N: Scotland, Rarities and Specialities
July 15 - July 19
PLEASE NOTE change to published schedule. This is now the first of two meetings focusing on rare and special ferns in Scotland. The second meeting will be in Summer 2020. In this meeting we will be visiting sites in the east and eastern-central areas of Scotland. Some of the sites will involve significant hill walking and scrambling, so a good level of fitness will be required.
Outline plan – some sites are still to be confirmed. There are two centres – the Aviemore/Feshibridge area, and Glen Clova.
Arrive in Aviemore / Feshiebridge area. Evening meal, maybe at Loch Insh Outdoor Centre. Stay in this area for 4 nights.
1. Brief stop at Loch an Eilein to see Pteridium aquilinum ssp. pinetorum (original type location)
2. Glen Feshie: Meall Buidhe – Geal Charn ridge for clubmosses: Lycopodium lagopus, L. annotinum, Diphasiastrum issleri etc; also Dryopteris expansa and Athyrium distentifolium.
[probably] Coire Adair, Creag Meagaidh (north of Loch Laggan). About an hour’s drive. One of the most accessible site to see a significant population of Athyrium distentifolium var. flexile.
1. Cove Bay for Cystopteris dickieana. Asplenium marinum is here as well. About 2-2.5 hours from Aviemore. An early start is necessary as high tide is about 1.45 pm so I’d like to get there no later than 10.30 in order to have a reasonable amount of time there.
2. Hill of Towanreef (or one of a couple of other nearby serpentine sites) – Asplenium adiantum-nigrum ssp. silesiacum [syn. corrunense]; also Asplenium viride, Cystopteris fragilis and others.
3. Bridgend of Livet (or another site nearby) for Cystopteris dickieana – inland form, for comparison.
It may be better to reverse the order and do Cove Bay last, in the mid afternoon when the tide is going out. This is equally possible.
Leave Aviemore area. Drive south via Pitlochry:
Glen Shee Ski Lift: the recently discovered Botrychium nordicum, also B. lunaria + some clubmosses.
One or two other sites will be included depending on time – these are still to be finalised.
Drive to Glen Clova – stay in Glen Clova area 1 or 2 nights (those living closer may opt to leave at the end of Friday).
Corrie Fee: including Woodsia ilvensis and W. alpina; Equisetum pratense, sylvaticum and x mildeanum; Polystichum lonchitis; Dryopteris expansa, Lycopodium annotinum, etc.
Evening meal (probably Glen Clova Hotel)
Car sharing will be good, especially the Cove Bay day as it’s quite a long drive. I will be asking the Rangers at Corrie Fee if we can get a key to the gate so we can drive closer. It’s still do-able if not but it would make it easier.
1. Aviemore / Feshiebridge area: Some people are going to be staying at Loch Insh Outdoor Centre. This is a good centre and has a nice restaurant/bar. https://lochinsh.com. There are a range of b&bs and hotels in the area. I will probably be camping at Dalraddy Holiday park just up the road.
2. Corrie fee / Glen Clova
The Glen Clova hotel is convenient and some people will definitely be staying there, myself included. There is apparently a B&B opposite the hotel although I don’t know it. There are a range of other b&bs in the area, and Kirriemuir the nearest large town is not far. John Edgington also suggests further away is St Drostans Lodge in Glen Esk; and John also says he has room for a couple of people to stay with him although it’s about an hour and 20 minutes drive away so a bit of a trek.