Making it back into the car in only partially drowned-rat condition, we set off from the Tower parking lot amidst the growing puddles.
The rain greatly enhancing the color saturation of the surrounding rocks and cliffs as we quickly make our way down off the slopes.
Vacation America Pinball Photo Gallery
(Temporary reprieve from my usual patter just to prove the Not Another Travel Guide series I loosed upon the world could be filled with the usual garp you get from everyone else: You’ll appreciate the deep red coloration of the Spearfish Formation of sandstone and siltstone originally deposited across the region over 230 million years prior in the Triassic period marking the deeper (lower) levels around the Tower. Or I could just insert pictures so you can enjoy the scenery. That’s what I thought, too.)
At one spot the river runs hard against the flank so the path heads up, only to descend again by steps. Shortly after, the attractive houses of Shiel Mill lie below and the tarred road into them is crossed. Where the feeder comes out of another tunnel a steep path goes up, left (Larchwood Walk), but drops down to the graceful single tower suspension bridge across the River Almond. It was built by the Royal Engineers in 1970 and received a Civic Trust Award. In 1986 it was named the Mandela Bridge. Bright laburnums in season, and big chestnut trees. Cross the grassy picnic and play area, once the old walled garden of Almondell House, to reach the park’s Visitor Centre buildings, housed in the stable block of the former mansion. This had a connection with the 18th-century Erskine family. The 11th Earl of Buchan lived at nearby Kirkhill House, and a brother, Henry, built the Almondell mansion. The earl died with no issue to inherit, so much of the Kirkhill contents came to Almondell, and Henry’s son inherited the title in 1829.
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