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Mount Blair - a straightforward amble and not a bad view!

Mount Blair - a straightforward amble and not a bad view!


Postby denfinella » Wed Jun 12, 2013 11:47 pm

Route description: Mount Blair

Grahams included on this walk: Mount Blair

Date walked: 01/06/2013

Time taken: 1.5 hours

Distance: 4.5 km

Ascent: 390m

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A Graham involving only 2 hours, 390m of ascent and with a reputation for good views seemed like a good idea for a day with the weather forecast suggesting a deterioration as the day went on. Light rain spreading from the west, and heavy showers developing especially east, meant we'd be gambling on a dry middle and a quick getaway before the sun was replaced by the wet stuff. Yes, we're fussy about only walking on fine weather days. Probably explains why my hill count is so low :lol:

There's space for a maximum of about two cars (at a push) without blocking the gate at the nearest point to the start of the hill track heading up Mount Blair. Luckily there was nobody else there at 10am and we set off along the tarmac and soon up the track to the right. Looking back we also noticed a car parked further along at the Angus / Perthshire border layby and a couple of guys heading up the opposite slopes towards the top of Duchray Hill - any claims to that being you?

Walking in Angus always seems to involve a lovely variety of wildlife and today was no exception. The familiar sounds of lapwings were everywhere. Someday I'll get a decent picture.

Lapwing.jpg

Sheep plus lambs were everywhere and there were a lot of cows sharing the field as well - so perhaps not the best place to take a dog. Perfect weather - blue skies and a gentle breeze to keep us cool.

Cow.jpg

Already there were good views back to Duchray Hill - these continued to improve with height. The walkers mentioned earlier were ascending by the tree line in the middle of the photo.

Duchray Hill.jpg

The wildlife and the transition from (very) faint (in places) field track to a clear one through heather (via a gate) breaks up the potential monotony of constant ascent a bit - in any case it wasn't too steep. Quicker than expected the transmitter mast loomed ahead, silhouetted by sunshine reflecting off a monumental storm cloud - one of those heavy showers developing already!

Blair.jpg

Thankfully the cloud never came any nearer and wasn't potent enough to drop its watery load yet. The gradient eased and it wasn't long before the top was reached. Masts have a tendency to spoil summits, but this one didn't seem to get in the way of any photos, apart from one.

Mast.jpg

The wind was light so we were able to balance the camera on the top of the trig point and stand in the old viewfinder panorama shelter for a picture - a rarity to get one of us both together :)

Blair 2.jpg

From the top there's an expansive view in most directions - over to Fife with the Lomond Hills (and the Central Belt behind), across to the West Highlands with Tayside and Schiehallion very prominent, plus a gorgeous line of sight directly up Glen Shee and into the Cairngorms. Further afield, a still snow-spotted Ben Lawers, Ben More and the Glencoe range were clearly visible, although perhaps not so much in the photos.

Tayside.jpg
Towards Tayside


Glenshee.jpg
Towards Glen Shee

We had a brief chat to a walker reaching the summit from the opposite side - apparently a whole load of deer had been milling about over that way. The last time we'd been in Glen Isla we'd seen several hundred deer in a huge group up near Black Hill and Monamenach (extremely loud as it was during rutting) - this area must be a favourite haunt for them.

With the sun still shining brightly the descent was made in double-quick time, and then we were off towards Kirriemuir to explore the various museums there. Forter Castle is well visible from the B-road enroute:

Forter Castle.jpg

Kirriemuir was mostly dry, and a pretty town with plenty to do. But it doesn't match a sunny day on a hill somewhere, even if it is Mount Blair complete with metal tower and motorway track! Lots of the hills we've recently explored seem to have involved little effort but superb views, and Mount Blair is no exception. Will have to start getting round to those hills with loads of effort needed and rubbish views. Or maybe not...
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denfinella
Walker
 
Posts: 1007
Munros:65   Corbetts:34
Grahams:21   Donalds:13
Sub 2000:56   Hewitts:11
Wainwrights:6   Islands:45
Joined: Mar 19, 2012
Location: Edinburgh

Re: Mount Blair - a straightforward amble and not a bad view

Postby Gordie12 » Fri Jun 14, 2013 8:43 pm

Hi denfinella

Thanks for posting this report.

Just reminded me that I have driven, walked and cycled past this hills loads of times yet never climbed it so put that right today - really good views from the top :D :D
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Gordie12
Walker
 
Posts: 1773
Munros:112   Corbetts:62
Grahams:17   Donalds:21
Sub 2000:35   Hewitts:24
Wainwrights:24   
Joined: Sep 6, 2012
Location: Nr Forfar

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