh and she told me that some of her best friends are heathens!
I think the tombstone part is missing! The part with the name and date!
A stool of repentance!! From 1694!
Followed GPS coordinates to a farmhouse and was shown the only bits that were left of Drumelzier Castle. Castle #77 – Print #47.
Rosslyn Chapel. Not rustic like in the movies. Well manicured grounds, glass dividers for entry. Very much a tourist trap. A nice one though! Church #33.
The church has been completely restored! I still got a good alignment. St. Margaret’s Parish Church. Church #34 – Print #48. Probably the most exciting news is that the church is in Restalrig, which is practically IN Edinburgh. I have completed the loop! So how much more can I do tonight to leave myself room for tomorrow?
Some Great tombstones!
OMG – I only have 6 prints left and they are at 2 locations.
St. Anthony’s Chapel is in Holyrood Park. Great find, right across the water, just like 200 years ago! Church #35 – Print #49.
I had to hike up that hill to get this view of St. Anthony’s Chapel. Print #50!
I’m in Edinburgh! I got as much done as I could do, so I am going on The Scotch Whisky Experience! It’s only been here since 2009 but the collection is vintage! Historic #17
They had scratch and sniff stickers!
And the largest collection of Scotch to view in the world!
And over 400 types you can order at the bar!
The 19th century Camera Obscura was open! Historic #18.
I am so excited!
What a powerful powerful display of science and history – they could pan and view all over the city! I came home and built one!
The building is the Camera Obscura and World of Illusions. I will refrain from posting my 4 floors of optical illusions – got some great ideas! They had a mandalas app that was no where near as good as mine. Also here is a thermal selfie.
Dinner at the White Hart Inn the oldest pub in Edinburgh – open continuously since 1516!!! Historic #19.
That’s it! Tomorrow is my last day! 4 prints left at the Abbey, then a quick visit to Edinburgh Castle, and then, maybe, to The Museum of Childhood!
Scotland 2015 Totals
Prints: 50
Days: 22
Castles: 73
Churches: 35
Historic: 19
Nature: 11
Prehistoric: 8
Map Day 22: Quothquan to Edinburgh

Scotland 2015: Day 21

I spent a while last night carefully culling my list again. Yes the original list was insane and not possible but now a couple of long drives will make my updated list a reality!
It’s a mixed blessing today. Awesome breakfast but then I went back to the room and SLAMMED my knee into the bed frame so bad I can barely bend it now. But man that salmon was awesome!!!
Raining, of course. This is a relatively accurate view of an impossible picture. From across the water you can’t get this view, and the water is in the print! Another fanciful artist rendition. Castle #65 – Print #40. Castle Kennedy Gardens.
This one was ridiculously easy, and right past the Dunskey Castle trailer park. Castle #66 – Print #41 – Dunskey Castle. I can’t imagine being a kid and getting to grow up with a castle ruin to play it. And everyone I talk to, tells me about growing up playing in castle ruins.
Wow. Nature #11 – Ailsa Craig.
This one is very weird. To get here, I pulled past a parking lot and ended up on the tarmac of an old, and no longer in use, airport. I drove across the overgrown runways, which was surreal, as far as I could and then parked and walked carefully to the golf course.
If you sneak onto a golf course, you need to be VERY careful, especially if people are playing. I have done this before – I hunt castles – there are often ruins on golf courses. It is even worse if it is famous course. This is a famous course.
The famous Turnberry golf course a.k.a Trump Turnberry. Really didn’t want to get busted here.  There is a lighthouse but only a little bit of the ruin left. Castle #67 – Print #42. Turnbury Castle.
This place was huge and even had a kiddie park, gardens, & swan boats! Castle #68 – Culzean Castle.
A tricky one but a fun one! I walked into the gift shop and showed them my print. They were confused. They admitted the name was right and that the buildings looked right but had no idea what angle it was taken from.  Not the front, not the back, not the side. I ended up walking into some farmers field taking a picture from an angle that makes NO sense unless you want to take a huge 3 dimensional landscape and put it all on one line, from the diagonal! Church #31 – Print #43 – Crossraguel Abbey.
This is unusual for an Abbey – that’s a murder hole!
A ruined castle on the side of the road – too close not to stop – Baltersan Castle. I looked it up! Castle #69!
The rain just came back pretty hard. What is worse I am right by the coast so its the stinging kind. This is a big public park and requires another unusual angle. Though the tree does cover up the skate park nicely. Castle #70 – Print #44. Dunure Castle.
Down the road. The rain stopped suddenly and now there is too much sun. Not much left of the castle but fun to wander around the beach waiting for the sun to hide behind a cloud. Actually it was a little terrifying. There was sort of tent city setup and I had to wander through it, people of all ages living a rather makeshift existence, and here I am covered in technology.  I got glares but no one spoke to me. Castle #71 – Print #45 – Greenan Castle. Time to drive! The further I drive – the more time I will have in Edinburgh.
Hotels.com did me a really solid tonight! 12th century castle for $67!!! Castle #72 – Shieldhill Castle.
I deserve a nice dinner in a castle right? 2 more days and then I head back to the states.
Scotland 2015 Totals
Days: 21
Prints: 45
Castles: 72
Churches: 31
Historic: 16
Nature: 11
Prehistoric: 8
Map Day 21: Stranraer to Quothquan
Technically this is the end of week 3 but with only 2 days left I will wait for the big map.

Scotland 2015: Day 20

People have asked me about how much technology I have with me or what my routines are. It’s pretty simple. I have a Microsoft Surface Pro Laptop/Tablet computer with me and every night I copy onto it: 1) Memory card from Pentax camera 2) Photos from iPhone 3) Panoramas from Ricoh Theta. I also download my GPS log and convert it into a GPX file. I then copy all of the days data onto two external hard drives. So that’s my data.

Charging wise: Laptop and Pentax Battery in the wall and via my USB charging hub: My Internet Hotspot, Apple Watch, iPhone (not pictured – duh), GPS logger, Ricoh Theta and USB fan (for my comfort and the white noise).

I have 3 lenses but really only use 2 (10mm-20mm) and (18mm-200mm) and I also have a WiFi SD card which I only use if I need to remote the Pentax camera (usually attached to a monopod balanced on my chest). As a rule I don’t use a tripod but for matching the prints I am making an exception. It is a walking stick that converts to a tripod. Barely a tripod – barely a monopod either – but it has been useful in the tough hiking!  Everything else is about protection and cleaning supplies, in total much smaller than you think.

And it’s raining!

Eggs Benedict with salmon and porridge!!! Mmmm
Saw this sign at a castle today. Look how friendly…  shivers…
Remember that rain I mentioned? The roads were flooded all over the place!

My first stop in the rain. Easy angle, though a very unusual one. This is not a place most would stand. Church #28 – Print #34 – Dryburgh Abbey.
The second print of Dryburgh Abbey looks nothing like the reality of being here. At first, I took the closest angle I could guess. Then I walked around and around and realized that the engraver didn’t understand what the artist probably drew and tried to fix the geometries (incorrectly). Trying to get into the artists head, I finally found the rightest spot!!! Print #35.
No print here but it was right around the corner from the last place and a must see. Church #29 – Melrose Abbey.
They were prepping for a wedding! At a ruin, how romantic.
What a gargoyle: A pig playing the bagpipes!
The Heart of Robert The Bruce! Now I’ve seen the whole thing!
It really is a great ruin!
I have a long drive today so I grabbed some take away… Haggis is good!
Gorgeous right? Castle #62 – Caerlaverock Castle.

Another great example of one artist working from another. The print of Caerlaverock Castle is both impossible and improbable. It is impossible to see everything there at once (including the arch in the car park which I got in by fudging on the angle. More importantly, everything in the print looks parallel to the plane but the entire castle is designed in 45 degree angles which the engraver just didn’t get. Print #36.

Great angle. Shame about the car but then again it sort of dates the photo too 🙂 Church #30 – Print #37 – Sweetheart Abbey.
Another great shot of the ruin!

In the middle of farm country, in the middle of nowhere. It is hard to stand back very far! Lag Tower – Castle #63 – Print #38.

Friars Carse should have been easy.  Sitting in Cleveland, I Googled it and found the operational Friars Carse Country House Hotel. Said to myself – check – it exists and put it on my list.

Then I get to the Friars Carse Country House Hotel, where people are preparing for a traditional Scottish wedding – all the men and boys in dress Kilts. I figured to avoid interrupting I would walk in and ask where my print was taken from. I walk into the hotel and on the wall is a picture of my print – so I am feeling pretty good.  And then I asked and then they answered.

My print is dated, 1789. This painting by Alexander Nasmyth for Robert Riddell is dated 1787. However in 1771 Robert Riddell pulled down the old and ruinous buildings to create room for a new mansion, which itself was completely rebuilt in 1873.   I’m in the right spot at the right building – it just doesn’t look the same. That’s all. Frairs Carse – Castle #64 – Print #39. But it gets better! The great Scottish poet Robert Burns wrote Auld Lang Syne here!

One last funny story. On my long drive across the southern border, as I race to get these prints done and head north again, I see a sign that says “Welcome to England” and I was like No!! But then a few minutes later another sign that said “Welcome to Scotland” and since I didn’t get out of the car I can honestly say I didn’t set foot in England this trip!

Scotland 2015 Totals
Days: 20
Prints: 39
Castles: 64
Churches: 30
Historic: 16
Nature: 10
Prehistoric: 8
Map Day 20: Dryburgh to Stranraer

Scotland 2015: Day 19

Day 19. Today is day 19! Every time I reflect on the chaos that is the trip I end up spending so much time talking about Day 19!
I’m going to have skip Hadrian’s Wall – it’s technically England anyway. But I’m gonna do my damnedest to get these prints done!  Anyways, it’s NOT raining. Now it’s too sunny. I am having a little bit of a late start because got a good nights sleep – finally a good bed. Also, I’m tired – not of the adventure – just physically tired 🙂 Only a few more days left – time to push on!!!
Started with a very yummy if not overpriced breakfast. The premise is that I’m gonna run as much as I can which means breakfast and dinner but probably no lunch.
Technically today is the worst day of the entire trip. I have something like 10 prints that I could see in the area and my research on them is VERY very spotty.  One of my best resources this entire trip has been CANMORE – National Record of the Historic Environment but some of these prints are very very esoteric.
North Berwick is tricky as I have 4 prints from here and very little is a definitive. 2 of the prints are marked North Berwick Nunnery and one says North Berwick Monastery and that one looks very ruined and NOTHING like the other two prints.  In my research I found that in the middle of the ‘burbs there is an Abbey Street and a Nunsgate Street and between these two there is an old age home called the Abbey Home or something like that. You can see nothing from the road. You can’t even see the big hill (called North Berwick which you will see in a moment). Using Google street view and Google Earth each I saw glimpses of something. I rang the bell and explained my situation and they took me in and showed me what was left! Some interesting ruins. From the courtyard you can see some ruins but from the outside it is covered by shrubs, trees, and fences. 
On the outside between the shrubs and bushes and trees I was able to verify one of the two views! Obviously I am shooting from a very weird angle.  Church #24 – Print #25 – North Berwick Nunnery.
Now a 2018 update.  I don’t give up easily! I have 2 views titled North Berwick Nunnery and while they don’t look anything alike, the CANMORE website verifies that I am in the correct location and has much earlier photographs than mine than match the prints. So it is all about point of view.
Looking at Print #25, the one that I verified, you can see that I am standing closest to the road, north of the Nunnery facing south.  The yellow arrow indicates the round tower area and the red arrow the tallest part of the wall.
The other print (that I will now call Print #26) looks totally different. Using Google Earth and changing my point of view you can see the two islands in the distance the red arrow indicates Lamb Island and the yellow arrow is Bass Rock. This is a north facing view.  Interesting how different the ruin looks from north vs. south.  They are from two different engravers and one is dated 1789 and the other 1790. And we have also no idea if the original drawings or paintings that these prints are based on were by the same artists and even when those were made.
That being said. Look at the wall, the window and the ruined doorways. It’s not perfect but it is damned close. Print #26 – North Berwick Nunnery.

Another long explanation. The volcanic hill is called North Berwick Law. At the top is the ruin of an Iron Age Fortress, which is one of my prints, and a whale’s jawbone.
For hundreds of years they would keep replacing the jawbone every time it eroded. Now they use a fiberglass one.
The print is awful – I’ve studied the real layout of the iron age fortress and other photographs and clearly the engraver didn’t understand what the artist had seen. What is worse, to get up that hill is at least an hour and the hike is described as “treacherous”.
I opted for a long shot with my real camera. Historic #15 – Print #27 – Iron Age Ruin on the Berwick Law.
5 minutes away is this epic castle – Castle #59 – Tantallon Castle.
Just gorgeous. The castle has a monastery, a lighthouse, and a bird sanctuary and this view of Bass Rock – Nature #9.
Another detective story.  I have been doing extensive research into all ruins in the vicinity of North Berwick in anticipation of these prints. But while I am driving around I see this tower ruin in a field.
I’m thinking there is a tower and field in my North Berwick Monastery print. So I zoom all around at different angles and realize that no matter how hard I look – this isn’t my print.
When I came home I found out that it is a Ruined Windmill at Balgone Barns in North Berwick – Historic #16.
I keep driving around and finally it all lines up everything seems perfect – the angle of the ruin, the jawbone at the top, the layout of the fields, the property walls and I am willing to bet this was view of North Berwick Law seen in the engraving. 2018 update: I was wrong.  You will have to wait until Day 23 to find out just how wrong though.
However, sometimes it is easy 🙂 I didn’t understand what I was looking at in the print. It just seemed like a bizarre geometry. When I got to the church, the lady there explained that the spire was unfinished, which is why it looks like a hat! Church #25 – Print #28 – Seton Collegiate Church. This is one of my favorite pictures of the trip – a nice happy moment.
they did a glorious restoration here in the 1970s and the photograph has more than the picture! Church #26 – Print #29 – St Marys Church Haddington.
Another challenge. Innerwick Castle is a big ruin that is almost impossible to see via the road or any satellite maps. I found some references to it in a rock climbing website and had a rough latitude and longitude. It overlooks a gulch so you can’t just march around to find it.
I asked at someone’s house and she told me to go to the corner of The 4 Acres farm and a house called “Castleview”. She said once there I could cross into the field and follow the inside of the wall all the way around. I found the corner but I couldn’t see anything. So I decided to ask at the house and climb the stairs to the front door.  I am at the top stair and about to knock on the door marked “Castleview” when I turned around and I could SEE the castle. I couldn’t see it from the street, only from climbing up the stairs! Castle #60 – Print #30. It is a big time ruin though – but wait there is even more!
All of the sudden the man who lives in “Castleview” comes out. When I tell him what I am trying to do he informs me that the barley is too high and that all the field shortcuts are gone. He tells me to get back in my car and follow him to Crowhill.  He then shows me a gate and a path that leads to the castle from the other side of the gulch!
It starts out normal enough.
Just like a park.
And at least I know I am at the right place!
But it starts to get scary.
And very dangerous.
But I made it and the ruin is massive.
It is amazing how different it is up close.
There is no way to “back up” to take the pictures when behind you is a ravine. I already got my picture from “Castleview”, so technically I didn’t have to trek all the way to it. But but it was too tempting to not finish the hunt and technically I don’t have to do any of this!
I have 3 prints of this church but regretfully all of the interesting bits of the priory are gone!! Church #27 – Coldingham Priory – Print #31.
Coldingham Priory – Print #32.
Coldingham Priory – Print #33.
There were like 50 turbines out there.
For my tombstone symboligists…
I had one last tricky one on my list – it is just a bizarre coincidence that they are all on the same day! I had coordinates and knew that almost nothing was left of the ruin on my print.  After a very long time down/up a truly dirt road and rounding a mountain I came as close as I could but couldn’t find it.  I think the ruin was in a field on the other side of that fence that I just couldn’t to safely. I have failed!!! The one that got away! A 2108 update! I’ve been agonizing for years about not climbing that fence or spending more time finding my print: Cockburn Path Tower.  I found it online, pictures of the actual ruin and GPS coordinates.  So how close was I? Not close at all!
I was 13 miles away!
Insult to injury! The bottom pin is where I “thought” the print was. The top pin is where it actually is. See that blue line? That’s my path. I passed it. I was RIGHT there. I PASSED IT! Well now it really is the one that got away!
It’s after 5 and everything should be closed. After 5 is my driving time. But look – a Lego castle! Seriously how fake does this thing look! I even went inside. It is very very strange! Castle #61 – Hume Castle.
Oh for a good night’s sleep!
This is a proper cheese course!
And, of course, I had sticky toffee pudding 🙂
Thus endeth day 19 and what a day!  I only have 4 days left – and that last day HAS to be Edinburgh – so I have 3 days to dip down to the southern part of Scotland and and come back up! I’m carefully culling my fun list. Prints are now my highest priority!
Scotland 2015 Totals
Days: 19
Prints: 33
Castles: 61
Churches: 27
Historic: 16
Nature: 10
Prehistoric: 8
Map Day 19: North Berwick to Dryburgh

Scotland 2015: Day 18

Today is going to be a real challenge. Two of the places I want to see require ferries to get to them and they make you stay there for a while. So here I am trying to hurry up and I am being slowed down!
How could I miss Loch Leven Castle? Castle #56
It’s on an island and Mary Queen of Scots was imprisoned here. One castle I once visited claimed to be famous because it had nothing to do with Mary Queen of Scots and that is in itself a unique boast.
When the excavated here they found (and somehow verified) that they have the tomb of Robert The Bruce, everything but his heart, and boy did they display it big on the addition! Across the top of this church are the words “The Bruce”. Church #20 – Dunfermline Abbey.
The tomb of Robert The Bruce! Except his heart. They don’t have his heart.
The point of view in this print is impossible. Also part of the church has been added onto.
The ruins on the right are gone but this shows what’s in the print – Print #21 -Dunfermline Abbey.
I came to see the Abbey but it turns out they also have a ruin of a palace! Castle #57 – Dunfermline Palace.
Fun little castle – very friendly – Castle #58 – Aberdour Castle.
Love the beehive shaped “doocot” (pigeon house).
I have two prints of this one so I have to do it but it’s on on island in the Forth and they take you on a 45-minute boat cruise first and then you have a 90 minute stopover on the island. The good news is that I have two prints and I nailed them both!! Church #21 – Print #22 – Inchcolm Abbey.
Print #23 – Inchcolm Abbey. It was weird how the ruined wall is read differently in each of the engravings. It almost seems curved in this one.
I don’t think this is seaworthy.
They built this in 1882!!! Historic #14 – Forth Railway Bridge. I should just have a bridge category.
I saw seals but no puffins…
I tried to squeeze one more in before sunset. The place I had in mind to visit was behind very high walls, it is a good one so I will have to go back tomorrow. However on the way to the hotel there was a different one from my list.  With the exception of the fact that it was right next to the Scottish Open (oy traffic!) this one was easy. On one of their information signs, they even had a copy of my print to illustrate the differences! The old St. Andrews Church in Gullane.  Church #23 – Print #24.
More iconography- look a side skull!!
Dinner time. Fish cakes for starters.
Lamb chops! Finally!
Bread Pudding.
I’m in North Berwick at a surprisingly nice hotel the Macdonald Marine Hotel & Spa (thank you Hotels.com). Tomorrow is going to be insane –  I have 4 prints in North Berwick but more clues than actual locations. The locals are trying to help me with the landmarks and I am going to try and research a little tonight and then just get on with it in the morning.
Scotland 2015 Totals
Days: 18
Prints: 24
Castles: 58
Churches: 23
Historic: 14
Nature: 9
Prehistoric: 8
Map Day 18: Kinross to North Berwick

Scotland 2015: Day 17

Last night I stayed in Broughty Ferry, which is almost to Dundee!

Today was going to be a long day. I got up first thing so I could drive BACK up the coast to be here when it opened. Church #16 & Print #15 – Arbroath Abbey.

It didn’t rain (until later) so great clouds and a big sun means pretty silhouettes.


Then back to Dundee… I love this castle! Funny story about this castle from back in 2000. I was visiting Broughty Castle, which is the next castle for today, and they told me that this place was awesome but also showed me a flier that the castle had closed for the summer the day before.  Even closed they still told me to go there if only to get a good picture or two. So I hired a taxi to take me there and wait while I took some photos. As I am taking my photos a man comes out of the castle and asks me why I am not coming inside. I explained that over at Broughty Castle that they told me (and showed me on the flier) that he was closed for the season. He got upset because that’s why nobody had come all day and told me to send my taxi away and personally toured me through the entire castle.  He even let me see into the rafters and also the modern toilet that they have in the office.

It’s so small and perfect – two towers and a keep – you could really live here! The funny part is that it is situated right in a residential neighborhood. It is like the corner lot in the ‘burbs just happens to be this castle. This is a castle I would own! Castle #52 – Claypotts Castle.

And 1/2 mile down the road! Castle #53 – Broughty Castle.

Then off to St. Andrews! No – I didn’t play the Old Course. St. Andrews is a really fun place. The entire city is steeped in history and it is also a college town.  When I was in graduate school taking the History of European Photography they showed us this 1846 photo by Robert Adamson in the collection of the Cleveland Museum of Art.

And I was like, I was there in 2000 and took the same picture but 150 years later!

This is a great ruin. The castle was mined and counter mined.  One way of taking down a castle it to dig a tunnel from the street under one of the walls and then collapse the foundation.  This is how you mine or undermine a castle – it is also why they went for round instead of square towers. If you are in the castle when this is happening, you can see that they are digging a tunnel. So to defend against it you start to dig your own tunnel to meet their tunnel and fight them!  The problem is that you are digging blindly – just listening for them.  Your can dig this tunnel faster because it only has to be people sized.  So back in the day the castle was mined and the people in the castle built a countermine and where the two tunnels meet a battle ensued and the castle one. The entire thing was filled in and only later excavated for you to get to explore. Back in 2000 when I visited it was raining. There I am on my hands and knees climbing through this tunnel with water running in it beside me eventually opening up into the cavernous space where a battle had taken place underground several hundred years ago. Pretty epic.  Today though it was just tourists everywhere! Castle #54 – St Andrews Castle.

St. Rule’s Tower – Church #17.

Love that sky!

Now the challenge – St Andrews Cathedral – Church #18 – Print #16. I love how these prints are all not the “typical” point of view. It makes me wonder if these were the typical points of view back then and why and how our modern sensibilities might have changed.

I love this shot!

And another just because it’s pretty!

I deserve a snack…

“Would you like to sample our Gorgonzola?” “Sure” – and they hand me this… so good and so messy…

Took a while to get the right angle! It is actually from a little around the corner but not easy with the phone because of traffic. I ended up having the camera on the monopod balanced off my chest and a remote triggering it. Church #19 – Print #17 – The Blackfriars’ Chapel.

I love these self service honesty shops. Just shows the respect of the community.

Ooh a challenge! After being guided by latitude and longitude, I still couldn’t tell if the building was standing or if I was even in the right place . Luckily one of the buildings had a little plaque that said “The Priory”. The drawing is practically orthographic and these are in reality three buildings with a courtyard. As always I was able to do better with the real camera but the view in the print doesn’t exist and probably never did!! Church #20 – Print #18 – Pittenweem Priory.

I hated this place – hated the atmosphere – the staff – just felt unwelcome if not put upon. People were mean and snooty! Castle #55 – Falkland Palace.

I have two prints of this tower and it is fun to follow the clues. Note the door in the tower! Then the curved road and wall leading to a small building with a chimney! It’s 11th century and probably was a bell tower so it gets listed as Historic #13 – Print #19. Abernethy Round Tower.

One of my shots with my real camera, the jogger came by exactly where the man is walking in the print! Nailed it.

This one is a little more challenging. No door in the print. The windows go all the way around. The clock was added in 1868 so that doesn’t help. The small window in the center might be in this picture but the scale would have this tower be 5 times its size. This print is probably a fiction 🙂 Print #20 – Abernethy Round Tower.


Overall day 16 was pretty productive – did 10 items and have driven over 2,000 miles. Tomorrow should be interesting as two of the castles require boats to get to them! It has rained every day! I’m almost back to Edinburgh to start my quick southern loop! I have 38 more prints to go!!! Since two of my prints the sites have been total demolished I am going to have to cut them off my list to save time.  I might also have to lose the 2 museums in Edinburgh – this is about castles and prints!!!

Scotland 2015 Totals
Days: 17
Prints: 20
Castles: 55
Churches: 20
Historic: 13
Nature: 9
Prehistoric: 8
Map Day 17: Broughty Ferry to Kinross

Scotland 2015: Day 16

No breakfast picture today!
The first stop is the Queen’s summer place in Scotland – Balmoral Castle – Castle #48. Apparently the hotel where I stayed gets better Internet when the Queens is in town.
Of course since it’s the Queen’s summer palace guess what they sell in the gift shop!
As I was leaving the highlands the fog rolled in. It was crazy! At one point everyone on the road just a stopped! Then we all drove real slow until a breeze came through and lifted this veil of cloud and revealed the mountains. Then everyone just stopped again to admire the view. Finally, we all went back on our way – very much a moment.
Gorgeous White Castle (ha ha) – Castle #49 – Blair Castle.
Too bad you can’t eat any of this while driving!
This cathedral was on my list.

It’s nice. But I spent most of the visit trying to figure out why it was on my list.
I still have no idea why this was on my “must see” list? Church #14 -Dunkeld Cathedral.
For you tombstone symbologists…
Then the day got real fun. The LOW OIL light on the car turned on. I couldn’t figure out how to open the hood because, of course, they open the hood differently in Europe. Then of course what oil goes in it? It’s a diesel engine, does that matter? Why was I low on oil? Did I do something wrong? It’s all good now. Heading to Glamis Castle.
The approach is awe inspiring…
Everyone takes the front shot – but the print is clearly from a side view! Castle #50 – Glamis Castle.  Print #13
This next one was a real challenge. The ruin is on private land with access roads marked “private” and the Police were driving up and down the road! I parked on the side of the road and made sure to stay on public land. These farm fences with steep curves are dangerous! For the real camera I used a monopod and a remote control (via my iPhone) with the pole resting on my tummy – pretty tricky but I got the right angle! Castle #51 – Red Castle. Print #14
Scotland 2015 Totals
Days: 16
Prints: 14
Castles: 51
Churches: 15
Historic: 12
Nature: 9
Prehistoric: 8
Map Day 16: Braemar to Broughty Ferry
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