Sunday, 21 January 2018

Winter at Balmoral (no Corgis in sight)

Contrary to the impression given by calendars featuring the Scottish Highlands, it is rare indeed that our winter weather is conducive to the perfect outing in the mountains.

But just every once in a while, the weather gods permit that ideal combination of blue skies, no wind, enough snow to cover the ground but not too much to make walking difficult, and the right temperature so that the snow is in a pristine  powdery state (neither slushy nor icy). Such was the case this Saturday.

In general it is easy, on days when fine conditions prevail, to persuade Gail to seize the moment (especially when the alternative is shopping for a new oven). And so it was that we headed out first thing to Ballochbuie Forest on the Queen's Balmoral Estate, one of our all time favourite places.

Actually, Gail said something about needing to celebrate that civilisation had more or less survived a year of You Know Who as President...

We first stopped for a wee peek at Crathie Kirk,

but the doors were locked,

and so it was onwards for a four mile romp in the sparkling forest.

I thought we might see some corgis but apparently they are all soft southerners and prefer to stay at Windsor or Sandringham in January. I did encounter a bad tempered spaniel who nearly succeeded in taking a chunk out of my flappy little ear. I was so brave about it that Gail only realised when we returned home that I had sustained a very small cut.

On the topic of the Royal Family, I confess I am still holding out hope that I might be adopted by Harry and Meghan. They seem such a lovely couple. A few weeks ago, they even chose Nottingham for their first joint official visit. Such excellent taste! Although I am not aware they have been to Balmoral yet. I hope it is not politically incorrect to point out that my colouring (a mixture of black and white, with reddish furs on my head) would make me the perfect modern Royal Mascot for this particular duo?

PS Thank you for all your suggestions for boots to protect my sometimes sensitive paws. I'm afraid I live with a human who is indecisive about these matters so it will probably be summer before she has placed an order...


  1. As usual stunning photography. By the way Bertie that jacket is spiffing. You will however need to have the boots to match each and every one of your jackets.

  2. What a perfect day your picked for such a lovely walk, Bertie. You look so handsome in the blue jacket, and I'm sure Gail could find some really splendid boots to match. We don't want you having any more trouble with your poor little paws. Sometimes it seems she is a bit insensitive to your needs !

    Inca xx

  3. Hari OM
    I, too, think matching boots are imperative! &*> What a wonderfurs walk you had (nasty spaniel notwithstanding). I have to tell you are in white out here at the Hutch just now, and the kids across the way have built the first snowman I have seen since arriving here four years past! Stay warm dear boy. Hugs and wags, YAM-aunty xxx

  4. What a lovely lovely beautiful day for a walk with your favorite human, Gail.
    YIKES a testy spaniel you say? Maybe Gail better place an order for a WFT helmet and
    boots. Looks like your paw did okey dokey on the walk.
    Oh dear a new oven search
    Hugs madi your bfff

  5. The royal couple would be lucky to have a wonderful dog like you. Thanks for sharing the castle.

  6. Gorgeous outing!

    And you must tell Gail that your doggy godmother insists she place a booty order asap.

    Waddle on,
    Tootsie & her mom. Xo

  7. Wow - beautiful photos and such lovely scenery. Great posing too Bertie :-) Nose licks and love from Moth xx

  8. Bertie - Boots for the winter. Fresh air for the summer. Seems a sensible conclusion ?

  9. A gorgeous day much better than looking at kitchen appliances.

  10. We is kinda amazed dat we has survived a year - even if our government is now in "shutdown" mode. Impeachment, or 2021, can't come soon enuf.

  11. Bertie, you should come here cuz there are 2 corgis that live just a block from us! We fear the bootie idea. Mom said I would never consent to wearing them. As for surviving the year . . . mom says just barely (she and dad went to a march over the weekend).

    Keep Calm & Bark On!

    Murphy & Stanley

  12. What a most beautiful hike, Bertie! We do hope the Harry and Meghan come down to Balmoral one day, you would be quite the Royal Mascot...perhaps they would even let Gail stay as your personal assistant! not to mention this to Gail.
    Jakey Arty & Rosy

  13. MOL Bertie 200 yards from your house you say?! Hey how far is that giant sand box near the Atlantic?
    Hugs madi your bfff