So, The Book(s). Well, both books are set in size A5 optimised which means they are a bit smaller than A5 - pocket handy! Arran: Lesser Known Hill Routes was published on 1 November 2017 and Arran: Lochs and Lochans on 1 March 2020.
Arran: Lesser Known Hill Routes
There are 150 pages and over one hundred photos.
It comprises two sections. The first is, "Lesser Known Hill Routes" and the second is, "Trigging the Trigs".
Section one has 20 routes and then there are the 17 (+ 1) trig routes.
Most of the Lesser Known Hill Routes are routes where there is a very good chance you won't see another soul.
The trigs are just as challenging as some are located in pretty inaccessible places.
Even if you don't want to buy the book, don't hang about, come over to Arran and get into the hills.
On 8/5/18 I received an email from Dave. He told me that I'd said on pp143 that Ben Chonzie was the most easterly Munro. It is not! Mount Keen is the most easterly. My thanks to Dave and apologies to readers.
In my defence, I've run up both mountains and in an age related moment,simply got them mixed up. The anecdote in the book does indeed refer to Ben Chonzie.
Arran: Lochs and Lochans
This one has 120 pages, over 90 photos and little maps for each route.
I decided to write this book for Scotland's Year of Coasts and Waters 2020. It is, as Visit Scotland say, "... a celebration of our remarkable coasts, lochs, rivers and canals and all they contribute to our wonderful way of life".
Like Lesser Known Hill Routes, the book has two sections. The first comprises the descriptions of walks to the 28 lochs whilst the second describes ten short walks (I've termed them, 'Low Level Trails').
Some of the lochs are well known and frequently visited but most are remote, relatively unknown and almost never seen by a human being.
The following are some of the comments I've received:
Lesser Known Hill Routes
"Amongst the plethora of walking books about my favourite Scottish island, this one stands out for the inclusion of lesser known tracks and hills, a bizarre alternative to Munro bagging ("Trigging") and quirky humour. Alex Drain has brought a wealth of experience, knowledge and passion to his writing, which is leavened by extensive pictures of weird rock formations, cute pet dog poses and a long-suffering wife. Recommended!" Anne
"Easy and enjoyable to read, very informative. An excellent guide to walks around the island!" Hannah
“This book shows there’s more to Arran than Goatfell and other famous ridge walks and is aimed at everyone and all abilities. There’s even a section describing walks to all 17 of the island’s trig points.” The Scots Magazine
"A very enjoyable book with great ideas for interesting walks around Arran." Mrs MacIntosh
"This is a great wee book at a great price. I've walked on Arran many times and thought I knew most of the walks but this wee gem of a book has many surprises in store for all walkers. I bought 2 other copies for my son in laws and both have given it the thumbs up." Don
Lochs and Lochans
"Loving the informal tone of the writing; my kinda book." Scott