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Ben Newe and the ravages of Arwen

PostPosted: Tue Jan 25, 2022 3:36 pm
by Andy Milne
I had just been up ladylea Hill and hadn't noticed any ill effects from Storm Arwen, so decided to tag Ben Newe onto the day.

I had read in other reports that the track to the car park was badly potholed and great care should be taken. Either this track has been repaired or other folk haven't been used to driving on the potholed roads of Aberdeen and the Shire, as it was better than some of the 'proper' roads I have driven on.

Once parked up, there is a nice big waymarker post with a blue band on pointing you along the main track. Heading up here there was significant damage from Storm Arwen. In the @1/2km from the car park to the hairpin right bend on the route, there were 10 places where trees had come down across this track. Some of these were easy to skirt round, but a few became quite difficult to figure out a safe way past them. Some of the trees were across the track, others were laid full length down it. This section of the route took much longer than it otherwise would have done, and was like an obstacle course in places trying to get round the tress.
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Arwen damage
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The forest has been cleared now, and as you progress along Stage 2 in the route, these trees have gone, but the track is the main one, leading you to the fence in Stage 3, which takes you up to the trig point and a shelter with a seat, with good views about .
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Trig point

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As you leave the trig point, following the path down, the forestry marked in Stage 5 of the route is no longer there. There were a couple of paths heading down, and after a short while I ignored a fork off to the right and continued down, as I could see I was heading for an intersection of 3 main tracks.
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Cleared forestry

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The junction I should have turned right at

Thinking I was on the track I wanted, I started ahead, but quickly realised, that with the forestry gone the marker post I should have seen was no longer there and I now had the Hill of Greenstile on my right and not my left.
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Quickly back to the junction of tracks, and headed along until a marker post was seen on my left. This marker post is virtually at the demarkation of the cleared forestry and those trees that have been left. The path is obvious and winds along to the fence, which you keep on your left as you descend down the slope. This brought me out onto a well churned up track, but climbing onto the bank you can see the steps leading down to the next track.
Continuing straight ahead, I followed this track until it began to head back into the forest. As I was in a more open strip of woodland, I headed down, quickly joining another path that lead me right back to behind the car park. There was another tree down, so skirting this to me left brought me out right beside the car park.