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Clearing skies on King's Seat Hill

Clearing skies on King's Seat Hill

Postby denfinella » Sat Mar 07, 2015 3:46 pm

Route description: King's Seat Hill from Tillicoultry to Dollar

Donalds included on this walk: King's Seat Hill

Date walked: 16/02/2015

Time taken: 6 hours

Distance: 15 km

Ascent: 720m

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Sunshine and heavy showers forecast in the west, and overcast in the east, so we optimistically headed for somewhere in the middle in the hope of getting sunshine without the showers! This was our first time in the Ochils beyond the gorges. Lovely walk for a Monday day off with waterfalls, open moorland, a summit and Castle Campbell, cared for by Historic Scotland. The tarmac Devon Way was a good way to link the start and the end of the walkhighlands route - we started at a layby in the middle of it to break up this long, straight section. Walking along the abandoned railway line, a little low cloud lay across the Ochils but it seemed to be lifting.

Looking over Tillicoultry allotments to the western Ochils:


Massive quarry seen from Mill Glen:


Once up on the open hillside, there's an overabundance of paths. The walkhighlands description is useful here, otherwise it's easy to end up on a slightly lower path which probably eventually heads back into the glen. Looking back to Tillicoultry:


After this it's straightforward going over grass towards the summit. Underfoot it was a little soggy but nothing serious. Over to The Law:


Towards the Forth:


Path junction near the top (wind turbines a bit of an eyesore):


Skies clearing over Whitewisp Hill:


Descending from King's Seat Hill there are lovely views across Glen Devon. The close-up topography is interesting around the Banks of Dollar, with a series of little ridges and valleys contrasting with the smooth hillside higher up.





Heading around the side of Bank Hill, Castle Campbell comes into view, nestled in the hills.


Looking back up King's Seat Hill:


The path leads to a tiny knoll with a bench perched right on top giving great views. After this it doubles back into the Glen of Sorrow, a dramatic gorge.



Eventually the path leads back out onto hillside just above the castle:



Castle Campbell is definitely worth a visit even on its own. Views of Dollar and the castle from the tower:



A brief shower passed overhead as we explored the interior. The castle from its gardens:


We headed down Dollar Glen on its east side - this is the more interesting path, although it was officially closed due to a few fallen trees. Easily passable.


A short but heavy rain shower passed over on the outskirts of Dollar, but it was dry again when we reached the Devon Way on the south side of the town. From here it was just another 30 minutes or so along the flat bed of the old railway line back to the start.

Probably one of the most varied walks for a long time - open moorland and hills, deep gorges, flat farmland, a couple of towns and a picturesque castle as the icing on the cake!
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Location: Edinburgh

Re: Clearing skies on King's Seat Hill

Postby Eskimo » Mon Mar 09, 2015 10:18 am

You nailed it with your last paragraph. Varied. That's why the ochils are great!
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Re: Clearing skies on King's Seat Hill

Postby Sarah86 » Tue Mar 10, 2015 1:38 pm

It is a good circuit and the ochils can be touch wee hills. I always enjoy them and as you say you get a very varied walk.
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