Tuesday, 23 February 2021

 22 February 2021
Participants: Just me
Where: Forth and Clyde Canal, Auchendavie to Bishopbriggs sections.

Still in lock down and still waiting for results of hospital tests so I remain unable to drive. But it looks as though covid restrictions might be ceased soon so I decided that I had better attempt to keep in some sort of shape! A walk along the canal path looked good, taking my time to notice points of interest. This section of the canal is part of the Thomas Muir Heritage Trail. Thomas Muir of Huntershill (1785-1799) was  an active member of "The Friends of the People", a political reform movement at a time when very few people had the right to vote. Muir was tried and found guilty of sedition and was sentenced to 14 years in Botany Bay in Australia. 

I started from home so joined the path at the Auchendavie Aqueduct at the east end of Kirkintilloch.

The start of the walk looking east- I was going west!


Utility pipe over canal:


At Hillhead Lock and bridge:



Shortly after, the canal crossed an aqueduct over the Luggie Water. The water was culverted under the aqueduct and the Campsie branch railway line used what is now the canal path. The Kirkintilloch railway station, now gone, was nearby. I didn't divert today to look at this unusual (a plaque at the side of the path says a "Unique") bridge from below but that is now on my list for further exploration. I have passed this sign many times but never stopped before to read the inscription, so knew nothing about the bridge or its history.


The path then passed two bridges in quick succession, the modern Nicholson bridge carrying the bypass and the Townhead bridge which is a new concrete structure on old bridge abutments:



The next bridge was also modern, a pedestrian bridge over the canal at the marina:


After passing this I reached open country again. Another mile or so saw me the Glasgow Road bridge beside The Stables pub. No drink stop for me today as it was sadly closed at present under Covid restrictions. During the early 1,800's, the building was used as a stable for horses working the canal boats:




The view was a bit more open on the next stage to the Hungryside bridge and by diverting slightly off the path I could get views of the Campsie Fells:





Getting closer to the end of the walk at Cadder with it's bridge and impressive church. Thomas Muir was a church elder here:




Here, I wasn't too far from the main road and the bus home. The whole section is a walk of about 5 miles.


 




Monday, 14 December 2020

St Flanan's Hill

 

Various dates

Participants: Neil and Ben

Where: St Flanan's Hill, overlooking the Forth and Clyde canal between Kirkintilloch and Twechar

I'm little further forward with my health issues, still waiting to get further tests. The only hill that I've attempted so far is this little wooded one that I can get to easily from home. I had done it a few times during lock down and it was particularly good in late autumn when the foliage was at its best. The hill is not named on any map that I can find so I've called it after the local area. It seems to be just below Tump height and there are paths up and around it. I suspect that it is mainly the remains of an old spoil tip as this was a coal mining area and there were also brick works nearby. There are remains of old buildings on the lower slopes.

There are two approaches for me- along the south bank of the canal or by a track through the fields from the east end of Kirkintilloch. Looking at the hill across the fields with the Campsie Fells in the background.....

Getting closer.....


Ben at the summit.....



Looking south to Gartshore Bing (Tump).....


Another view of St Flanan's Hill from the north bank of the canal.....




Saturday, 26 September 2020

Another hill walking break......

 I've been having occasional light dizzy spells for a couple of years, nothing to worry about according to my Dr. However.....I was out with Ben on his daily walk when I took a really bad turn and ended face down in the vegetation. Back home, I was walking up the stairs when I fainted again. To cut a long story short, I ended up in hospital for a week. Unable to pin down the exact cause, I am now waiting for an out patient appointment so that they can investigate further. Meantime, I have given up driving so any hill walking that I do will be extremely limited, especially as I don't fancy using public transport while Covid is on the go. Oh well!

Monday, 21 September 2020

A Visit to Fife: Clatto Hill, Kellie Law, Dalginch Hill, Hill of Beath

 1 September 2020

Participants: Just me

Where: Clatto Hill, 168m/551', P 56m, Tump, OS 59, NO 436157; Kellie Law, 184m, 640', P 

46m,Tump, OS 59, NO 518064; Dalginch Hill, 138m/453', P 41m, Tump, OS 59, NO 311025; and Hill of Beath, 240m/787', P 82m, Tump, OS 58, NT 138901.

I didn't know it at the time but this was to be my last hill walk for a while (see next post). It was a beautiful day and I had planned a route to take in three Tumps in the East Neuk of Fife, starting with Clatto Hill south east of Cupar. There was a narrow road running alongside the east side of the hill and as it was to be a very short walk, I parked at a field entrance just below the start of the track to a mast. As expected, it was a fine viewpoint. The trig with St Andrews in the background.....

Looking west into Fife, Norman's Law is the hill in the background.....

East to Guardbridge and the Eden estuary.....

I then headed south to Kellie Law, which I had hoped to climb from the road to the west, however, there was a herd of young cows in the field which I would have had to go through. So, plan B, round to Carnbee to the east side of the hill where I met the farmer who said that I could park in a field entrance. Good tracks ran from there to the summit, a very pleasant walk and clearly the best approach.....

It was a very fine viewpoint. Looking east.....


West to Largo Law with Stuc a'Chroin and Ben Vorlich just visible on the horizon....


Largo Law again.....


South over the Forth to the Pentland Hills.....


The Forth estuary heading round to St Andrews.....


I then headed west, through Leven and Kennoway and towards Markinch. There was a Tump just off the road between the latter two villages and it would have been a shame not to have stopped! Dalginch Hill has a couple of tops of equal height with a trig in the valley between them, although it is really just a field with a couple of bumps in it.




That was to be it for the day. However, as I was driving home and passing close to Hill of Beath, I decided to take the opportunity to climb it also.I parked in the car park for the Dalbeath Marshes nature reserve off the B917 and followed paths towards the hill. Unfortunately, I missed a gate on the left into a field, the route that I should have taken and found myself contouring across a steep bramble and thorn covered slope to get back on track. Looking up (taken from the correct route on the way down).....


This is an isolated hill therefore provides fine views. Looking down to Hill of Beath village from about the half way point.....


The trig, looking to the Ochil Hills.....


The Queensferry crossing and the Forth.....


Dunfermline and the Forth.....


Loch Fitty just in view.....


A great day out.


Monday, 31 August 2020

Dareduff Hill

30 August 2020

Participants: Just me

Where: Dareduff Hill, 269m/883', P 44m, Tump, OS 64, NS 457 525

Another of the Renfrewshire/Ayrshire Tumps, this one should really have been left to the winter! The trees were reasonably spaced out even although I missed the ride that I should have taken on the way in- the start was a bit further along the clearing between the bits of forestry than I expected but I found it OK on the way back. The clearing itself was pretty vegetatious however. Nevertheless I managed to find the high point without difficulty, it was situated above a small pond. This one will be good if they ever chop down the trees. Memo to self- a nice open hill with a good view next.





Sunday, 30 August 2020

Creag na Gaoith (Crieff)

29 August 2020

Participants: Just me

Where: Creag na Gaoith, 159m/523', P 87m, Tump, OS 52, NN 830 221

There are a group of three Tumps west of Crieff and north of the River Earn, I had climbed two of them before but the middle of the three, Creag na Gaoith had still to be bagged. The shortest route was from the north but I decided to take the longer route starting at McCrostie Park in Crieff and following a good track alongside the river Earn. This included Lady Mary's Walk, a beautiful stretch of countryside through an avenue of trees with occasional views south to the Marilyn, Torlum. I had set off from home early as the best of the weather was promised in the morning and it certainly lived up to that forecast.....




After the river bank walk, I joined another path which took me uphill to the col between Creag na Gaoith and its eastern neighbour, Laggan Hill. The trees on my objective today looked rather dense from here.....


Looking back to Torlum.....


This path then joined another running along the ridge from Laggan Hill (everything was well signposted) and I followed that to beneath my hill where I found that the trees were in fact widely spaced and easy to climb through. There was a good view west to Mor Bheinn from here.....


The climb was easy until just before the high point which was covered in head high ferns! It's in here somewhere.....


I returned by the same route, an excellent walk.