Talks and Presentations
In January 2007, Greenock Philosophical Society presented Ian Barr with a plaque to mark a unique achievement – Ian had given illustrated lectures to the society every year (unbroken) for 30 years. Ian has given talks to nearly 200 different groups from all over Scotland and occasionally in England, many of whom asked him back again and again. However, this long term association with the Greenock Philosophical Society is unprecedented.
To mark the 150th anniversary of the Greenock Philosophical Society in 2012, and Ian’s unique contribution to the society for one fifth of its lifetime, they have instituted the "Ian Barr Memorial Lecture" to recognise his welcome and popular fixture in the Society’s syllabus.
The 2013 lecture will be given by Ian's son, Gordon Barr, and tells the story of the man behind the mountains himself...
Traveller, Not Tourist: The Adventurous Life of Ian Barr
Friday, 11th January, 2013 - 7.30pm in the Watt Hall, McLean Memorial Museum, Greenock
The inaugural lecture in 2011 was given by Hugh Kerr, a friend and fellow teacher. Travel will be the topic for these lectures, and Hugh talked of a Kayak Expedition in 2010, replicating an expedition in 1885 by Thomas Hiram Holding and friends. Both groups paddled from Greenock, down the Clyde to the Kyles of Bute, Lochgilphead, Oban and Loch Etive. From there they went by train to Loch Lomond, down the River Leven back into the Clyde, and then back to Greenock. Even with modern equipment and far superior knowledge and skills, this was a challenging expedition for Hugh’s group, and his account of both adventures well worthy of a lecture in memory of Ian Barr.
Below is a list of just some of the presentations Ian offered these many groups - a mix of personal trips, Scout and school expeditions.
1. DESERTS AND CANYONS OF SOUTH WEST U.S.A.
Camping and hiking trip visiting National Parks in Arizona, including Bryce, Zion, Monument Valley and Grand Canyon, etc.
2. CONDORS OVER COTOPAXI
Trekking in the Andes of Ecuador, with attempt on volcanic peak of Cotopaxi.
3. SLOW BOAT TO TIMBUKTU
Travels in Mali in West Africa, including trek in Dogon country and three days down River Niger to legendary city of Timbuktu.
4. KILIMANJARO - AFRICA’S ICY SUMMIT
Travels in Tanzania, followed by ascent of Africa’s highest mountain, Kilimanjaro, at 19,340 feet.
5. CHALLENGE OF THE CAUCASUS
Joint Russian/Scottish expedition to the Caucasus Mountains in Southern Russia to climb Mount Elbrus, Europe’s highest summit, at 18,481 feet.
6. “KEEP MONT BLANC ON YOUR LEFT!”
The classic Tour de Mont Blanc, from Chamonix in France, via Italy and Switzerland. ( IBEX Mountain Group.)
7. THE ENCHANTED MOUNTAINS
Expedition to Los Encantados in Spanish Pyrenees. (PGHS GEOG-EX.)
8. PEAKS AND PASSES IN EASTERN PYRENEES
Expedition to Carlit Range of Eastern Pyrenees in France. (7th Paisley JNI Scout Group)
9. JOTUNHEIMEN - LAND OF THE GIANTS
Expedition to Jotunheimen Mountains in Central Norway. (PGHS GEOG-EX)
10. APPROACH TO EVEREST
Trek from Katmandu to Base Camp of Mount Everest at 18,00 feet.
11. SPITSBERGEN - LAND OF POLAR BEARS, GLACIERS AND MIDNIGHT SUN.
Expedition to explore Spitsbergen in the Arctic.
12. HIGH ATLAS TRAVERSE - MULES AND MINT TEA IN MOROCCO’S MOUNTAINS
200 mile trek through Atlas Mountains with ascent of M’Goun and Toubkal peaks.
13. MONGOLIA - LAND OF THE BIG SKY
Explorations in this remote country, from the Gobi Desert to northern mountains.
Travels by bus, foot, camel, horse and yak across the steppe.
14. LANDSCAPES AND PEOPLES OF THE ETHIOPIAN HIGHLANDS
Journey off the beaten track in Northern Ethiopia.
15. THROUGH ANCIENT NUBIA - ACROSS THE DESERTS OF NORTHERN SUDAN
Journey up the River Nile from Cairo to Khartoum, visiting well known Egyptian sites and relatively unknown Sudanese ones lost in the desert.
16. SAND DUNES AND SEA WEED IN THE SAHARA
Trekking in dunes of Mauritania and journey by vehicles across this empty land.
17. DESERT TO DELTA AROUND THE KALAHARI
Journey from sand dunes of S. Namibia to Okavango Delta in N. Botswana