Thursday 27 July 2023

A Visit To Brew Dog's "Lost Forest" - not much change!

A brief break in the rain

I didn’t see what I was expecting to see and this was good. For once. What wasn’t there was any tree planting or sign of tree planting on Brew Dog’s Kinrara estate which straddles the border of the Cairngorms National Park and includes Geal-charn Mor, a Corbett.

When I went there last summer I found long lines of fencing being constructed across the hillsides (see here). By this February the fencing was complete (see here) but nothing else had changed as far as I could see, though the land was snow-covered so I thought I might have missed something.

Trees returning

Late July and I did expect to see some signs of forestry activity but no, it looked much the same as last summer. Looking closely regenerating trees – pine, birch, rowan – were coming along nicely and a bit bigger than last year. Brew Dog’s “Lost Forest” is returning without any need for planting.

I walked up to the top of the estate track known as the Burma Road that runs from Strathspey to the River Dulnain. The top of Geal-charn Mor lies some 130 metres higher and a little over a kilometre away, an easy walk over mostly boggy heather moorland. The rain was beating down and cloud covered the top so on this occasion I didn’t go the top though. Instead I wandered a little way down towards the Dulnain to see if there was any sign of planting here. There wasn’t. Maybe there is lower down.

Purple time

Despite the rain and the lack of the forecast evening clearance (instead the rain got heavier) this was an enjoyable walk. Seeing young trees poking through the heather is always heartening. And the heather itself was turning purple and shining in the sombre light. There were other flowers too with bright blue Scottish bluebells standing out.

Scottish bluebells

Occasionally there were hazy views of the hills. Once or twice the sun broke through briefly, lighting up the land before the clouds closed in again. Lower down the birches, rich in their summer finery, looked glorious.

There are hills in the cloud

Will planting start soon? I hope not but probably. It’s unnecessary. The forest is coming back and should be left to do so. 

It rained


1 comment:

  1. And the culling of nearly 200 deer to save the saplings!!!! I know what I'd rather see in the wild.