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Limited thrills on Wideford Hill

Limited thrills on Wideford Hill

Postby thepigguy » Mon Mar 22, 2021 6:10 pm

Route description: Wideford Hill and Chambered Cairn, Kirkwall

Sub 2000' hills included on this walk: Wideford Hill (Mainland Orkney)

Date walked: 17/03/2021

Time taken: 2.5 hours

Distance: 9.1 km

Ascent: 232m

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My car needed a new exhaust so I took the boat into Kirkwall for the first time in four months and was glad for a change of scene, even if it was only "the toon".

Wideford Hill is arguably the easiest Scottish Marilyn. There's a road to the clutch of aerials and transmitters at the top and you can touch the summit toposcope by leaning out your car. The actual summit is just the other side of the toposcope in some reedy ground so you might need to get out and take four or five paces to make it there.

I've walked it a few times and it's a pleasant, if unexciting outing, although the views can be fantastic on a a clear day - and not bad on a misty, hazy one like this was.

The route is straightforward, the Walkhighlands map is as good a way as any, although I varied it slightly. You can also approach the hill from the road that divides it from Keelylang, although there is no parking place nearby and it's a fair trudge along the road to Finstown and the nearest bus stop.

Tarmac path immediately after leaving the road

Escaping from Kirkwall's suburbs and heading past the golf course

wideford 3.jpg
Turn left here

Nice and dry today - a treat for March

wideford 6.jpg
Once back on the road to the top, I took a right turn onto a rough path

The path divides. I took the righthand option

wideford 8.jpg
Heading up to the summit area - lovely!

wideford 9.jpg
Looking north to the Bay of Firth

wideford 10.jpg
Rigs at rest in Scapa Flow

wideford 11.jpg
Teabreak at the toposcope, looking at Keelylang, with Ward Hill (Mainland) and Mid Hill behind. The Hoy Hills were visible in the haze with the naked eye.

wideford 12.jpg
No visit to the cairn today

The sun comes out on the way down to Kirkwall

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Location: Westray, Orkney

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