Tuesday, 12 February 2019

Moffat- Gallow Hill, Oakrigg and Beattock Hill

11 February 2019
 
Participants: Neil and Ben
Where: Gallow Hill (Moffat), 252m/827', P 39m, Tump, OS 78, NT 087 067, Oakrigg, 144m/472', P 32m, Tump, OS 78, NT 095 031 and Beattock Hill, 263m/863', P 45m, Tump, OS 78, NT 065 020
 
Spring was definitely in the air, it was a beautiful day, the snowdrops were out and the colours were at their best. I hadn't been in Moffat for ages, a study of the hill bagging site showed that there were 3 Tumps to be had close to the town so off we went. I parked in Dundanion Road at the foot of Gallow Hill. I wonder how many Gallow Hills there are in Scotland? Anyway, this one has a track going up it which today was quite muddy. Apparently the whole hill used to be tree covered but those at the top have been cut down although it has all been replanted- but with broadleaf rather than conifers. So the views might not be quite so good in years to come. Hart Fell is well seen from here.....
 
 
as are the hills on the north side of the Ettrick valley.....
 
 
I then made my way back to the car and found the side road going south from the town which is the starting point for Oakrigg. The Southern Upland Way crosses the hill and there was ample parking beside the Barnhill bridge. This hill was very easy, over a stile, follow the SUW, over another stile and across a field to the high point.....
 
 
the view to Moffat.....
 
 
to the north Ettrick hills.....
 
 
and to Scaw'd Fell, a Marilyn right at the head of the Ettrick valley.....
 
 
As Ben had had to miss out on Oakrigg as the stiles were too steep for him, we went back into Moffat and had a wander round the park and then I went for a coffee. Hard work this hill walking! Then it was off on the short car journey past Beattock and up a road that goes into the forest area east of Queensberry, Beattock Hill was another easy one as the road passes high up. The problem for Ben on this one was a barbed wire fence but at least he saw the high point.....
 
 
Looking to Queensberry....
 
 
to Hart Fell.....
 
 
and to Hart Fell and the Ettrick hills.....
 
 

Thursday, 7 February 2019

Greendykes Bing and Greendykes Bing South

7 February 2019
 
Participants: Just me
Where: Greendykes Bing, 185m/607', P 88m, TuMP, OS 65, NT 087 738 and Greendykes Bing South Top, 128m/419', P 43m, TuMP, OS 65, NT 091 733
 
 
A grass covered plateau that could be anywhere but is in fact the summit area of the old Greendykea Bing near Broxburn, West Lothian.
 
Greendykes Bing is a vast waste heap composed of residue from the destructive distillation of shale to extract oil. It has been designated as a Scheduled Historic Monument as one of the very few intact spent shale bings left in central Scotland and to prevent it being quarried as hard-core for road construction. The shale oil industry was locally important for about a century and its pioneer, James "Paraffin" Young (1811-83) developed refining techniques still used in the oil industry today. The operating company was the Broxburn Oil Company which was active from the 1860's to around 1940.
 
It is also a TuMP and because of its history, one of the more interesting.
 
I parked on the B8020 beside the Corecut factory. The main track up the bing started opposite, steep in places and deeply rutted due to the many trail bikers that obviously use the bing for entertainment. Some of the drops are amazing, not for me! I wasn't really prepared for the scenery on top but it shows the scale of the bing. I wandered about for a while, no trail riders today, I had it to myself. Some photographs.....
 
 



The bing has a south top, also a TuMP. There looked to be some steep drops between the two so I went back the way I came and drove round to East Mains Industrial Estate in Broxburn and tackled bing mark 2 from there. This was much muddier lower down but again I found a reasonable way up to a much smaller plateau. The main bing could be seen well from here....

 
Some photos from the south top.....
 



Not the usual hills but definitely a hill. I must also research more into the shale oil industry.
 
 
 

Friday, 1 February 2019

Mount Zion (Milngavie)

1 February 2019
 
Participants: Just me
Where: Mount Zion, 171m/561', P 40m, Tump, OS 64, NS 532 774
 
It was a very foggy morning but turned into a gloriously sunny afternoon. Mount Zion is the highest point of the Hilton Park golf course and I had been waiting for a day when the course was ice bound and there would be no golfers around. Today was that day. As well as the ground being rock hard, it had been snowing in that area so the course was definitely unplayable. So I had it to myself.
 
I left my car in the main car park at Mugdock as the road beyond that point was fairly iced up. This meant that some of the early part of the walk was downhill but it made for a longer and better day. About 200 yards after the bridge over the Allander Water, I left the road and went through a gate into the golf course. The view up the fairways towards the highest point.....
 
 
Approaching the summit area, the golf course extends beyond it.....
 
 
The trig with Dumgoyne in the background.....
 
 
Craigallion Loch and Dumgoyne. The West Highland Way runs through the valley and along beside the loch.....
 
 
More Campsie hills.....
 
 
The view west.....
 
 
and looking back down the fairways.....