Smiddy Croft

This is night No 50(!!)/2018 staying in my caravan. Now pitched up on a farm CL, Smiddy Croft near Tyrie. 2 nights for £24. Sounds a lot for a CL, but it's well equipped.

Got up around 0600, and walked the dogs at the beach in Stonehaven. Another grey but dry day. After breakfast, I took them in the car up to the excellent Dunnottar Woods to give them a good run around as this day would involve a couple of hours in the car.

It was starting to drizzle as I packed up and left Stonehaven around 1030. The site was full again last night, a very popular and busy site. To be honest, I was looking forward to the peace and tranquillity of a good CL. CL's (by C&MH Club rules) are 'strictly' limited to 5 outfits. I say 'strictly' because I'm absolutely sure a member visting who spotted more than 5 would definitely report it!

I drove north through Aberdeen, then past Ellon, Mintlaw, and arrived here around 1230. The site is near the main Fraserburgh to Inverness road, the A98. Fraserburgh is 6 miles away.

I was met by the farmer who lives here. A very nice old bloke, a real Doric speaking local who was very interesting. I spotted his absolutely mint MF135 tractor and he said he had another 20 or so! Interesting, he didn't have a grey fergie, but he told me his neighbouring farmer has one.

A great little site. On a slight slope, but the pitches all seem level enough. What is special about this site is that each pitch has it's own power supply (!) and individual drinking water point (!!). There is also a WC for the exclusive use of the folk staying. The only thing it doesn't have is a shower, but for a few days, an alternative can suffice. I now carry a spare dedicated flexi bucket, a sponge, and some baby bath!

The site feels sheltered with open views to the north.

After pitching, thought I'd head into Fraserburgh for some supplies and take the opportunity to walk the dogs on the beach.

Fraserburgh has a brilliant golden sand beach which goes on for miles.

Looking to the harbour area.

I took a drive and it the town has certainly went downhill. The outskirts have been developed with many new housing estates, and there is now the usual Tesco, Asda, etc, but the Town Centre strikes me as nothing more than a dump.

Took the coastal road through Sandhaven and stopped at Rosehearty for a walk with the dogs. Both places well kept, but very bleak and subdued. The architecture in this area is striking. Beautiful rows of single storey cottages, but instead of facing the road like normally seen, these houses are built like west coast cottages. The gable ends face the sea, very much the principle of 'shoulder to the wind'. When you drive along the narrow streets, it's the gable ends you see, not the fronts.

Rosehearty is not the fishing centre it must have been at one time.

Nice well kept harbour.

The only issue with staying on a farm, is that it's a farm, hence limited opportunities for dog walking in the immediate area. The farmer suggested that I could walk round the perimeter of his hay field across the road, or he recommended the minor road past Tyrie school.

The field looked very overgrown, so I done the road walk. Very quiet with no traffic, so a chance to let the dogs off the lead. I could see my van from the road.

What is commendable for these little sites is the effort they put in to make it a good experience.


  1. Nice commentary. Intrigued by the other tractors the owner has in store. I don't know that area, including "the Broch", well at all. You and Andrew spent a few summer holidays up there I think. It reads as though it has deteriorated. That is sad as, generally, fishing remains lucrative and I would have thought the town would have benefited from oil and gas. Maybe its condition explains why Ruben's bosses based themselves in Ellon. Watch yourself tonight, Iain, as those strong winds come in (I think it's been called Storm Hector) to impact the North East. Maybe tie down the dugs before you turn in. Oh, and please, use the baby wipes liberally!

    1. Yes, I spent many summers here, including a wee bit romance too. "Lorraine, Lorraine, the 1-2-5 train" is still ringing in my ears! Thanks for the concern, but I'm in a nice sheltered spot here. Bring on the storm!


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