TUMBLING water over moss-covered rocks, the burbling noise of the Tillicoultry Burn so over-powering that it almost subsumed the gentle warble of a nearby dipper.

Tillicoultry Glen is such a tranquil place, and I sat by the burnside for a while, breathing-in nature's serenity.

It is hard to imagine that at one time this burn powered eight textile mills through the use of an intricate dam and lade system.

Now, it is the nature that reigns supreme, and that is how it should be.

On a rocky cleft by the far bank, the shiny green leaves of hart's tongue fern shone out at me.

The micro-climate in this sheltered and narrow gorge is ideal for mosses, liverworts and ferns, which flourish in the perpetually moist conditions.

In an ash tree above me, a small party of blue and great tits bounded through the branches, calling excitedly.

Tillicoultry Glen is the perfect place for these birds to forage, with there being an abundance of invertebrates sheltering within its protective embrace.

I continued on my way and soon reached high open ground above the trees.

A robin posed momentarily for a photo, and in the distance, I spotted a peregrine falcon swooping along the steep scarp on the hunt for wood pigeons and jackdaws.

As I descended back down towards Tillicoultry, the gurgling of the burn once more grew in intensity; a soothing noise that sung and danced across the damp winter air.