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Traverse o' Meikle Bin fae Croy - Stirling rail stations.

Traverse o' Meikle Bin fae Croy - Stirling rail stations.


Postby Norman_Grieve » Sat Dec 01, 2012 1:47 pm

Sub 2000' hills included on this walk: Meikle Bin

Date walked: 29/11/2012

Time taken: 5.5 hours

Distance: 38 km

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Traversed Meikle Bin fae Croy - Stirling rail stations on thursday.
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Last edited by Norman_Grieve on Mon Dec 03, 2012 12:47 pm, edited 3 times in total.
Norman_Grieve
 
Posts: 378
Joined: Jan 10, 2011

Herebe ze photos.

Postby Norman_Grieve » Sat Dec 01, 2012 1:53 pm

Herebe ze photos:-

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P1000913 by ninagrove1913, on Flickr

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P1000914 by ninagrove1913, on Flickr

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P1000915 by ninagrove1913, on Flickr

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P1000916 by ninagrove1913, on Flickr

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P1000917 by ninagrove1913, on Flickr

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P1000918 by ninagrove1913, on Flickr

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P1000919 by ninagrove1913, on Flickr

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P1000920 by ninagrove1913, on Flickr

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P1000921 by ninagrove1913, on Flickr

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P1000922 by ninagrove1913, on Flickr

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P1000923 by ninagrove1913, on Flickr

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P1000924 by ninagrove1913, on Flickr

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P1000925 by ninagrove1913, on Flickr

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P1000926 by ninagrove1913, on Flickr

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P1000927 by ninagrove1913, on Flickr

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P1000928 by ninagrove1913, on Flickr

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P1000929 by ninagrove1913, on Flickr

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P1000930 by ninagrove1913, on Flickr

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P1000931 by ninagrove1913, on Flickr

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P1000932 by ninagrove1913, on Flickr

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P1000933 by ninagrove1913, on Flickr

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P1000934 by ninagrove1913, on Flickr

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P1000935 by ninagrove1913, on Flickr

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P1000936 by ninagrove1913, on Flickr
Norman_Grieve
 
Posts: 378
Joined: Jan 10, 2011

EMap.

Postby Norman_Grieve » Mon Dec 03, 2012 1:26 pm

As the mair observant o' youse may hae noticed, ah hiv noo added an EMap. :wink:
Norman_Grieve
 
Posts: 378
Joined: Jan 10, 2011

TR pt.1c

Postby Norman_Grieve » Mon Dec 10, 2012 12:55 pm

Rode mein ancient auld nag doon t' hill through the frosty darkness trois mile tae yon rail station, towards the pre-dawn brightening skies o'er the Northern Sea. My request for an auld foggies' ticket fae yon ticket mannie was met with the query 'Is it for yersel?'', to which my odd look produced the desired response o' "Not that it matters", & production of the golden ticket. Minutes later I was strapping moi steel hoss into the rail provided, although 1/2hr or so later I found this had been ineffectual, as she toppled over into the aisle, fortunately missing all other passengers on the crowded loco.

Twa restful hours later we were pulling into cold, frosty but sunny Stirling station, where I found I had only a few minutes tae wait for the slow train tae Croy station. I climbed aboard just ahead of a couple with a wee buggy, complete with baby, tethering mein steed tae the end o' the rail, most of which was already occupied by another not so wee buggy. We followed the dog-leg round the east end of the Carleatheran massif, conquered on my previous expedition to these parts, briefly halting at Larbert. This was followed by a longer unscheduled stop, where I whiled awa the day by chatting to the couple with the babby in the buggy, being interrupted by the conductor after some time.

He expressed his concern over the presence of my steed, which he considered might be "becoming something of an issue", presumably due to the twa accompanying buggies, asking if I was getting off at Croy, to which I replied in the affirmative, which was probably just as well, as this may not hae bin optional... Eventually we started moving again following a fairly intelligible announcement o'er the tannoy, only to come to a halt shortly afterwards, where I alighted wance mair into the crisp late autumn air. Doon the wee access road I turned sharp left back over the railway & up over a wee hill past a church 7 school on the left, passing through Croy to join the B802, where I turned right towards Kilsyth.

Fae here there was a fast descent doon the hill, at the foot of which, beyond a wee roundabout I crossed the Forth-Clyde Canal & River Kelvin in quick succession. Here I stopped to snap the fine collection of routes at the entrance to Auchinstarry Quarry, basking in the sunshine, many of which I'd climbed on a visit with a long lost pal, many moons ago. There followed a rollercoaster ride through Kilsyth, racing the remarkably frequent bus services hereabouts, negotiating trois mair roundabouts, at the third o' which I turned left along the A803. Bearing in mind my recent rear-ending by a speeding car, I was glad to leave the busy roads behind not long after, turning up right into Balmalloch housing estate, built up the lower flanks of the Campsies.

I bore left at yet another roundabout, thence after checking out a dead-end track leading to a wee football pitch at a sharp right hander, I followed the road up a steepish hill, winding back left again, then turned off right just short of it's terminus, to join a cinder track opposite Braehead farm. Left along this soon took me down to join the wee hill road just above the much larger Balcastle Farm, which after a wee flat section, soon steepened up, where I gave my aching calfs & rear end a wee breather. Back in the saddle, gentler gradients led up to a sharp left hander, where the narrow trough of the Stoneree Glen was crossed below some wee cascades, fae where a fast ride led down to a T-junction with the lane coming up fae Queenzieburn. Here I stopped beside a wee signpost to the Carron Valley, pointing up the steep track heading straight up the hill to the right, which after a scoof of pineapple juice, I proceeded to climb on foot.

As I led mein steed up the roughish track, towards a wee wood up above, the views opened up behind me, over towards the vast metropolis o' Glasgie to the SW, a wee cluster of tower blocks perhaps marking the site of the Gorbals, where I'd spent many an eventful night in yesteryear. Closer at hand o'er tae the left I snapped the deep-cut wee corrie over which cascades the aptly named Corrie Spout waterfall in the equally aptly named Corrie Burn, backed by the steep south face of unimaginatively named Brown Hill. Climbing above the large Cairnbog farm on my left I then turned right upon reaching the foot of broad-leaved Corrie Plantation, where I briefly remounted my steed for the final approach to [you guesssed it], Corrie farm. The main old stone buildings up to the left of a wee white cottage, although intact, were open to the elements insofar as there were gaping dark eyes & teeth, where in years gone by there would hae bin doors & windies.

Rounding the inhabited wee cottage on the right, once more on foot, I climbed more steeply on the track which resumed it's path directly up the hillside, towards a wee herd of cattle. I passed these circumspectly on their right, several appearing to be highland coos sporting their usual sharp horns & wan o' the white wans being a suspected bull... Turning round I snapped the extensive vista over the roof tops of auld Corrie farm, the twin Roman Forts of Croy Hill & Bar Hill in the middle distance, with what I thought may be the cone of Tinto Hill on the far horizon. Passing the fearsome beasts without incident I reached the safety of the top boundary wall, above which after an easing in the gradient on a wee shelf, things steepened up wance mair for what turned out tae be the final push up the headwall of the south face.

Fae here the lang chain o' the Pentlands stretched alang the far horizon tae the SE, with a cluster of multiple tall columns of smoke much closer in the distance to their left, which I assumed marked the lovely site of Grangemouth oil refinery. As the angle lay back I climbed back in the saddle again & spurred on my steed, with a judicious kick in her flanks & the odd crack o' the whip. The good track turned obliquely left across the gently rising upper reaches of the moor, a final steepening providing an excuse for a wee breather, where I snapped the wee cone of my objective, Meikle Bin, which had finally put in an appearance. Over to it's right in the distance were the snowcapped Munros of Ben Vorlich & Stuc a' Chroin, with even whiter hills behind & to their right, which I guess formed part of the Ben Lawyers massif, all of which I captured using my wee digi-thingy's recently discovered zoom capability.

Breasting the final rise I then had a slightly dicy fast descent doon the icy track tae the dam wall of Birkenburn Reservoir, a large sheet of ice stretching some way out into the calm, very cold waters. I dismounted at the end o' the track at the far end o' the dam, pulling on my snazzy red SK4 Verto boots at noon, after a trek of o'er 1 1/2hr fae Croy station. I dumped my pack beside my prostrate steed, after 1st pulling out my 1L carton of pineapple juice & some Wensleydale with apricot cheese, then teeted across the icy outflow of the reservoir, negotiating the verglassed cobbles without mishap. There was a wee path across the far bank which turned right alongside a fence & became better defined, climbing fairly gently to join another fence coming up fae the right on the crest of Black Hill. I again used the new-fangled zoom tae take a shot of the Pentlands in the distance tae ma right, beyond the Carron Valley forest, Ben Cleuch being dusted with the white stuff.

Through a gap at the corner of the fences the path turned left up onto the ridge of Black Hill, where the top edge of the forest closed in fae the right. I was glad the ground was hard frozen, as it looked like the path would be pretty boggy & muddy in warmer conditions, remaining well-worn until it dropped doun slightly to a wee col, where the path split, the most prominent r.h. branch heading down into the forest. I continued straight ahead along the r.h. side of the fence to where another wee firebreak cut off right into the forest not far past a turn in the fence to the left, following a gentle climb fae the col. By noo there was precious little sign of any path remaining, as I descended slightly tussocky ground, the forest ride levelling out & passing to the left of the col marked pt. 451m. The ride then joined another at a T-junction, where I turned right to climb up steeper ground, breaking through the frozen crust into deep, slimy wet bog half way up to another T-junction.

Here I turned sharp right along a narrower forest ride, which at least had a rough animal track running along it, which following a level straight section, bent round to the left and dropped 100ft or so, the dense fir trees persuading moi against any jungle-bashing attempts tae get through to the open hillside up to the left. My patience then paid off, as I hit upon a wee path striking up a very narrow break in the trees in that direction, which climbed fairly steeply & directly, soon emerging into the sunshine at the top edge of the dense Spruce. It then joined a larger trail on the right, the firm grassy path leading up easily ascending moderate slopes, the frozen turf making for a delightful sunny stroll after the harder going back doun in the dark forest. The foot of the Carron Reservoir soon came into view down to the right, the azure waters reflecting the clear blue skies up above.

The angle soon lay back making progress even mair o' a daunder, the wide path skirting the cone of a wee forepeak to it's right, gaining the foot of the steeper final summit cone. This sported a trig point, the OS column being gained at 1pm, an hour after leaving ma steel hoss, just o'er 2 1/2hr after leaving Croy station. Here a very fine vista opened up over the top of the yellow grasslands of Stronend, to the long white line of the many snow-capped peaks of the Southern Highlands on the northern horizon. The twin high triangular peaks of Ben More & Stobinian were prominent in the distance, just to the left of Stronend's summit, their snows being bathed in sunshine, as was that of their steep, craggy neighbour Cruach Ardrain to the left. The western end of the range lay in shadow, whilst the sun lit the snows of the SW flank of the distinctive cone of Ben Lomond, well to the left again. Well to the right of Ben Ledi, Ben Vorlich & Stuc a' Chroin, the snows of flat topped Ben Chonzie rose behind the dark heather of Carleatheran, the windmills of Earlsburn dotting it's lower flanks o'er the west end of the Carron Valley Reservoir.

Following a final zoom in on the Ben More massif, a shot looking back doon the south ridge of ma ROA and o'er the Birkenburn Reservoir and wan mair doon the vale o' the Endrick Water, twixt Earl's Seat & Fintry Hills, I set off back doun said ridge with a wee diversion tae the right to take in the 550m wee SW forepeak. Upon reaching the trees I carried straight on down the main trod, eschewing my earlier vain attempt tae avoid height loss by wee diversion around the head o' the unnamed burn. This proved even boggier than the worst of the outward route, as I found when plunging through the frozen crust of churned up mud, the wet stuff below once again briefly overtopping even ma S4K Verto integral gaiters. The path steepened below the crossing of the forest ride of my ROA then broke through the lower edge of the trees to cross a clearing around both banks o' the wee stream. Another soft boggy section was enountered after entering the trees wance mair for the short climb up another forest ride up to the col to the west of Black Hill. I then turned left along the fence to traverse back over the broad crest of this hill, following ma ROA, bearing right along the fence over it's east end, leading to the icy crossing of the Birken Burn at the outflow of the reservoir.

Half way along the latter fence I was somewhat surprised to see another walker approaching, a middle-aged chap who asked hoo lang it had taken moi fae this point, concerned that he may get benighted. As it was still only 1.45pm, I assured him he should hae plenty o' time & asked him if he kent of a way doon tae the east end of the Carron Valley Reservoir fae here, as I was considering heading for Stirling rail station, rather than simply heading back tae Croy. He teld moi that he wasnae familiar with the northern & eastern approaches as the Carron Valley was too popular for his liking but pulled out a 1:50000 OS map which showed a continuation path leading north fae the end o' the dam, which had turned oot tae be non-existent. Thus once back there at ma iron hoss I picked up my pack & led mein steed back o'er the icy outflow & along the fence for the 3rd time, turning right along a wee path I'd spied earlier, following the easterly continuation of the fence on Black Hill. This veered left after a few hunnerd yards, descending gentle broad slopes towards the top edge of the forest, to the right of a large area of felled timber.

I lost the 'path' briefly at a marshy area close to a wee stream, the true right bank of which was followed for a short distance into felled timber, turning into a rough forestry track, where I was able to remount & ride doon steeper slopes, the surface gradually improving. This rapidly took me doun tae an excellent gravel track, where I turned right, hopping off again briefly beyond a couple of stream crossings, where the track climbed a wee hill. Following a short descent & level section I managed to remain in the saddle for a wee gentle climb over a wee ridge, beyond which a longer steep fast descent to cross the March Burn. A level stretch to across the far side of it's eastern tributary then led to another climb of 100ft or so, where I resorted wance mair tae shank's pony. There were several mountain biker warning signs hereabouts which indicated that walker's should act responsibly by clearing off, which I assumed had been placed by my Snr. Safety Officer, who later admitted that it 'sounded like her'...

Back in the saddle, another steepening descent led to a 'T-junction', where more signs flashed by, wan o' which I hoped was indicating that the 'escape to car-park', was doon tae the left, as I sped doun thataway, towards the southern shore of the Carron Valley Reservoir, negotiating several icy hairpin bends en-route.
A barely controlled steep drop of 200ft took ma tae another 'T'-junction where I took a right, not far above the east end of the large reservoir, across which I could see the sunlit cottages of Craigannet at the far side of the dam. The track ran along the edge of a large clearing with spectacular hoar frost coating the long grass, making me wish my digital camera battery hadnae run oot back at the summit o' Meikle Bin. Looking back this was now looking fairly distant, it's steep wee cone rising above & to the south of the west end of the reservoir. A final wee climb on the track, splitting twa short level sections then led past a fork leading up to the right, a last speedy descent to the left taking ma doon below the dam wall and around a final right hander to the approach to a large car park & picnic area.

Past a missing persons sign, appealing for info. on the whereabouts of an auld guy who'd vanished hereabouts 3 months earlier, a bridge over the River Carron then led to the B818, where I turned right, passing between the buildings of Muirmill & across the bridge over the Earl's Burn. Here I followed the right bend, the road leading along the foot of Dundaff Hill, following the river down to reach Carron Bridge Hotel after another mile. Here I was glad to leave the traffic behind, turning left up the hill on the minor road, signposted tae Stirling, 8 mile, it noo being 3pm, a large bird of prey alighting on a telegraph pole closeby, providing another missed opportunity for a zoomed photie. I gave ma steed & rear-end a wee rest as I led my transport up the hill, shortly remounting my steed for the next rather undulating ride over tae Easter Buckieburn farm, where I crossed the burn o' that name, draining Craigengelt Hill, with it's wee windfarm.

Here I dismounted wance mair for another couple o' wee climbs above the sizeable Loch Coulter Reservoir doun on the right, which led to a lang, steepening descent, where there were some lengthy stretches of the wee lane covered with an inch or so of ice. The most worrying section led through woods around the Loch Coulter Burn, passing a wee lane forking back up to the left, where a 4X4 sped towards moi at some speed. I wondered idly whether he had any more control over the direction he was headed than I, as we missed each other by rather less than a comfortable margin. Thus it was with some relief that I gained the far end of the latest large ice field without undue mishap & carried on doon the gentler inclines, passing Howietoun Fishery, beyond which I opted to take the left fork at a triple junction, passing along the left edge of Fiveyates Wood.

The wee lane took a rather less direct line doon the final hillside above the M9, which it crossed nae long afore passing close tae the right of the monument tae the remarkable battle o' Bannockburn, o' which the 700th anniversary is approaching. A wee climb beyond the crossing of the famous burn itself then took ma tae the junction with the A872, where I turned left through Borestone, taking the left fork at the roundabout along the B8051. This took ma in the gathering gloom through St. Ninians, past the polis HQ on the left & Regional HQ on the right, beyond which I took the pedestrianised high street, weaving ma way through the early Christmas shoppers. A right past auld McD's then led doon tae the station at just 3.40pm, where discovering that I'd 45 mins tae wait 'til the slow train tae Dundee [the flyer tae Airberdin nae stopping in wan horse toun], I tethered mein steed & hotfoot back up tae yon auld greasy spoon, where a bonnie wee lassie gave ma an extra burger, much tae ma remote local safety officer's amusement.
Norman_Grieve
 
Posts: 378
Joined: Jan 10, 2011

Das ist alles mein volk!

Postby Norman_Grieve » Tue Dec 18, 2012 1:13 pm

That's all folks! :wink:
Norman_Grieve
 
Posts: 378
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Re: Traverse o' Meikle Bin fae Croy - Stirling rail stations

Postby gaffr » Tue Dec 18, 2012 4:15 pm

I was kindof scratching my head trying to work out this one....but when I saw image of the sundrenched crag.....it came flooding back to me from many, many moons ago when we managed to fumble our way up a few wee routes there. :) ....at Auchinstarry quarry. Quite often in the Central belt of the county...East Lothian, Mid Lothian, Stirlingshire? etc,..... you can have a rewarding day out without having to travel to the highlands. :lol:
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Re: Traverse o' Meikle Bin fae Croy - Stirling rail stations

Postby morag1 » Tue Dec 18, 2012 5:38 pm

I'm fascinated by this report, against my better judgement :?

Years ago, we used to go to the Carron Valley for family picnics, and would spend the whole day there. We only ever went in through Denny, a very long and winding route. I would never in a million years have thought about going in from Croy then out via Stirling, as you did. Do you mind if I ask how long it took you from Croy to Meikle Bin, and then from Meikle Bin to Stirling? Is there a path all the way from MB to Stirling? If so that would be a great walk, especially if it crosses the Bannock Burn.

I climbed Meikle Bin so long ago I've forgotten all about it, must try to visit again soon, and this time maybe go there and back from Stirling.
morag1
 

Merry crimbo & a Heppy New Yaar tae all ma readers!

Postby Norman_Grieve » Fri Dec 28, 2012 3:57 pm

morag1 wrote:I'm fascinated by this report, against my better judgement :?

Years ago, we used to go to the Carron Valley for family picnics, and would spend the whole day there. We only ever went in through Denny, a very long and winding route. I would never in a million years have thought about going in from Croy then out via Stirling, as you did. Do you mind if I ask how long it took you from Croy to Meikle Bin, and then from Meikle Bin to Stirling? Is there a path all the way from MB to Stirling? If so that would be a great walk, especially if it crosses the Bannock Burn.

I climbed Meikle Bin so long ago I've forgotten all about it, must try to visit again soon, and this time maybe go there and back from Stirling.


Merry crimbo & a Heppy New Yaar tae all ma readers!

Took ma 2 1/2hr fae Croy tae top o' Meikle Bin & 2hr 40 min fae there tae Stirling. There was a path/track all the way doon tae east end o' the Carron Reservoir, fae where I followed the lanie fae Carron Bridge, after a mile or so alang the B road. Glad ye enjoyed ma wee TR doll. :D
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