EVEN in the long, hot summer of 1976, you had to be a hardy soul to brave the near-freezing waters of Loch Lomond.

With the whole of the country baking in drought conditions, the loch provided a handy cooling off spot for visitors, with the then still-narrow roads on either side often nose to tail with day trippers' cars.

All you needed for a great day out was a tartan rug, a picnic basket and a flask of tea (or perhaps a couple of can of beer, which you could cool in the loch).

Despite the beach-like scene, you just know the bank would have echoed to the cries of concerned parents, shouting: "Don't go in too far, it gets deep very quickly."

As darkness fell, and the dreaded midges came out, it would be time to pack up for the drive nack home to Glasgow.