A walk on the 'wild' side at Portencross on New Year's Day was the perfect way to escape the festivities and enjoy a sunshine walk, writes Calum Corral.

There are few more scenic places than the impressive restored castle looming in the distance, next to cottage houses loaded with creels and all things nautical, and the open countryside and beautiful views stretching across to Arran, Wee Cumbrae, and Millport.

As I approached the old pier, which has included the Waverley as a visitor in the past, it was perhaps a sign of the times that there were more photographers than anglers harbourside, and if anything the area has become a haven for amateur snappers, and even drones.

While some were no doubt lucky enough to receive the new flying devices in their Christmas stocking, the castle is a popular spot for its aerial photography judging from videos posted on youtube.

During my last visit to Portencross, I met two people who had travelled all the way from Lanarkshire to get drone footage of the castle on a blustery and cloudy evening.

I was impressed with how the device was able to cope with the gusts, and still managed to do a full circle of the scene from up above, as you can simultaneously watch the impressive footage from a safe vicinity on the ground on a mobile phone, before it safely landed with no problem at all.

Although there were no drones during my new year visit, there were plenty of photographers, no doubt somewhat disappointed that a missing plank from the pier has now been covered up, as it often offered spectacular sea spray shots up during the stormy weather.

However, there were still plenty of good vantage points to capture the Clyde in its majesty. Indeed, standing on the pier, the fresh breeze provided an invigorating experience while admiring the stunning perspective, and the view upwards to Millport was particularly vibrant and clear.

A colourful and inquisitive wagtail was hopping about the rocks, looking for any unlikely morsels to eat, as I headed back towards Seamill, and on one of the adjacent fields, there was the a crowd of young calves enjoying the good weather, and fooling about with each other.

Some playful fighting ensued between two of them, and it was quite a sight to see, just ask the sheep on the field opposite who all stood to rapt attention and watched.

The only blot on the beautiful landscape was the cable laying ship in front of Ardneil Bay, and yet another reminder that the neighbouring Hunterston is a hive of industrial activity.

National Grid and ScottishPower Transmission are carrying out a joint venture to build the Western Link, a £1 billion project which will help to bring renewable energy from Scotland to homes and businesses in Wales and England.