walkhighlands

Share your personal walking route experiences in Scotland, and comment on other peoples' reports.
Warning Please note that hillwalking when there is snow lying requires an ice-axe, crampons and the knowledge, experience and skill to use them correctly. Summer routes may not be viable or appropriate in winter. See winter information on our skills and safety pages for more information.

Testing the Water

Testing the Water


Postby Sgurr » Thu Jan 27, 2022 7:09 pm

Date walked: 27/01/2022

5 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).

I had been getting bored with walking from home, but there was little I could do about it, since I didn’t have a driving license. I had a reminder from the DVLA that I needed an eye test in November. My sister said “That’s odd, your birthday is in May, I’ve just got a reminder for a January birthday. Check it.” I never like being bossed about by my elder sister, so it was a week or more until I did, and then discovered that I had been driving illegally since May. The new license took seven weeks to come from the eye-test while I was having nightmares about having to go and live in bus-land. When my father-in-law was finally put off the road, he used to drive his car up and down his very short drive, and then he would drag himself onto a bus, any bus. Since he couldn’t read their labels, each trip was a magical mystery tour. Would this be my plight? Then, the license arrived. First a visit to see daughter and grand-kids, then I could try a hill.
January 27th was a perfect day. I had read of someone who had not only done the Seven Fife Marilyns (as I had) but the top ten highest Fife hills. I had toyed with the idea of adding his Knock Hill, Saline Hill and Lumbennie hill to my round as he had, so this was a reconnoitre .
It didn’t start well. The lady at the farm at the bottom of the zig-zag track up Knock Hill said I couldn’t park there. It was private land and the tractors were in and out all the time. She directed me back to the Knock Hill racing circuit car park.
Image

It didn’t add a great deal to the walk
Image

She also told me that the path up the hill from the door was off limits: that was private too.
Image

I remember climbing that way when I had been bagging all the Fife trig points, but we couldn’t have met anyone.
She directed me to the “right of way” going past the farm. The gate looked a bit unfriendly, so I just climbed it.
Image

As I had thought of coming back that way, I set off. The muddy path turned into a climb, and I encountered a fence. There was no opening in it as might be expected in a “right of way”, so I climbed it.
Image[/url]

ATV tracks followed the cleft in the hill.
Image

By then I was regretting forgetting to bring my stick, and also forgetting to change my photochromatic glasses…everything looked black. I took off my woolly hat and pulled my hood down which improved things a little.
At the top are masts, but it was possible to take a photo without getting them in.
Image

Looking ahead to East Cairn Hill and Saline Hill
Image

I was sure I remembered reading a TR on these hills, possibly Fife Flyer, and should have checked how they did it. I just went straight down without a path and hit the drainage ditch flowing downhill. It had been newly dug out with steep muddy sides and what looked like old fencing the other side.
Image

I walked upstream until a wooden extension to the earlier fence I had climbed went over the ditch
It was slow walk squelching through the rushes and my boots got filthy.
Image[/url]

It wasn’t quite such a steep pull as Knock Hill
Image[/url]

Nearly at East Cairn I spotted the dread barbed wire, so sat down to have lunch. Looking back.
Image

Had I been with R, one of us would have stripped off a fleece and added a sitting mat, and we would have got over one way or another
.However, I have developed a new wimpishness, and decided that the shadows were growing long, and it was time to go home.
Image

The thought of having to phone for help while tangled in barbed wire was not appealing.
Image

Another very wet section before I could get into reasonable walking and another crossing of the ditch in the same place.

It’s unfair to judge these sheep because they look like thugs, but I far prefer the black faced ones
Image

So I don’t think I will be adding these hills to the 7 Marilyns. Friends have already contacted me to suggest coming too in the summer and making it a fund raiser and having done them three times now, why not add a fourth?
User avatar
Sgurr
Munro compleatist
 
Posts: 5314
Munros:282   Corbetts:222
Grahams:219   Donalds:89
Sub 2000:569   Hewitts:141
Wainwrights:166   Islands:58
Joined: Nov 15, 2010
Location: Fife

Re: Testing the Water

Postby rockhopper » Thu Jan 27, 2022 9:02 pm

Quite a challenge, well done - barbed wire, bogs, drainage ditches, private tracks, and gangster sheep - can see why you decided against adding them on. Still, at least it was nice day to get out and so much better than working from home :roll: - cheers :)
User avatar
rockhopper
 
Posts: 7026
Munros:282   Corbetts:222
Grahams:81   Donalds:89
Sub 2000:15   Hewitts:2
Wainwrights:3   Islands:19
Joined: Jun 1, 2009
Location: Glasgow

Re: Testing the Water

Postby Graeme D » Thu Jan 27, 2022 9:36 pm

Sgurr wrote:It’s unfair to judge these sheep because they look like thugs,


Not unfair at all - that one in the middle looks like evil personified! :shock:
User avatar
Graeme D
 
Posts: 3773
Munros:237   Corbetts:117
Grahams:68   Donalds:22
Sub 2000:57   Hewitts:36
Wainwrights:27   Islands:6
Joined: Oct 17, 2008
Location: Perth

Re: Testing the Water

Postby dogplodder » Fri Jan 28, 2022 2:07 pm

Respect for taking all that on - and at least you know the leave them out next time. 8)
User avatar
dogplodder
 
Posts: 3894
Munros:238   Corbetts:66
Grahams:18   
Sub 2000:28   Hewitts:4
Wainwrights:9   Islands:23
Joined: Jul 16, 2011

Re: Testing the Water

Postby Fife Flyer » Fri Jan 28, 2022 8:36 pm

Excellent stuff, well done for getting out.
Interesting that you did the hills in the opposite direction, they are probably some of the better "Tumps" in Fife.
One thing we definitely don't miss now we are back among the bigger hills is barbed wire fences, in fact another thing is gorse bushes and plenty of it on lots of hills almost as bad as the fences.
User avatar
Fife Flyer
Munro compleatist
 
Posts: 2499
Munros:255   Corbetts:50
Grahams:33   Donalds:85
Sub 2000:123   Hewitts:2
Islands:5
Joined: May 15, 2013
Location: Guess?

5 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).




Walkhighlands community forum is advert free


Your generosity keeps this site running.
Can you help support Walkhighlands and the online community by donating by direct debit?



Return to Walk reports - Scotland

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: Bonus, ChrisGledhill, Fairweather Softie, Kibby, kleighton, YoureSoVane and 47 guests