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Curlywee and Lamachan Hill
by trekpete » Fri Apr 01, 2011 5:24 pm
Route description: Lamachan Hill and Curleywee, Glen Trool
Grahams included on this walk: Lamachan Hill
Donalds included on this walk: Curleywee, Lamachan Hill
Date walked: 27/03/20115 people think this report is great. Register or Login free to be able to rate and comment on reports (as well as access 1:25000 mapping).
Hills: Curlywee, Lamachan Hill and Mulldonoch
Present: Just Me
Weather: Hazy sunshine at start, then dull but clearer air and burst’s of sunshine. Cool wind.
Distance: 9mls approx
Height Ascended: 2200ft approx
Time taken: 8hrs
After last w/e’s snow plodding on Creagan na Beinne I fancied some easier walking this w/e. Having not been in The Galloway Hills for a while I opted to return to a route that I never got the views from on my last trip. Only being 53mls from home to the car park at Bruce’s Stone I was off walking by 8am.
Sun starting to break through .
You head off East and drop down towards Buchan, ignoring the path to The Merrick. Cross over the bridge and keep walking East.
The track leads you on a nice easy downhill walk through some nice woodland.
A small path forks off to the right down towards the Glenhead Burn.
You can carry straight on by the derelict Glenhead steading as both routes lead to the same point anyway.
If you take the fork, it brings you to a wooden bridge which takes you across to The Southern Upland Way.
Turn left and across another wooden bridge.
A short walk brings you back onto the main track which heads slowly uphill now. Last time I was here the cleared area on the left was still forest .
It was very pleasant walking up here this morning. No wind, no snow and fairly mild with only bird song and the distant sound of burbling streams for company .
A look back towards Glen Trool as the sun breaks through.
You enter back into a section of forest just after Sheil Burn. Sunrays not guaranteed .
Easy walking as the track continues slowly upwards and gives a good view back to Mulldonoch.
As you reach the top of the track you come across one of The 7 Stanes, The Giant Axe Head which overlooks Loch Dee. Info here http://www.7stanes.com/what-are-the-7stanes-c205.html
It was a nice spot to have a 10min break and enjoy the surroundings, before heading up South to gain the North ridge of White Hill. No sign of any path, so I just charged up through some rough tussocks of grass, well, more of a struggle really .
As I was taking a shot back to Craiglee a mountain biker appeared and pulled up. I was to meet him later on the summit of Lamachan.
This grass was nearly as bad as last weeks snow plod, thankfully it was short lived. Bennanbrack at the back here.
Once up on the ridge a faint path leads on towards the summit of White Hill. A little lochan makes a good foreground for a shot to Bennanbrack and Lamachan Hill.
As I reached the summit I startled some dozing Goats who scarpered pdq before I got any shots of them. Plenty of rocks here to shelter out the wind for a break which was picking up and had a cool edge on it. The flip side of this wind was the haze cleared and the views got better.
Zoom to The Merrick.
Taking in the view to the North to The Merrick, Craiglee and The Dungeons.
Easy walking across to Curlywee now.
Looking back to White Hill.
Pose on the summit of Curlywee .
A couple of other walkers are hot on my heels.
It started to turn a bit duller with a right cold wind now, so the jacket went on and I settled down behind some rocks for a bite to eat. Some wild goats made an appearance in the distance, but just too far away to make changing my lens worthwhile. I had a quick word with the other walkers before they continued on their way to Lamachan Hill.
Curlywee is a fine viewpoint on to the surrounding hills, so I hung about waiting to see if the weather would pick up a little again. No major improvements, just a few bursts of sunlight racing across the hillside. Enough to get a decent shot .
Looking West from Curlwee to Lamachan Hill and Larg Hill in the background.
Heading down to the Nick of Curlywee.
A steep descent on grass or some scree brings you down and across the Nick before heading along the knobbly ridge towards Bennanbrack. You can go straight up onto the back of the ridge or skirt along the side to save a little bit of renascent, makes little difference really, as the walking is on dry grassy stuff most of the way.
A look back at Curlywee.
Another walker appears on Bennanbrack. Galloway hills are busy today .
As I made my way up to Bennanbrack 2 walkers with heavily laden packs decended over to my left, so I never got to enquire where they heading for the night, just a friendly wave of acknowledgement.
Looking West from Bennanbrack to Lamachann Hill and Cambrick Hill. Another walker can just be seen on the skyline.
A look back down the ridge to Curlywee.
Zoom to the summit.
Finnally arrived at the summit of Lamachan around 12.45pm. I have to admit it’s not the best summit around but the views on a clear day are pretty darned good. You can see The Lake District, the coast of Ireland and The Mull of Kintyre. I met the mountain biker I saw earlier in the day now, he was doing the same route as myself in reverse. We had lunch and passed the time of day discussing all the various routes around the Galloway Hills. After a while we went on our separate ways and I got the camera back in action.
Looking S/W to Larg Hill (should have nipped over) with The Mull of Galloway in the far left corner.
White Hill and Curlywee.
MTB walker on the ridge to Curlwee.
Zoom South to the River Cree and Wigtown Sands.
Zoom to Newton Stewart.
Nearly forgot the summit pose .
And one taking in the view East.
Time to head off North to the blip called Cambrick Hill. It really is just a blip on Lamachan Hill but as I got there some nice dappled sunlight light up the hills to the North .
Loch Neildricken, Craig Neildricken and Mullwharchar.
I was now making a beeline for Mulldonoch and decended steeply between rocky boulder fields and grass to NX425785. It was then a small uphill push to gain the summit of Mulldonoch.
A look back to Loch Dee.
Twin cairns on Mulldonoch with The Merrick behind on the left.
There was a faint path leading upto here but no sign of anything leading off in another direction. I never found any route description for doing this little add on hill, so it was time to make it up as I went along now. I didn’t fell like backtracking and going down by the side of Shiel Burn as I seemed to remember it was a pain the last time I done Lamachan. A quick look at the map and a nosy over the crags, I thought a route was possible heading straight for the shed you can see at Glenhead steading. You can just make out a splash of silver in the next photo. (Centre right)
It was a rough and steep descent at the start through rough heather covered rocks. You know the sort of thing, hidden holes waiting to break a leg now and again . Took my time and avoided a few crags at the start and eventually got to the tree line NX429792. There was a gap into a large felled area with a bit of a track visible in the clearing to make things easy going. It was also fairly warm now so the jacket was stashed away before I cooked myself.
You can see the track in the bottom right of the next photo.
I got onto the track and turned right to follow it down. It doubled back on itself and you come to an obvious t-junction. Take to the right and head East towards NX431793. The track continues on towards the Shiel Burn, but I though it was better to drop straight down to the junction at NX433795. Its through a new plantation of trees, so this route will eventually be a non starter in the future once the young trees grow a bit.
Once at the junction you are back on The Southern Upland Way and it’s just a pleasant stroll back to the car park.
Last shot of the day.
It was good to be walking with summer boots on and no weighty winter metal work to break your back. The walking was mostly on dry ground today which was a real good feeling after last w/e’s snow plodding in Perthshire. The Galloway Hills seem to be neglected by a lot of walkers intent on heading North. More fool them I say, as they are missing out on some wonderful walking, some of my best days have been wandering around down here in complete solitude. Meeting 5 others here today was a first for me apart from the hoards that head up The Merrick, normally you are lucky if you meet one other on a walk.
A top day out . Get yourself here.
by PeteR » Fri Apr 01, 2011 5:58 pm
by Theodocle » Fri Apr 01, 2011 6:40 pm
by PauloUK77 » Fri Apr 01, 2011 7:07 pm
by ChrisW » Sun Apr 03, 2011 6:24 pm
by malky_c » Sun Apr 03, 2011 8:33 pm
by jimandandrea » Sun Apr 03, 2011 9:00 pm
by trekpete » Mon Apr 04, 2011 6:04 pm
jimandandrea wrote:I confess we just drive past on our way North . However, after seeing your amazing pics we promise not to do it again espeically when we only live in Cumbria - no excuse.
They are almost in your backyard