Our first day out on our recent Scotland holiday with mum and dad found us back in Ballater, which is the closest village to the Garnshiel Lodge Estate, where we were staying.
It wasn't the brightest of days but it was lovely to be back and we were looking forward to showing mum and dad around.
Since we'd last visited someone had set up a new Geocache. It was what is kown as a 'multi' and involved us identifying the locations of a number of photographs around the village. It really gave us a good wander around and took us to parts of the village that we hadn't explored before.
We had been looking forward to showing mum and dad the old station, we knew they would have loved it. We had found out before visiting about the fire that pretty much destroyed the whole of the station a few years back and it was so sad seeing it all boarded up, though it was good to see that rebuilding work was under way.
Here is a picture I took on our last visit, compared to how it looks at the moment ...
After a bit of a pitstop for hot chocolate we decided to head out for the Burn O'Vat, another spot that we'd really enjoyed on our previous visit.
We weren't disappointed, and neither were mum and dad. After a nice walk through the woods and a bit of a scramble over the rocks, we were soon through the gap in the rocks.We were greeted with the rushing sound of the waterfall, which was in fuller flow than we had last visited.
It was as awe inspiring as the first time we'd seen it and is definitely somewhere that you can't visit too many times.
It was then time to head back for home, but not without a stop at a roadside AA box for a sneak peak inside and a closer look at some of the horse's hoof fungus, which were just everywhere.
Our last stop of the day was at the Cambus O'May bridge and, again, we were sad to see the damage that had been impacted by the floods back in 2015.
Here is the bridge as it looked on our previous visit, earlier in 2015 ...
... and here is what it looks like now ...
A quick Google search found this image of the level of the flood and it is hard to imagine the beautiful and peaceful Dee as we saw it today to this raging monster in full flood.
Whilst we were sad to see the evidence of the area suffering from a number of devastating incidents since we'd last visited, we were so glad to be back. The area is so beautiful with so much to see and explore. I'm sure this isn't the last time that we will visit Ballater.